"The great and invigorating influences
in American life have been the unorthodox:
the people who challenge an existing
institution or way of life,
or say and do things that make people think."
William O. Douglas
(1898-1980), U. S. Supreme Court Justice
Interview, 1958
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- David L Rosenthal      
 -- Mike, Mount Holly, NC      
 -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
Not "The", but some
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
     -- E Archer, NYC      
    Liberal-socialists prefer you emote (show emotion) rather than think, so you don't notice their flawed thinking.
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
    Hmmmm.....you know, you could actually word this another way as well--like we used to say it: "The perverse and degenerating influences in American life have always been those who call themselves unorthodox: the people who challenge an existing institutions or way of life, or say and do things that make people think that anything they do is genuis and creative simply because they do it or because it shocks--'Wow! Its genius!" no matter how inane and base it is." Which is right? Guess that depends on whether or not you know base and depraved or not.
     -- R Van Winkle, USA     
    This is what made America great and if we are not careful we will loose this valuable character
     -- Robert, Sarasota     
    I only wish that what was considered "unorthodox" years ago was what is thought to be "unorthodox" today. At one time we were simply talking about creative geniuses...but today we are all too many times speaking of libertines who turn liberty into license and debauchry. IN a way....I do agree wtih those who "jump out of the box"--but, not with license. Personally, I think that is what Rip is saying--nothing this change from the creator to the debases--but called the same thing.
     -- Michael, Houston, TX     
    Not particularly shooting the messenger BUT, understanding the anti-liberty / anti-natural law / anti-justice / anti-prosperity author will give a different spin to the above stated and inferred, "The great and invigorating influences in American life have been the unorthodox:" ? ? ? "unorthodox", to who or what? It was an orthodoxy to the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind, bettering one's moral / educational / financial / lawful / just, etc. status and challenging institutions that were contrary there to was that which brought life to and hope of liberty (being unorthodox to the world at large). It was the above author's praised and sought after unorthodox actions to liberty that challenged law / justice / prosperity's supporting institutions and the way of life and thought that was attributable thereto. It was the above author's praised and sought after unorthodox actions to liberty that crippled that which was great in what was the de jure States united.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Unfortunately, I see little of that today - the Galileo's are becoming few and far between.....
     -- Robert, St. Emilion, France     
    This FDR appointed liberal certainly did what he describes here, only his was changing ways by forcing court orders on the public along with his other justice friends.
     -- cal, Lewisville, TX     
    Hey, Robert, there are indeed a great many Galileo's out there, and thanks to the internet they can share their discoveries without the need for a publisher. There are dozens of discoveries and inventions that have been buried by powerful monopolists to protect their markets. Anything that challenges the current power 'order' is pressed down. Inventions for the production of energy at minimal cost and impact to the environment have been buried and their inventors silenced. Multiple natural cancer treatments have been banned and their inventors discredited by the medical guilds beholden to the pharmaceutical industry. The advance of many new diseases are in fact caused by pharmaceuticals -- heart attacks were very rare prior to the introduction of cholesterol-reducing drugs. But church and state are still the perpetual enemies of innovation and discovery because it puts power back into the hands of the people and out of the central control of our self-appointed guardians.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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