“I have sworn upon the altar of god, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”
If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.
— Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address (1801)
Tags: 1st amendment, censorship, error of opinion, first amendment, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, quote, thomas jefferson
Evelyn Beatrice Hall was paraphrasing Voltaire's mindset, not quoting him. The closest he ever came was "Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so too", in Essay on Tolerance
‘What a fuss about an omelette!‘ he had exclaimed when he heard of the burning. How abominably unjust to persecute a man for such an airy trifle as that!
‘I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,’ was his attitude now.
— Evelyn Beatrice Hall, in The Friends of Voltaire, summarizing Voltaire’s defense of a censored book (1906)
Tags: censorship, evelyn beatrice hall, first amendment, François-Marie Arouet, freedom of speech, quotations, quotes, voltaire
Censorship, like all other oppression, is always imposed with the excuse that its victims are obviously wrong, bad, unhealthy, or foolish
If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.
— Noam Chomsky, Guardian (UK), November 23, 1992
Tags: censorship, first amendment, free speech, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, hypocrisy, noam chomsky, protests
It doesn't matter which party is in control, or whether they are "authorities"; if they are wrong, it would be treason not to openly oppose them
The citizen who thinks he sees that the commonwealth’s political clothes are worn out, and yet holds his peace and does not agitate for a new suit, is disloyal, he is a traitor.
That he may be the only one who thinks he sees this decay, does not excuse him: it is his duty to agitate anyway, and it is the duty of others to vote him down if they do not see the matter as he does.
— Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889)
Tags: alien and sedition acts, barack hussein obama, barack obama, bush, criticism, dart board, espionage act, first amendment, free speech, freedom of speech, george w bush, liberty, mark twain, obama, patriotism, Politics, president bush, president obama, punditry, samuel clemens, the emperor's new clothes, treason, truth, unpopular but true, unpopular speech
There is a recent push to censor political speech like the above picture, ban guns, et cetera, to "protect politicians"...but crazed maniacs aside, their fear is healthy for liberty
Where the people fear the government you have tyranny.
Where the government fears the people you have liberty.
— John Basil Barnhill, Indictment of Socialism (#3), transcript of Barnhill-Tichenor Debate on Socialism (1914)
JEFFERSON NEVER SAID THIS. That’s right. We’re eventually going to come out with a list of false attributions we’ve discovered while trying to source them for our own use.
Tags: 1st amendment, 2nd amendment, anarchism, barnhill, bill of rights, censorship, fear, first amendment, freedom, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, government, indictment of socialism, individualism, jefferson, john basil barnhill, liberty, politicians, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, right to keep and bear arms, sayings, second amendment, socialism, thomas jefferson, tichenor
If liberty means anything at all it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.
The common people still vaguely subscribe to that doctrine and act on it. In our country — it is not the same in all countries: it was not so in republican France, and it is not so in the USA today — it is the liberals who fear liberty and the intellectuals who want to do dirt on the intellect
— George Orwell, Freedom of the Press (1948)
(This was to be the foreword of Animal Farm. It is perfect irony, that the publisher decided to censor it.)
Tags: animal farm, censorship, first amendment, free speech, freedom, freedom of the press, gagged, george orwell, government, liberalism, liberty, orwell, Politics, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, sayings
Defend your opponents' rights, or lose your own
An avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty. It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws. He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
— Thomas Paine, First Principles of Government (1795)
Tags: 1st amendment, censorship, constitution, enemies, first amendment, first principles of government, founding fathers, freedom, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, liberty, opponents, paine, punishment, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, sayings, security, thomas paine, tom paine, tyranny
The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants.
He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the Nation as a whole.
Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile.
To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.
Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.
— Theodore Roosevelt, “Sedition, Free Press, and Personal Rule“, Kansas City Star (05-07-1918)
Tags: barack obama, bush, first amendment, free press, freedom of speech, george w bush, germany, kansas city, kansas city star, liberty, mr hankey, obama, president, roosevelt, sedition, teddy roosevelt, the war to end all wars, treason, truth, whistleblower, wilson, world war one, wwi
Words are supposed to hurt. That’s considered a legitimate way of fighting things out.
And what did it replace in the historical scene? It replaced actual violence.
Words are supposed to be free so we CAN actually fight things out, in the battleplace of ideas, so we don’t end up fighting them out in civil wars.
If we try to legitimately ban anything can hurt someone’s feelings, everyone is reduced to silence.
— Greg Lukianoff, head of FIRE, speaking on Stossel (2009)
Tags: 1st amendment, battleplace of ideas, censorship, college campus, fire, first amendment, free speech, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, liberty, marketplace of ideas, offensive, offensiveness, political correctness, political incorrectness, speech, violence, words
Temperate, sincere, and intelligent inquiry and discussion are only to be dreaded by the advocates of error. The truth need not fear them…
— Dr. Benjamin Rush, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Provisions of the Last Will and Testament of Dr. James Rush
Tags: adage, aphorism, benjamin rush, censorship, conspiracy, debate, declaration of independence, discussion, dr benjamin rush, education, father of psychiatry, first amendment, foia, founding father, founding fathers, freedom of expression, freedom of information act, freedom of speech, government, government secrets, inquiry, liberty, Politics, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, saying, secrecy, secrecy is tyranny, socialized medicine, truth, will
Areopagitica is regarded as one of the most eloquent defences of press freedom ever written.
Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties.
– John Milton, Areopagitica: A speech of Mr. John Milton for the liberty of unlicensed printing to the Parliament of England, 1644
Tags: 1st amendment, areopagitica, civil war, fire in a crowded theater, first amendment, free speech, freedom, freedom of expression, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, john milton, liberty, milton, paradise lost, parliament, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, sayings, speech, speeches
The best Jihad
is to speak a just word
to an unjust ruler.
– Mishkat al-Masabih, quoting Muhammad.
Tags: first amendment, freedom of speech, hadith, jihad, liberty, mishkat al-masabih, mohammad, muhammad, protest, quotation, quotations, quote, quotes, saying
The whole principle is wrong. It’s like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can’t have steak.
— Robert Heinlein, The Man Who Sold the Moon (1949), on censorship
Tags: censorship, expression, first amendment, freedom, freedom of expression, liberty, rah, regulation, robert anson heinlein, robert heinlein, safety, speech, the man who sold the moon
Remember this, take it to heart, live by it, die for it if necessary…true patriotism, the rational patriotism, is loyalty to the Nation ALL the time, loyalty to the Government when it deserves it.
– Mark Twain, The Czar Soliloquy, 1905
Tags: expression, first amendment, government, loyalty, patriotism, sedition, treason