Quotes about Freedom
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My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.
Adlai E. Stevenson Jr. (1900 - 1965), Speech in Detroit, 7 Oct. 1952

Freedom is just Chaos, with better lighting.
Alan Dean Foster, "To the Vanishing Point"

Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.
Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955), 'Out of My Later Years,' 1950

The basis of a democratic state is liberty.
Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC), Politics

Because you are in control of your life. Don't ever forget that. You are what you are because of the conscious and subconscious choices you have made.
Barbara Hall, A Summons to New Orleans, 2000

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790), Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

If you want to be free, there is but one way; it is to guarantee an equally full measure of liberty to all your neighbors. There is no other.
Carl Schurz (1829 - 1906)

When we lose the right to be different, we lose the privilege to be free.
Charles Evans Hughes, Address at Faneuil Hall, Boston, Massachusetts, June 17, 1925

You can only protect your liberties in this world by protecting the other man's freedom. You can only be free if I am free.
Clarence Darrow (1857 - 1938), Address to the jury, trial of Communists, Chicago, Illinois, 1920

We hold in our hands, the most precious gift of all: Freedom. The freedom to express our art. Our love. The freedom to be who we want to be. We are not going to give that freedom away and no one shall take it from us!
Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider, Northern Exposure, Cicely, 1992

Only the educated are free.
Epictetus (55 AD - 135 AD), Discourses

In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved.
Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882 - 1945), Speech, September 22, 1936

Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.
George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

Some tourists think Amsterdam is a city of sin, but in truth it is a city of freedom. And in freedom, most people find sin.
John Green, The Fault in Our Stars, 2012

The only freedom which deserves the name, is that of pursuing our own good in our own way, so long as we do not attempt to deprive others of theirs, or impede their efforts to obtain it.
John Stuart Mill (1806 - 1873), On Liberty, 1859

The First Amendment is often inconvenient. But that is besides the point. Inconvenience does not absolve the government of its obligation to tolerate speech.
Justice Anthony Kennedy (1936 - )

Patterning your life around other's opinions is nothing more than slavery.
Lawana Blackwell, The Dowry of Miss Lydia Clark, 1999

While the State exists, there can be no freedom. When there is freedom there will be no State.
Lenin (1870 - 1924), "State and Revolution", 1919

Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end.
Lord Acton, Lecture, February 26, 1877

The most certain test by which we judge whether a country is really free is the amount of security for the minorities.
Lord Acton

Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you're a man, you take it.
Malcolm X (1925 - 1965), Malcolm X Speaks, 1965

You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.
Malcolm X (1925 - 1965), Malcolm X Speaks, 1965

It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them.
Mark Twain (1835 - 1910), Following the Equator (1897)

This liberty will look easy by and by when nobody dies to get it.
Maxwell Anderson (1888 - 1959), Valley Forge, Act III, 1937

Self-reliance is the only road to true freedom, and being one's own person is its ultimate reward.
Patricia Sampson

To know what you prefer instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive.
Robert Louis Stevenson (1850 - 1894)

People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use.
Soren Kierkegaard (1813 - 1855)

A man's worst difficulties begin when he is able to do as he likes.
Thomas H. Huxley (1825 - 1895), Address on university education, Baltimore, Maryland, September 12, 1876

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.
Thomas Jefferson (1743 - 1826), to Archibald Stuart, 1791

We fight not to enslave, but to set a country free, and to make room upon the earth for honest men to live in.
Thomas Paine (1737 - 1809), The Crisis, no. 4, September 11, 1777

The love of liberty is the love of others; the love of power is the love of ourselves.
William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830)

This page was last updated: July 2, 2013
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