Latest quote of interest (emphasis mine):
“…. We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men — not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular. …. We can deny our heritage and our history, but we cannot escape responsibility for the result. There is no way for a citizen of a republic to abdicate his responsibilities. As a nation we have come into our full inheritance at a tender age. We proclaim ourselves, as indeed we are, the defenders of freedom, wherever it continues to exist in the world, but we cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home.”
Edward R. Murrow
I recently used this quote in a reply to a rather offensive email and received some favorable responses to it. It’s from an era when news men actually knew what they were talking about, and instead of playing the fear game, did their best to educate the American public.
I picked it up from the introduction to a podcast called Hardcore History. Check it out if you’re a history buff, the guy does some excellent podcasts.
And remember, that we Americans are not descended from fearful men, but from thoughtful, caring people with the courage to look past our differences to build a nation in which we could all strive to live the kind of life we deem best. And that includes the courage to remind each other when we are mistaken and gently guide each other when we are mislead. (Rather than taking the easy road of being offended or giving offense.)