John Adams Quotes
US diplomat & politician (1735 - 1826)
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Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people.
Categorized under Freedom
We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge or gallantry would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other.
...a revolution of government is the strongest proof that can be given by a people of their virtue and good sense.
No man who ever held the office of president would congratulate a friend on obtaining it.
There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.
The proposition that the people are the best keepers of their own liberties is not true. They are the worst conceivable, they are no keepers at all; they can neither judge, act, think, or will, as a political body.
In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress.
I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in providence, for the illumination of the ignorant and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth.
I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.
But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.
Children should be educated and instructed in the principles of freedom.
Statesmen may plan and speculate for liberty but it is religion and morality alone that can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand.
Old minds are like old horses; you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order.