Saturday, December 29, 2007

Thoughts at This Time of Impending Chaos

After what has been arguably a very well managed election process, things are beginning to fall apart. There are riots, endless allegations of electoral impropriety and undue delays in the submission of results from key areas.

Here are some thoughts that we can keep with us during this time. There is undoubtedly something for everyone.


“The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.”
Martin Luther King, Jr., American Baptist Minister and Civil-Rights Leader. 1929-1968

" What country can preserve it's liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them ... The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it's natural manure."
Thomas Jefferson, third President of the United States, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence, and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of Republicanism in the United States. From the "Tree of Liberty" letter to William Smith. Paris, November 13, 1787

“If you see injustice and say nothing, you have taken the side of the oppressor.”
South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu

“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue till they have resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they suppress.”
Frederick Douglass, African American abolitionist, editor, orator, author, statesman and reformer, 1818- 1895

“Make yourselves sheep and the wolves will eat you.”
Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790, one of the most important and influential Founding Fathers of the United States. He was a leading author, political theorist, politician, printer, scientist, inventor, civic activist, and diplomat.

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
Edmund Burke, British Statesman and Philosopher, 1729-1797

“Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dedication of a Memorial to the Northwest Territory (July 8, 1938)

"We should all be concerned with the future because we will have to spend our lives there."
Charles F. Kettering, American inventor, 1876-1958

"When I despair, I remember that all through history the ways of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. Think of it - always."
Mahatma Gandhi

“In times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act!”
George Orwell

“The tyranny of a prince in an oligarchy is not so dangerous to the public welfare as the apathy of a citizen in a democracy”
Charles de Montesquieu French Politician and Philosopher, 1689-1755

“This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.”
Plato, Ancient Greek Philosopher 428 BC-348 BC

"One cannot level one's moral lance at every evil in the universe. There are just too many of them. But you can do something, and the difference between doing something and doing nothing is everything."
Daniel Berrigan, poet, American peace activist, and Roman Catholic priest. Daniel and his brother Philip were for a time on the FBI Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list for committing acts of vandalism including destroying government property.

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of this individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Nothing is more common than for a free people, in times of heat and violence, to gratify momentary passions, by letting into the government, principles and precedents which afterwards prove fatal to themselves.”
Alexander Hamliton, Letter from Phocion

"Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each one of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this generation."
Robert F. Kennedy

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts."
Bertrand Russell

“There is no crueler tyranny than that which is perpetuated under the shield of law and in the name of justice.”
Charles de Montesquieu French Politician and Philosopher, 1689-1755



Post a Comment

<< Home