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Topic
Life, Liberty and Property


Quotes

“According to the laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles; That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment. Therefore, it is not right that any man should be in bondage one to another. And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood.” (Scriptural, Doctrine and Covenants, 101:80. December 16, 1833.)


“Life, Faculties, production—in other words, individuality, liberty, property—this is man. And in spite of the cunning of artful political leaders, these three gifts from God precede all human legislation, and are superior to it. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws [for the protection of them] in the first place.” (Frederic Bastiat, The Law, p. 5-6.)


“Government is instituted to protect property of every sort.... This being the end of government, that alone is not a just government which impartially secures to every man, whatever is his own.… That is not a just government, nor is property secure under it, where the property which a man has in his personal safety and personal liberty is violated by arbitrary seizures of one class of citizens for the service of the rest.” (James Madison, The Complete Madison, p. 267.)


“No man would become a member of a community in which he could not enjoy the fruits of his honest labor and industry. The preservation of property, then, is a primary object of the social compact.... The legislature, therefore, had no authority to make an act divesting one citizen of his freehold, and vesting it in another, without a just compensation. It is inconsistent with the principles of reason, justice and moral rectitude; it is incompatible with the comfort, peace and happiness of mankind; it is contrary to the principles of social alliance in every free government; and lastly, it is contrary to the letter and spirit of the Constitution.(Justice William Paterson VanHorne's Lessee v. Dorrance, 2 U.S. 304, 28 F.Cas. 1012 C.C.Pa. 1795.)


“If history could prove and teach us anything, it would be the private ownership of the means of production as a necessary requisite of civilization and material well-being. All civilizations have up to now been based on private property. Only nations committed to the principle of private property have risen above the penury and produced science, art, and literature. There is no experience to show that any other social system could provide mankind with any of the achievements of civilization.” (Dr. Ludwig von Mises, Socialism, p. 583. 1951.)


“To deprive an intelligent human being of his free agency is to commit the crime of the ages. . . . So fundamental in man's eternal progress is his inherent right to choose, that the Lord would defend it even at the price of war.” (David O. McKay, Conference Repot, 1942.)


“The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. Property must be sacred or liberty cannot exist.” (John Adams, The Works of John Adams, 6:9, p. 280.)


“Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath?” (Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, ME 2:227. 1782.)


“I also spoke at length for the repeal of the ordinance of the city licensing merchants, hawkers, taverns, and ordinaries, desiring that this might be a free people, and enjoy equal rights and privileges, and the ordinances were repealed.” (Joseph Smith, History of the Church, Vol. 6, p. 8.)


“We believe that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the protection of life.” (Scriptural, Doctrine and Covenants, 134:2.)


“A frequently mentioned objection to capitalism is the argument that free enterprise, without government intervention, does not adequately provide for the poor and underprivileged. But it should be remembered that the free enterprise system is the one system that provides the framework under which the poor can become rich, and that under it America has been the land of opportunity the poor of other lands have struggled to enter. Instead of having to build a wall to keep people in, the United States has the problem of multitudes anxious to sacrifice greatly to enter and establish their posterity in this land of freedom and opportunity.” (Jerome Horowitz, The Elders of Israel and the Constitution, p. 121. 1970.)


“Unwise legislation, too often prompted by political expediency, is periodically being enacted that seductively undermines man's right of free agency, robs him of his rightful liberties, and makes him but a cog in the crushing wheel of a regimentation which, if persisted in, will end in dictatorship.” (David O. McKay, April 1950.)


“As originally interpreted, the United States Constitution denied government the right to regulate and control the citizen in the use of his property. Over the years the commerce clause and the general welfare clause have been so interpreted as to permit both the state and Federal governments to regiment labor, agriculture, manufacturing, transportation, communication, finance and all other forms of economic activity. Today, if there is any limit on the power of government to regulate, no one knows what that limit is.” (H. Verlan Andersen, Many are Called But Few are Chosen)


“Freedom is not a gift bestowed upon us by other men, but a right that belongs to us by the laws of God and nature.” (Benjamin Franklin)


“True law is right reason in agreement with nature; it is of universal application, unchanging and everlasting; it summons to duty by its commands, and averts from wrongdoing by its prohibitions…It is a sin to try to alter this law, nor is it allowable to attempt to repeal any part of it, and it is impossible to abolish it entirely. We cannot be freed from its obligations by senate or people, and we need not look outside ourselves for an expounder or interpreter of it. And there will not be different laws at Rome and at Athens, or different laws now and in the future, but one eternal and unchangeable law will be valid for all nations and all times, and there will one master and ruler, that is, God, over us all, for he is the author of this law, its promulgator, and its enforcing judge. Whoever is disobedient is fleeing from himself and denying his human nature, and by reason of this very fact he will suffer the worst punishment.” (Marcus Tullius Cicero, Great Political Thinkers, p. 133.)


“The reason why men enter into society is the preservation of their property….[Therefore,] whenever the legislators endeavor to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they [the officials of government] put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience, and are left to the common refuge which God hath provided for all men against force and violence. Whensoever, therefore, the legislative shall transgress this fundamental rule of society, and either by ambition, fear, folly, or corruption, endeavour to grasp themselves or put into the hands of any other, an absolute power over the lives, liberties and estates of the people, by this breach of trust they [the government officials] forfeit the power the people had put into their hands…and it devolves to the people, who have a right to resume their original liberty, and …provide for their own safety and security.” (John Locke, Second Essay Conserning Civil Government, pp. 75-76, par. 222.)


“It is the greatest absurdity to suppose it [would be] in the power of one, or any number of men, at the entering into society, to renounce their essential natural rights, or the means of preserving those rights; when the grand end of civil government, from the very nature of its institution, is for the support, protection, and defense of those very rights; the principal of which…are life, liberty, and property. If men through fear, fraud, or mistake, should in terms renounce or give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the grand end of society would absolutely vacate such renunciation. The right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of man to alienate this gift and voluntarily become a slave.” (Samuel Adams, Life of Samuel Adams, 1:504.)


“The benefits of the constitution and laws are alike for all; and the great Eloheim has given me the privilege of having the benefits of the constitution and the writ of habeas corpus.” (Joseph Smith, History of the Church, 5:471.)


“Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.” (George Washington)


“The supreme power cannot take from any man any part of his property without his own consent. For the preservation of property being the end off government, and that for which me enter into society…” (John Locke, Second Essay Concerning Civil Government, p. 57.)


“You have Rights antecedent to all earthly governments; Rights that
cannot he repealed or restrained by human laws; Rights derived from the Great Legislator of the universe.” (John Adams)


“Liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. But if we had not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us, at the expense of their ease, their estates, their pleasure, and their blood.” (John Adams, Dissertation on the Canon and Fuedal Law, 1965.)


“Come, all ye lovers of liberty, break the oppressor's rod, loose the iron grasp of mobocracy, and bring to condign punishment all those who trample under foot the glorious Constitution and the people's rights. [Drawing his sword, and presenting it to heaven, he said] I call God and angels to witness that I have unsheathed my sword with a firm and unalterable determination that this people shall have their legal rights, and be protected from mob violence, or my blood shall be spilt upon the ground like water, and my body consigned to the silent tomb. While I live, I will never tamely submit to the dominion of cursed mobocracy. I would welcome death rather than submit to this oppression; and it would be sweet, oh, sweet, to rest in the grave rather than submit to this oppression, agitation, annoyance, confusion, and alarm upon alarm, any longer.” (Joseph Smith, the last speech to the Nauvoo Legion History of The Church, Volume 6, Page 500. June 1844.)


“If our Constitution, our laws, and the fundamental principles of our Government are to be trampled underfoot, it would seem to be high time that all honorable men should stand up in defense of liberty and the rights of man.” (John Taylor, Ecclesiastical Control in Utah, JT Papers, Volume 2, Page 300.)




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