|The following is an article
from Uncle John's Supremely
Satisfying Bathroom Reader
O. "Wild Bill" Douglas (1898 - 1980) was the longest-serving
justice in the history of the U.S. Supreme Court. Here's what he has to
say about free speech, freedom, and the government:
"The right to be let alone is indeed the beginning of all
"It was against a background poignant with memories of evil
procedures that our Constitution was drawn."
"As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression.
In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly
unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we must be most aware of
change in the air - however slight - lest we become unwitting victims
of the darkness."
"An arrest is not justified by what the subsequent search
"The framers of the Constitution knew human nature as well
as we do. They had lived in dangerous days; they knew the suffocating
influence of orthodoxy and standardized thought. They weighed the compulsions
for restrained speech and thought against the abuses of liberty. They
"Those who won our independence believed ... liberty to be
the secret of happiness and courage to be the secret of liberty."
"Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous
of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily
"Whatever the reason, words mean what they say."
"What a man thinks is of no concern to government."
"A requirement that literature or act conform to some norm
prescribed by an official smacks of an ideology foreign to our system."
"Words uttered under coercion are proof of loyalty to nothing
"Common sense often makes good law."
"When a man knows how to live dangerously, he is not afraid
to die. When he is not afraid to die, he is, strangely, free to live."