„Here, in the first paragraph of the Declaration [of Independence], is the assertion of the natural right of all to the ballot; for how can "the consent of the governed" be given, if the right to vote be denied?“

On the United States Declaration of Independence in her "Is It a Crime for a Citizen of the United States to Vote?" speech before her trial for voting (1873)

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Susan Brownell Anthony Foto
Susan Brownell Anthony1
Pionierin der US-amerikanischen Frauenrechtsbewegung 1820 - 1906

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Robert H. Jackson Foto

„We set up government by consent of the governed, and the Bill of Rights denies those in power any legal opportunity to coerce that consent.“

—  Robert H. Jackson American judge 1892 - 1954

319 U.S. 641
Judicial opinions, West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette (1943)
Kontext: We set up government by consent of the governed, and the Bill of Rights denies those in power any legal opportunity to coerce that consent. Authority here is to be controlled by public opinion, not public opinion by authority.

John Quincy Adams Foto

„The first steps of the slaveholder to justify by argument the peculiar instutitions is to deny the self-evident truths of the Declaration of Independence. He denies that all men are created equal. He denies that he has inalienable rights.“

—  John Quincy Adams American politician, 6th president of the United States (in office from 1825 to 1829) 1767 - 1848

As quoted in letter to the citizens of the twelfth congressional district (29 June 1839), The Hingham Patriot, MA. As quoted in Thomas Huges Rare and Early Newspaper catalog, No. 141
Letter to the 12th Congressional District (1839)

Albert Jay Nock Foto

„It may now be easily seen how great the difference is between the institution of government, as understood by Paine and the Declaration of Independence, and the institution of the State. … The nature and intention of government … are social. Based on the idea of natural rights, government secures those rights to the individual by strictly negative intervention, making justice costless and easy of access; and beyond that it does not go.“

—  Albert Jay Nock American journalist 1870 - 1945

Quelle: Our Enemy, the State (1935), p. 49
Kontext: It may now be easily seen how great the difference is between the institution of government, as understood by Paine and the Declaration of Independence, and the institution of the State. … The nature and intention of government … are social. Based on the idea of natural rights, government secures those rights to the individual by strictly negative intervention, making justice costless and easy of access; and beyond that it does not go. The State, on the other hand, both in its genesis and by its primary intention, is purely anti-social. It is not based on the idea of natural rights, but on the idea that the individual has no rights except those that the State may provisionally grant him. It has always made justice costly and difficult of access, and has invariably held itself above justice and common morality whenever it could advantage itself by so doing.

Susan B. Anthony Foto

„We no longer petition legislature or Congress to give of the right to vote, but appeal to women everywhere to exercise their too long neglected "citizen's right" … We assert the province of government to be to secure the people in the enjoyment of their unalienable rights. We throw to the winds the old dogma that governments can give rights.“

—  Susan B. Anthony American women's rights activist 1820 - 1906

Address given in towns of Ontario county, prior to her trial, quoted in "An account of the proceedings on the trial of Susan B. Anthony, on the charge of illegal voting, at the presidential election in Nov. 1872, and on the trial of Beverly W. Jones, Edwin T. Marsh and William B. Hall, the inspectors of election by whom her vote was received." (1873) http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?ammem/naw:@field(DOCID+@lit(rbnawsan2152div13)); also quoted in Great American Trials: 201 Compelling Courtroom Dramas (1994) by Edward W. Knappman, p. 167
Kontext: We no longer petition legislature or Congress to give of the right to vote, but appeal to women everywhere to exercise their too long neglected "citizen's right" … We assert the province of government to be to secure the people in the enjoyment of their unalienable rights. We throw to the winds the old dogma that governments can give rights. The Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution the constitutions of the several states … propose to protect the people in the exercise of their God-given rights. Not one of them pretends to bestow rights. … One half of the people of this Nation today are utterly powerless to blot from the statute books an unjust law, or to write a new and just one. The women, dissatisfied as they are with this form of government, that enforces taxation without representation — that compels them to obey laws to which they have never given their consent — that imprisons and hangs them without a trial by a jury of their peers — that robs them, in marriage of the custody of their own persons, wages, and children—are this half of the people left wholly at the mercy of the other half.

Robert G. Ingersoll Foto

„The Declaration of Independence announces the sublime truth, that all power comes from the people. This was a denial, and the first denial of a nation, of the infamous dogma that God confers the right upon one man to govern others.“

—  Robert G. Ingersoll Union United States Army officer 1833 - 1899

Individuality http://www.infidels.org/library/historical/robert_ingersoll/individuality.html (1873).
Kontext: The Declaration of Independence announces the sublime truth, that all power comes from the people. This was a denial, and the first denial of a nation, of the infamous dogma that God confers the right upon one man to govern others. It was the first grand assertion of the dignity of the human race. It declared the governed to be the source of power, and in fact denied the authority of any and all gods. Through the ages of slavery — through the weary centuries of the lash and chain, God was the acknowledged ruler of the world. To enthrone man, was to dethrone God.

Calvin Coolidge Foto
Lyndon B. Johnson Foto
Gerald Ford Foto

„The founding of our Nation was more than a political event; it was an act of faith, a promise to Americans and to the entire world. The Declaration of Independence declared that people can govern themselves, that they can live in freedom with equal rights, that they can respect the rights of others.“

—  Gerald Ford American politician, 38th President of the United States (in office from 1974 to 1977) 1913 - 2006

Memorial Day address, Arlington National Cemetery (31 May 1976) http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=6071
1970s
Kontext: The founding of our Nation was more than a political event; it was an act of faith, a promise to Americans and to the entire world. The Declaration of Independence declared that people can govern themselves, that they can live in freedom with equal rights, that they can respect the rights of others.
In the two centuries that have passed since 1776, millions upon millions of Americans have worked and taken up arms when necessary to make that dream a reality. We can be extremely proud of what they have accomplished. Today, we are the world's oldest republic. We are at peace. Our Nation and our way of life endure. We are free.

Rufus Choate Foto

„Its constitution the glittering and sounding generalities of natural right which make up the Declaration of Independence.“

—  Rufus Choate American politician 1799 - 1859

Letter to the Maine Whig Committee (1856). Six years earlier, Choate gave a lecture in Providence which was reviewed by Franklin J. Dickman in the Journal of December 14, 1849. Unless Choate used the words "glittering generalities", and Dickman made reference to them, it would seem as if Dickman must have the credit of originating the catchword. Dickman wrote: "We fear that the glittering generalities of the speaker have left an impression more delightful than permanent". Reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).

Calvin Coolidge Foto
Lyndon B. Johnson Foto
James A. Garfield Foto

„But liberty is no negation. It is a substantive, tangible reality. It is the realization of those imperishable truths of the Declaration 'that all men are created equal', that the sanction of all just government is 'the consent of the governed'. Can these truths be realized until each man has a right be to heard on all matters relating to himself?“

—  James A. Garfield American politician, 20th President of the United States (in office in 1881) 1831 - 1881

1860s, Speech in the House of Representatives (1866)
Kontext: Have we done it? Have we given freedom to the black man? What is freedom? Is it mere negation? Is it the bare privilege of not being chained, of not being bought and sold, branded and scourged? If this is all, then freedom is a bitter mockery, a cruel delusion, and it may well be questioned whether slavery were not better. But liberty is no negation. It is a substantial, tangible reality. It is the realization of those imperishable truths of the Declaration, 'that all men are created equal'; that the sanction of all just government is 'the consent of the governed.' Can these be realized until each man has a right to be heard on all matters relating to himself?
Kontext: In the great crisis of the war, God brought us face to face with the mighty truth, that we must lose our own freedom or grant it to the slave. In the extremity of our distress, we called upon the black man to help us save the Republic; and, amid the very thunders of battle, we made a covenant with him, sealed both with his blood and with ours, and witnessed by Jehovah, that, when the nation was redeemed, he should be free, and share with us its glories and its blessings. The Omniscient Witness will appear in judgment against us if we do not fulfill that covenant. Have we done it? Have we given freedom to the black man? What is freedom? Is it mere negation? Is it the bare privilege of not being chained, of not being bought and sold, branded and scourged? If this is all, then freedom is a bitter mockery, a cruel delusion, and it may well be questioned whether slavery were not better. But liberty is no negation. It is a substantial, tangible reality. It is the realization of those imperishable truths of the Declaration, 'that all men are created equal'; that the sanction of all just government is 'the consent of the governed.' Can these be realized until each man has a right to be heard on all matters relating to himself? The plain truth is, that each man knows his own interest best It has been said, 'If he is compelled to pay, if he may be compelled to fight, if he be required implicitly to obey, he should be legally entitled to be told what for; to have his consent asked, and his opinion counted at what it is worth. There ought to be no pariahs in a full-grown and civilized nation, no persons disqualified except through their own default.' I would not insult your intelligence by discussing so plain a truth, had not the passion and prejudice of this generation called in question the very axioms of the Declaration.

Calvin Coolidge Foto
Harry V. Jaffa Foto
Antonin Scalia Foto
Henry Adams Foto
Calvin Coolidge Foto

„If all men are created equal, that is final. If they are endowed with inalienable rights, that is final. If governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, that is final.“

—  Calvin Coolidge American politician, 30th president of the United States (in office from 1923 to 1929) 1872 - 1933

1920s, Speech on the Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence (1926)
Kontext: If all men are created equal, that is final. If they are endowed with inalienable rights, that is final. If governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, that is final. No advance, no progress can be made beyond these propositions. If anyone wishes to deny their truth or their soundness, the only direction in which he can proceed historically is not forward, but backward toward the time when there was no equality, no rights of the individual, no rule of the people. Those who wish to proceed in that direction can not lay claim to progress. They are reactionary. Their ideas are not more modern, but more ancient, than those of the Revolutionary fathers.

Isabel II do Reino Unido Foto

„The right to change the government by the ballot box and not the barrel of a gun; perhaps the best definition of a democracy.“

—  Isabel II do Reino Unido queen of the UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, and head of the Commonwealth of Nations 1926

During a speech to President Gerald Ford celebrating the 200th anniversary of American independence. http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Q

Fabian Picardo Foto

„We are here to assert that we have the right to self determination.“

—  Fabian Picardo Gibraltarian politician and barrister 1972

Speech to crowds in Casemates Square on Gibraltar National Day 2012.
2012
Kontext: This is the Rock of the Gibraltarians. This is our land. This is our home. This is our Rock. Only we can decide its future. And we are not here to ask anyone for the right to self determination. We are here to assert that we have the right to self determination. And only we can decide the destiny of this Rock and no 300-year old treaty and no threats will ever intimidate us. So in case anybody needs reminding, we will never concede one grain of sand, one breath of our air, or one drop of our waters. Not one drop!

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