Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“In the country of the blind the one-eyed man is king.”     Erasmus

June 10, 2007

Quote For The Day

by Doug Mataconis

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

Pastor Martin Niemöller

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3 Comments

  1. I don’t have a problem with this quote. I have a problem with the way some people use it.

    When it is used to justify going after some group because of a real or percieved threat then the person using the quote is just as bad as the ‘they’ that is being described.

    A person cannot use their moral compass to conscript me for their, or anyone elses, defense.

    When it is used to point out that one should speak out against evil then that is fine. That said, I usually see it used in the bad way I first described.

    Comment by tkc — June 11, 2007 @ 4:00 pm
  2. A slippery slope argument from a Commie apologist…nevertheless, in English, a culture who enjoys slippery slope analysis, the translation works and produces a line or two of memorbale rhetoric.

    Comment by C Bowen — June 11, 2007 @ 6:32 pm
  3. I’m with tkc, I don’t think I’ve ever seen it used properly.

    It’s like the V for Vendetta phenomenon. The left see it and think Bush. I saw it and thought modern England…and Bush.

    Such ideas cut across party lines and speak to the problem of power whose holders will always try to make themselves as exclusive as possible.

    Comment by Nick — June 11, 2007 @ 7:13 pm

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