Quote Files: John Adams on Innocence, Guilt, and Punishment

“It is more important that innocence be protected than it is that guilt be punished, for guilt and crimes are so frequent in this world that they cannot all be punished. But if innocence itself is brought to the bar and condemned, perhaps to die, then the citizen will say, “whether I do good or … Continued

Quote Files: James Madison on Christianity: ‘Superstition, Bigotry, and Persecution’

The Founding Fathers are always everyone’s top choice when looking to bolster their argument, and despite being a generally skeptical lot (Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Paine, and Franklin were deists), they are frequently and inaccurately invoked by the religious to support the claim that “America was founded as a Christian nation.” But despite so many irreligious … Continued

Fake Quote Files: V.I. Lenin on Inflation and Taxation

It occurred to me, while researching alleged quotations from historical figures, that for every time someone cites a source for a quote, there are about 10,000 instances where people simply stick the purported author’s name under it with an emdash (—), as though it was a sufficient reference. This is quite maddening, because even if … Continued

Fake Quote Files: Adolf Hitler on Gun Registration, Conquest and Disarmament

Have a cause you really hate? Want to discredit it? Well, fortunately for you, there’s History’s Worst Dictators™.  Whether it’s banking, corporations, evolution, abortion, gun control, gun rights, atheism, or vegetarianism, these villains can be dredged up whenever you need cast the specter of mass murder on your opponents’ intentions. Just make up a quote, make up a date, … Continued