Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.
Learned Hand (18721961)
Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it; no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it . The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which seeks to understand the minds of other men and women; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which weighs their interests alongside its own without bias; the spirit of liberty remembers that not even a sparrow falls to earth unheeded; the spirit of liberty is the spirit of Him who, near two thousand years ago, taught mankind that lesson it has never learned, but has never quite forgotten; that there may be a kingdom where the least shall be heard and considered side by side with the greatest.
LEARNED HAND, The Spirit of Liberty, speech at an I Am an American Day ceremony, Central Park, New York City, May 21, 1944.Hand, The Spirit of Liberty, 3d ed., enl., ed. Irving Dilliard, p. 190 (1960).