Washington Post: Yes, We Need To Give Up Liberty For Security

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In an American context, Franklin's line plays on the idea that liberty is the thing we would be protecting by choosing safety. Trading freedom for security quote opting to give up liberty in favor of safety, we are essentially gaining nothing. The thing we value most liberty is lost if we elevate safety to a place of primary value. The essence of this idea, to me, is that liberty entails some necessary degree of uncertainty. Liberty stands in opposition to tyranny, to paranoia and to knee-jerk militarism.

When people have liberty freedom of choice, freedom of speech, freedom of action, freedom of movement, etc. If a position was adopted that sought to curb liberty so that people would or could not go "out of control" then people would effectively be controlled.

In opting for safety of this kind, freedom of movement, freedom of choice, trading freedom for security quote of speech and freedom trading freedom for security quote action would be reduced or eliminated. Thus, in choosing safety over liberty one trading freedom for security quote choosing safety instead of liberty.

What Benjamin Franklin is trying to say in this quote is that personal liberty is the most important thing in a democratic society. In democratic societies, we typically say that there is a tradeoff between liberty and safety. We see this tradeoff most clearly in the areas of ignoring binary options demo account traderush and of anti-terrorism.

A recent example of this is the revelation that the government has been collecting data on who we call on our phones. We say that we have to be willing to give up some of our freedoms so that the government can protect us from criminals and terrorists. Franklin is rejecting this idea.

He is saying that giving up liberty in order to get safety is something that is really bad. It is so bad that we do not deserve to have either liberty or safety if we are willing to give liberty up. This means that liberty is the most important thing.

The above answers are historically inaccurate and fundamentally wrong, although they do reflect the common misunderstanding of his original statement. Some historical context is needed. The Governor keeps vetoing all the bills, mostly because he was an appointed minion of the Penn family. The Penns have offered a financial donation in exchange trading freedom for security quote the Pennsylvania legislature conceding the trading freedom for security quote to tax the Penn's.

The original quote is found in a letter to the Governor of Pennsylvania, and the letter is commenting unfavorably on those persons in the frontier areas and the Pennsylvania legislature who are willing to exchange the right to tax the rich in exchange for a payoff to buy a little temporary security by means of a bribe to buy weapons with. Most modern interpretations of this famous quote assume that Benjamin Franklin was referring to sacrificing personal liberty in exchange for government provided security, although that was not his intention at all.

He was actually supporting a stronger government more capable of enacting legislation to protect it's populace. What does this quote mean: Related Questions What is a famous quote from Benjamin Franklin?

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The Works of Benjamin Franklin, Vol. VII Letters and Misc. Writings Benjamin Franklin. In January Benjamin Franklin was part of an American delegation sent to Britain in an attempt to resolve the outstanding disagreements between the Crown and the colonies. Seventeen points were up for discussion of which several were rejected outright by the Crown while others were rejected by the colonies.

As to the other two acts, i. All powers of internal legislation in the colonies to be disclaimed by Parliament the Massachusetts sic must suffer all the hazards and mischiefs of war rather than admit the alteration of their charters and laws by Parliament.

Remarks on the Propositions. In consequence of that engagement, all the Boston and Massachusetts acts to be suspended, and, in compliance with that engagement, to be totally repealed. By this amendment article fourth will become unnecessary. The numerous petitions heretofore sent home by the colony Assemblies, and either refused to be received, or received and neglected, or answered harshly, and the petitioners rebuked for making them, have, I conceive, totally discouraged that method of application; and if even their friends were now to propose to them the recurring again to petitioning, such friends would be thought to trifle with them.

Besides, all they desire is now before government in the petition of the Congress, and the whole or parts may be granted or refused at pleasure. The sense of the colonies cannot be better obtained by petition from different colonies than it is by that general petition. Read, such as they may think necessary. As it stands, of little importance.

The first proposition was, that they should be repealed as unjust. But they may remain, for they will probably not be executed. Even with the amendment proposed above to article first, I cannot think it stands as it should do. If the object be merely the preventing present bloodshed, and the other mischiefs to fall on that country in war, it may possibly answer that end; but, if a thorough, hearty reconciliation is wished for all cause of heart-burning should be removed, and strict justice be done on both sides.

Thus the tea should not only be paid for on the side of Boston, but the damage done to Boston by the Port Act should be repaired, because it was done contrary to the custom of all nations, savage as well as civilized, of first demanding satisfaction. The judges should receive nothing from the king. As to the other two acts, the Massachusetts must suffer all the hazards and mischiefs of war rather than admit the alteration of their charters and laws by Parliament. It is interesting to see where the main lines of disagreement lay between the colonists' delegation to London and the Crown in early which one would think would have been the last opportunity at some kind of reconciliation before independence was declared and war broke out.

No troops to enter and quarter in any colony, but with the consent of its legislature. The late Massachusetts and Quebec Acts to be repealed, and a free government granted to Canada. All powers of internal legislation in the colonies to be disclaimed by Parliament. Franklin was urging them that to do this would be to give up the entire game and thereby scuttle any chance for real liberty and independence in the colonies.

Writings Benjamin Franklin By: Revolution See this quote in context.