Liberty and Equality are the twin ideals of American democracy. But they are not the same thing... Many person who would gladly die for liberty are appalled by equality. Many who are devoted to equality are puzzled and even troubled by liberty. Much of the political history of the American nation can be seen as a competition between these two ideals.
The principle of democracy is corrupted not only when the spirit of equality is extinct, but likewise when they fall into a spirit of extreme equality, and when each citizen would fain to be upon a level with those whom he has chosen to command him. Then the people, incapable of bearing the very power they have delegated, want to manage everything themselves, to debate for the senate, to execute for the magistrate, and to decide for the judges.
The greatest security of the liberties of a people who do not cultivate the earth is their not knowing the use of money... The people who have no money have but few wants; and these are supplied with ease, and in an equal manner. Equality is then unavoidable; and hence it proceeds that their chiefs are not despotic.
Geometry gives us the sense of equality produced by proportion. It also heals by means of fine music all that is harsh and inharmonious or discordant in the soul, under the influence of rhythm, meter and melody.
Supporting the Equal Rights Amendment is like trying to kill a fly with a sledge hammer. You don’t kill the fly, but you end up breaking the furniture... We cannot reduce women to equality. Equality is a step down for most women.
The Bible is a book of faith, and a book of doctrine, and a book of morals, and a book of religion, of special revelation from God; but it is also a book which teaches man his own individual responsibility, his own dignity, and his equality with his fellow man.
Democratic institutions awaken and foster a passion for equality which they can never entirely satisfy.
We may naturally believe that it is not the singular prosperity of the few, but the greater well-being of all that is most pleasing in the sight of the Creator and Preserver of men. What appears to me to be man’s decline, is His eye, advancement; what afflicts me is acceptable to Him. A state of equality is perhaps less elevated, but it is more just: and its justice constitutes its greatness and its beauty. I would strive, then, to raise myself to this point of the divine contemplation and thence to view and judge the concerns of men.
Eager and apprehensive men of small property constitute the class that is constantly increased by the equality of conditions. Hence in democratic communities the majority of the people do not clearly see what they have to gain by a revolution, but they continually and in a thousand ways feel that they might lose by one.
It is… the essence of the demand for equality before the law that people should be treated alike in spite of the fact that they are different.