This first one is taken from what I believe to be the single greatest political speech in American history. It was given by Ronald Reagan on behalf of Barry Goldwater during the 1964 Presidential Campaign.
"This idea -- that government was beholden to the people, that it had no other source of power is still the newest, most unique idea in all the long history of man's relation to man. This is the issue of this election: Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American Revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capital can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves." - Ronald Wilson Reagan, from A Time for Choosing, October 27th, 1964
"One bleeding-heart type asked me in a recent interview if I did not agree that 'violence begets violence.' I told him that it is my earnest endeavor to see that it does. I would like very much to ensure — and in some cases I have — that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy." - Jeff Cooper
"Tyranny is defined as that which is legal for the government, buy illegal for the citizenry" - Thomas Jefferson
“An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.”- Robert A. Heinlein from Beyond This Horizon
“Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.” - Teddy Roosevelt
"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!" - Patrick Henry, St. John's Church, Richmond, Virginia March 23, 1775
“Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility.” - Bryan Magee
"A right delayed is a right denied" - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
"......No, if destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of free men we will live forever or die by suicide.” - Abraham Lincoln
“In every country where independence has taken the place of liberty, the first desire of a manly heart is to possess a weapon which at once renders him capable of defence or attack, and, by rendering its owner fearsome, makes him feared.” ― Alexander Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo
"Of the people killed with guns every year, how many are true 'tragedies,' and how many are we frankly better off without?"- From The Good Riddance Factor by Mark Moritz
"The media insist that crime is the major concern of the American public today. In this connection they generally push the point that a disarmed society would be a crime-free society. They will not accept the truth that if you take all the guns off the street you still will have a crime problem, whereas if you take the criminals off the street you cannot have a gun problem." - Jeff Cooper
"I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.” – Thomas Jefferson
"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” ― George Orwell
"In the beginning of a change the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." - Mark Twain
"The Nation which can prefer disgrace to danger is prepared for a Master and deserves one." - Alexander Hamilton
“Most gun control arguments miss the point. If all control boils fundamentally to force, how can one resist aggression without equal force? How can a truly “free” state exist if the individual citizen is enslaved to the forceful will of individual or organized aggressors? It cannot.” - Tiffany Madison
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." - Robert A. Heinlein, from Time Enough for Love: Notebooks of Lazarus Lo.
"Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum" - Publius Flavius Vegetius Renutas: De Re Militari (If you seek peace, prepare for war)
“The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere restrains evil interference – they deserve a place of honor with all that’s good.” – George Washington
“A vote is like a rifle: its usefulness depends upon the character of the user.” - Teddy Roosevelt
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” – Benjamin Franklin.
“Foolish liberals who are trying to read the Second Amendment out of the Constitution by claiming it's not an individual right or that it's too much of a public safety hazard, don't see the danger in the big picture. They're courting disaster by encouraging others to use the same means to eliminate portions of the Constitution they don't like.” - Alan M. Dershowitz
" An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it" - Jeff Cooper
"If you can't trust people with freedom, how can you trust people with power? - Anonymous
"Hey, join the fucking club! I thought I was going to be the starting center fielder for the Boston Red Sox! Life sucks, get a fucking helmet!" - Denis Leary
"When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender." - Mark Kloos, from Why the Gun is Civilization
"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." - Don B. Kates Jr, paraphrasing Dr. Sigmund Freud's 10th Lecture: Symbolism in Dreams
"Arms discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property... Horrid mischief would ensue were the law-abiding deprived of the use of them." - Thomas Paine
"You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream-the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, "The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits."
- Ronald Wilson Reagan, from A Time for Choosing, October 27th, 1964
“That rifle on the wall of the labourer's cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.” – George Orwell
"Gun control: The theory that a woman found dead in an alley, raped and strangled with her panty hose, is somehow morally superior to a woman explaining to police how her attacker got that fatal bullet wound." — unknown
"The conclusions seem inescapable that in certain circles a tendency has arisen to fear people who fear government. Government, as the Father of Our Country put it so well, is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. People who understand history, especially the history of government, do well to fear it. For a people to express openly their fear of those of us who are afraid of tyranny is alarming. Fear of the state is in no sense subversive. It is, to the contrary, the healthiest political philosophy for a free people." - Jeff Cooper