„Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.“
— Steven Weinberg American theoretical physicist 1933
Address at the Conference on Cosmic Design, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C. (April 1999)
This comment is modified in a later article derived from these talks:
:Frederick Douglass told in his Narrative how his condition as a slave became worse when his master underwent a religious conversion that allowed him to justify slavery as the punishment of the children of Ham. Mark Twain described his mother as a genuinely good person, whose soft heart pitied even Satan, but who had no doubt about the legitimacy of slavery, because in years of living in antebellum Missouri she had never heard any sermon opposing slavery, but only countless sermons preaching that slavery was God's will. With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil — that takes religion.
:* "A Designer Universe?" at PhysLink.com http://www.physlink.com/Education/essay_weinberg.cfm
— Edmund Burke Anglo-Irish statesman 1729 - 1797
This is probably the most quoted statement attributed to Burke, and an extraordinary number of variants of it exist, but all without any definite original source. They closely resemble remarks known to have been made by the Utilitarian philosopher John Stuart Mill, in an address at the University of St. Andrew (1 February 1867) http://books.google.com/books?id=DFNAAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA36&dq=%22Bad+men+need+nothing+more+to+compass+their+ends,+than+that+good+men+should+look+on+and+do+nothing%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=RUh5U6qWBLSysQT0vYGAAw&ved=0CEEQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=%22Bad%20men%20need%20nothing%20more%20to%20compass%20their%20ends%2C%20than%20that%20good%20men%20should%20look%20on%20and%20do%20nothing%22&f=false : Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing. The very extensively used remarks attributed to Burke might be based on a paraphrase of some of his ideas, but he is not known to have ever declared them in so succinct a manner in any of his writings. It has been suggested that they may have been adapted from these lines of Burke's in his Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents http://oll.libertyfund.org/Texts/LFBooks/Burke0061/SelectWorks/HTMLs/0005-01_Pt02_Thoughts.html (1770): "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." (see above)
:This purported quote bears a resemblance to the narrated theme of Sergei Bondarchuk's Soviet film adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace, produced in 1966. In it the narrator declares "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing", although since the original is in Russian various translations to English are possible. This purported quote also bears resemblance to a quote widely attributed to Plato, that said "The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." It also bears resemblance to what Albert Einstein wrote as part of his tribute to Pablo Casals: "The world is in greater peril from those who tolerate or encourage evil than from those who actually commit it."
: More research done on this matter is available at these two links: Burkequote http://www.tartarus.org/~martin/essays/burkequote.html & Burkequote2 http://www.tartarus.org/~martin/essays/burkequote2.html — as the information at these links indicate, there are many variants of this statement, probably because there is no known original by Burke. In addition, an exhaustive examination of this quote has been done at the following link: QuoteInvestigator http://quoteinvestigator.com/2010/12/04/good-men-do/.
Varianta: The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing
— David Gemmell, kniha Quest for Lost Heroes
Zdroj: Drenai series, Quest for Lost Heroes, Ch. 10
„We are what we are. Nothing more, nothing less. There is good and evil among every kind of people. It's the evil among us who rule now.“
— Anne Bishop American fiction writer 1955
Zdroj: Daughter of the Blood
„America is united. The freedom-loving nations of the world stand by our side. This will be a monumental struggle of good versus evil. But good will prevail“
— George W. Bush 43rd President of the United States 1946
2000s, 2001, Freedom and Democracy Are Under Attack (September 2001)
Kontext: I want to thank the members of Congress for their unity and support. America is united. The freedom-loving nations of the world stand by our side. This will be a monumental struggle of good versus evil. But good will prevail.
„I was reminded of a quotation by the famous American physicist Steven Weinberg, Nobel Prize-winning theoretical physicist. Weinberg said: "Religion is an insult to human dignity. Without it, you'd have good people doing good things, and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, it takes religion."“
— Richard Dawkins English ethologist, evolutionary biologist and author 1941
Part 2, 00:35:01
The Root of All Evil? (January 2006)
„Ultimately evil is done not so much by evil people, but by good people who do not know themselves and who do not probe deeply.“
— Reinhold Niebuhr American protestant theologian 1892 - 1971
— Elizabeth Barrett Browning English poet, author 1806 - 1861
Aurora Leigh http://digital.library.upenn.edu/women/barrett/aurora/aurora.html (1857)
— Jodi Picoult, kniha The Storyteller
Zdroj: The Storyteller
„The sad truth of the matter is that most evil is done by people who never made up their minds to be or do either evil or good.“
— Hannah Arendt, kniha The Life of the Mind
Zdroj: The Life of the Mind (1978), "Thinking".
„I object to violence because, when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary, the evil it does is permanent.“
— Махатма Ганди pre-eminent leader of Indian nationalism during British-ruled India 1869 - 1948
Young India (21 May 1925)
Kontext: There is no principle worth the name if it is not wholly good. I swear by non-violence because I know that it alone conduces to the highest good of mankind, not merely in the next world, but in this also. I object to violence because, when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary, the evil it does is permanent.
„The proper function of a government is to make it easy for the people to do good, and difficult for them to do evil.“
— Daniel Webster Leading American senator and statesman. January 18, 1782 – October 24, 1852. Served as the Secretary of State for three… 1782 - 1852
Zdroj: The Writings and Speeches of Daniel Webster: Diplomatic Papers and Miscellaneous Letters
— John Hoole British translator 1727 - 1803
Book XXXVIII, line 327
Translations, Orlando Furioso of Ludovico Ariosto (1773)
— Will Durant, kniha The Story of Civilization
Zdroj: The Story of Civilization
— William Penn English real estate entrepreneur, philosopher, early Quaker and founder of the Province of Pennsylvania 1644 - 1718
Fruits of Solitude (1682), Part I
Kontext: A good End cannot sanctifie evil Means; nor must we ever do Evil, that Good may come of it. Some Folks think they may Scold, Rail, Hate, Rob and Kill too; so it be but for God's sake. But nothing in us unlike him, can please him.