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All Quotes by author - Jon Meacham
" A globalized world is by now a familiar fact of life. Building walls or moats may sound appealing, but the future belongs to those who tend to their people and then boldly engage the rest of the world, near and far. "
" A lot of people, including business leaders, think the future belongs to China. Globalization is not a zero-sum game, but we need to hone our skills to stay in play. "
" Among the many problems with taking the Bible literally is it reduces the most mysterious and complex of realities to simple - even simplistic - terms. Yes, scripture speaks of fire and damnation and eternal bliss, but the Bible is the product of human hands and hearts, and much of the imagery is allegorical, not meteorological. "
" An unexamined faith is not worth having, for fundamentalism and uncritical certitude entail the rejection of one of the great human gifts: that of free will, of the liberty to make up our own minds based on evidence and tradition and reason. "
" Anyone weighing whether to re-elect the President should take the bin Laden operation into account: it is a powerful exhibit that Obama is a steely Commander in Chief - a critical test for many Americans. "
" As a southerner born after the epic events of the civil rights movement, I've always wondered how on earth people of good will could have conceivably lived with Jim Crow - with the daily degradations, the lynchings in plain sight, and, as the movement gathered force, with the fire hoses and the police dogs and the billy clubs. "
" As crucial as religion has been and is to the life of the nation, America's unifying force has never been a specific faith, but a commitment to freedom - not least freedom of conscience. "
" Attacks on a politician's identity - questioning Romney's religion, say, or Obama's birthplace - tend to come when an opponent is desperate and can't sell himself. "
" A wise nation should cultivate a political spirit that allows opponents to cooperate without fearing an automatic execution from their core supporters. Who knew that the real rogues in American politics would be the ones who dare to get along? "
" Barack Obama is many things; among them, he is a tough and even ferocious political warrior. "
" Cynically but accurately put, Americans oppose public intervention or regulation if it helps others, but favor it if it helps them - take social security, disaster relief, public works projects, for example. "
" Environmental concern is a little like dieting or paying off credit-card debt - an episodically terrific idea that burns brightly and then seems to fade when we realize there's a reason we need to diet or pay down our debt. The reason is that it's really, really hard, and too many of us in too many spheres of life choose the easy over the hard. "
" Extremists often derive their inspiration from literal interpretations of texts that should rightly be read not as Associated Press reports from the ancient world, but as theological and literary enterprises requiring independent intellectual assessment. "
" From Jefferson to Jackson to Lincoln to FDR to Reagan, every great president inspires enormous affection and enormous hostility. We'll all be much saner, I think, if we remember that history is full of surprises and things that seemed absolutely certain one day are often unimaginable the next. "
" Given that religious faith is an intrinsic element of human experience, it is best to approach and engage the subject with a sense of history and a critical sensibility. "
" Given that sexual orientation is innate and that we are all, in theological terms, children of God, to deny access to some sacraments based on sexuality is as wrong as denying access to some sacraments based on race or gender. "
" Here is a pretty good rule of thumb for Democratic Presidents: if it didn't work for Franklin D. Roosevelt, who won four terms and a World War, it probably won't work for you either. "
" History tells us that America does best when the private sector is energetic and entrepreneurial and the government is attentive and engaged. Who among us, really, would, looking back, wish to edit out either sphere at the entire expense of the other? "
" I am a huge admirer of Franklin Roosevelt's, and I believe social security has done untold good in alleviating the once-widespread issue of poverty among the elderly. FDR believed in the greatness and generosity of Americans - but he was also a cold-blooded politician. "
" I am a southerner who grew up with and around guns. I own some still. My father gave me a .22 rifle when I was 9 and a single barrel .410 shotgun when I was 10. "
" I believe history will come to view 9/11 as an event on par with November 22, 1963, the date on which John F. Kennedy was murdered, cutting short a presidency that was growing ever more promising. Dreams died that day in Dallas; it is easy to imagine the 1960s turning out rather differently had President Kennedy lived. "
" I believe that my children, who are young, will look back on the early years of the 21st century in rather the same way I look back on the middle of the 20th: as a time when seemingly respectable people supported discrimination against Americans simply because those Americans were different from themselves. "
" I do not believe 'Newsweek' is the only catcher in the rye between democracy and ignorance, but I think we're one of them, and I don't think there are that many on the edge of that cliff. "
" I don't think anyone is qualified to answer questions of eternal fate definitively, much less pinpoint it to a given day. "
" If a person is homosexual by nature - that is, if one's sexuality is as intrinsic a part of one's identity as gender or skin color - then society can no more deny a gay person access to the secular rights and religious sacraments because of his homosexuality than it can reinstate Jim Crow. "
" If heaven is understood more as God's space on earth than as an ethereal region apart from the essential reality we know, then what happens on earth matters even more than we think, for the Christian life becomes a continuation of the unfolding work of Jesus, who will one day return to set the world to rights. "
" In America, now, let us - Christian, Jew, Muslim, agnostic, atheist, wiccan, whatever - fight nativism with the same strength and conviction that we fight terrorism. My faith calls on its followers to love one's enemies. A tall order, that - perhaps the tallest of all. "
" Incumbent White House parties have won 10 of the last 18 presidential elections; the odds are tight, but they favor Obama in 2012. And so gloomy Democrats, check your despair; gleeful Republicans, watch the hubris. "
" In the fullness of time, I suspect that bigotry against homosexuals will seem as repugnant as racial prejudice does today. Or so one hopes. "
" It is true that traditional Christianity is losing some of its appeal among Americans, but that is a religious, not political, matter. It is worth remembering that the Jeffersonian 'wall of separation' between church and state has always been intended to protect the church from the state as much as the state from the church. "
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