„Governments can err, presidents do make mistakes, but the immortal Dante tells us that Divine justice weighs the sins of the cold-blooded and the sins of the warm-hearted on different scales. Better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference.“

1930s, Speech to the Democratic National Convention (1936)

Adopted from Wikiquote. Last update June 3, 2021. History
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Franklin D. Roosevelt186
32nd President of the United States 1882 - 1945

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The Soldier's Wife http://www.lib.utexas.edu/epoetry/southeyr.q3c/southeyr.q3c-95.html, l. 11 (1795).

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„Governments do not make ideals, but ideals make governments.“

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Context: Governments do not make ideals, but ideals make governments. This is both historically and logically true. Of course the government can help to sustain ideals and can create institutions through which they can be the better observed, but their source by their very nature is in the people. The people have to bear their own responsibilities. There is no method by which that burden can be shifted to the government. It is not the enactment, but the observance of laws, that creates the character of a nation.

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„Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government.“

—  James Madison 4th president of the United States (1809 to 1817) 1751 - 1836

Speech, House of Representatives, during the debate "On the Memorial of the Relief Committee of Baltimore, for the Relief of St. Domingo Refugees" (10 January 1794) http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?ammem/hlaw:@field(DOCID+@lit(ed00423)):
1790s
Context: The government of the United States is a definite government, confined to specified objects. It is not like the state governments, whose powers are more general. Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government.

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