Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy July 4th Mr. Jefferson

In honor of the signing of the Declaration, here is one of my favorite Thomas Jefferson stories:

When Jefferson became President in 1801, he pardoned all those convicted under the Alien and Sedition Act. When Federalist papers made him the subject of fierce attacks, he took no legal action. A visiting Prussian minister found a copy of one such newspaper in a room outside Jefferson's office and was astonished that Jefferson had not suppressed it. "Put that paper in your pocket, Baron," Jefferson told him, "and should you ever hear the reality of our liberty, our freedom of the press questioned, show them this paper and tell them where you found it."

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