H. L. MenckenH. L. Mencken, (1880-1956) American Journalist, Editor, Essayist, Linguist, Lexicographer, and Critic

H. L. Mencken Quote

“Debate, it seems to me, is one of the most useful of human inventions. It is the mother and father of all free inquiry and honest thought. It tests ideas, detects errors and promotes clear thinking. A man cannot stand up before it without exposing his whole intellectual stock of goods.”

H. L. MenckenH. L. Mencken
~ H. L. Mencken

Ratings and Comments

Patrick Henry, Red Hill

Not an absolute.

In the absence of good faith and will, debates can generate immeasurably more heat than light.

jim k, Austin

H. L . usually gets it right. This is no exception.

Mike, Norwalk

I like it a lot. About the only issue I have is the "mother and father of all free inquiry and honest thought." For example: an honest thought can be had by 'original thought', original observation, or original anything else, it is the secondary "debate" that sharpens the understanding thereto.


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