Elbridge GerryElbridge Gerry, (1744-1814) of Massachusetts, Signer of the Declaration of Independence and Member of the Constitutional Convention

Elbridge Gerry Quote

“The evils we experience flow from the excess of democracy. The people do not want virtue, but are the dupes of pretended patriots.”

Elbridge GerryElbridge Gerry
~ Elbridge Gerry

Speech in the Constitutional Convention, 1787

Ratings and Comments

Mike, Norwalk

Ahh, knowledge of the ages lost to the pridefully ignorant, dupes of pretended patriots. But yet another Founder on democracy.

jim kilpatrick, austin, tx

If the people wanted virtue , Slick Willie would have never been president and we wouldn't have to be annoyed by Hillary , God help us.

Waffler, Smith, Arkansas

In the long run I will trust the people every time. Let me ask you , Do you trust yourself to make right judgements. If so why do you deny this to others. If you do not trust yourself then yes I would not trust the people either.

E Archer, NYC

Yes, I do trust myself to make right judgements -- however, I don't trust you, Waffler, so you don't get a vote in what I must do. That is the point. This is not a democracy, so butt out.

Logan, Memphis, TN

In the long run, I too trust the people-- but unlike Waffler, I don't think that it's morally justifiable to rape a women just because the attacking majority may say it's okay; I adhere to the foundations of our country that says a "Creator" gave each individual rights that cannot be usurped by the majority's rule... While I adhere to the people, I'll stand next to the women in protecting her individual rights from being raped by the majority (Republic). Waffler, you still haven't answered my question -- what's your magic number (ratio against the individual) where you say the majority finally has enough support to morally justify raping a women or killing a child? 2:1? 100:1? 100,000,000:1? If 100,000,000 people tell you its okay to rape a women, is that your magic number to drop pants and go at it? You're all about majority rule "all of the time"? What's your number? So you justify the atrocities against the Tutsi because the Hutu were in the majority, right? I recently had the distinct honor of shaking hands with Paul Rusesabagina; I am sick to think that someone in America could possibly support such a system and lifestyle that caused the great atrocities that great men like Mr. Rusesabagina went through. Sick and disgusting premise of life your Democracy, I'll tell you what...

Mike, Norwalk

When you trust the people every time, it means you don't trust yourself; thus the untrustworthy are emboldened by the untrustworthy, all experiencing the evils flowing from the excesses of democracy. I trust myself, the law and know when compelled compliance, license, larceny with impunity - including theft of the laborer's fruit & property by funny money - victimless crimes, forced ID/insurance/charity, etc. violate my inalienable God given rights. I love virtue, averse to democracy's dupes, fair weather friends, and sunshine and otherwise pretended patriots.

warren, olathe

An idiot. Not an excess. People are duped by liberalism. Period.

Waffler, Smith, Arkansas

In humility I think we should as a general rule allow to others the same good thoughts we have of ourselves, our judgements, intuitions etcetera not ignoring differences in education and experience. Until they cross us that is! I agree with what you are saying Logan 100%. I simply do not agree with your and others divisive rhetoric concerning the two words Democracy and Republic. If you could point out a time when a democracy allowed rape it would be helpful. I in no manner support rape whether by one or more persons as it is a violation of the rights of one. I disagree that a republic protects rights anymore than does a democracy. The Tutsi/Hutu conflct was sad. It apparently was rooted in real or imagined oppression by one group a minority over another group a majority. Democracy would have averted this mayhem befoe it had started.

Logan, Memphis, TN

Waffler, there is no greater example of pure Democracy than that Hutu/Tutsi conflict. The Hutu outnumbered the Tutsi by nearly 4-1. It was a conflict of real or imagined oppression, but this is irrelevant to Democracy. Democracy, in every collegiate textbook I've ever seen, defines Democracy as majority rule without exceptions. If you accept Democracy (for what it is, not what you want it to be), then you accept that the Hutu were justified in raping women, mutilating bodies (men, women, AND children), and in all other acts and atrocities, because the Hutu was the majority. Democracy would not have saved these people, because it was the 'mobocracy' of the majority rule that caused this shameful act to occur. This is the fundamental difference between Democracy and our Republic. Our Republic would never have let this happen, because our Republic operates according to the will of the people with exception of the infringement on the individual's inalienable rights. The main difference between our Republic and Democracy is that our Republic operates on an already assumed set of laws (Natural laws). If Democracy operates on anything other than the will of the majority all of the time, well then, it's not Democracy....

weeeeeeeeeeeeee, weeeeee

what does this mean?

caitlyn gates, north decota

this is so so so cool

RBE, somewhere in the USA

Yes, yes, and yes....

Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown

Isn't democracy a positive social mechanism for discovery?

Mike, Norwalk
  • Reply
Mike, Norwalk Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown 6/3/23

NO ! ! !  "Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for supper. Freedom is a well armed lamb contesting the vote." (attributed to Benjamin Franklin) Democracy isn't a positive anything (unless of course you are looking to progress poverty, death, destruction and tyranny). Social mechanisms only discover that which is antithetical to personal sovereignty, inalienable rights and liberty at nature's law.


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