"The triumph of morality: A thief who has broken into a bedroom claims his sense of shame had been outraged, and by threatening theoccupants with exposure of an immoral act he blackmails them into not bringing charges for burglary."
"... when you make it a moral necessity for the young to dabble in all the subjects that the books on the top shelf are written about, you kill two very large birds with one stone: you satisfy precious curiosities, and you make them believe that they know as much about life as people who really know something. If college boys are solemnly advised to listen to lectures on prostitution, they will listen; and who is to blame if some time, in a less moral moment, they profit by their information?"
"Each man's private conscience ought to be a nice little self-registering thermometer: he ought to carry his moral code incorruptibly and explicitly within himself, and not care what the world thinks. The mass of human beings, however, are not made that way; and many people have been saved from crime or sin by the simple dislike of doing things they would not like to confess ..."
"We have decided that manners shall consist entirely of morals. It is just possible that, in the days when morals consisted largelyof manners, fewer people were contaminated. You cannot shock a person practically whom you are totally unwilling to shock verbally; and if you are perfectly willing to shock an individual verbally, the next thing you will be doing is to shock him practically. Above all, when we become incapable of the shock verbal, there will be nothing left for the unconventional people but the shock practical."
"New inventions can and will be made; however, nothing new can be thought of that concerns moral man. Everything has already been thought and said which at best we can express in different forms and give new expressions to."
"Whoever considers morality the main objective of human existence, seems to me like a person who defines the purpose of a clock asnot going wrong. The first objective for a clock, is, however, that it does run; not going wrong is an additional regulative function. If not a watch's greatest accomplishment were not going wrong, unwound watches might be the best."
"I prize the purity of his character as highly as I do that of hers. As a moral being, whatever it is morally wrong for her to do,it is morally wrong for him to do. The fallacious doctrine of male and female virtues has well nigh ruined all that is morally great and lovely in his character: he has been quite as deep a sufferer by it as woman, though mostly in different respects and by other processes."
"... this nation is rotten at the heart, and ... nothing but the most tremendous blows with the sledge-hammer of abolition truth, could ever have broken the false rest which we had taken up for ourselves on the very brink of ruin."
"When human beings are regarded as moral beings, sex, instead of being enthroned upon the summit, administering upon rights and responsibilities, sinks into insignificance and nothingness. My doctrine then is, that whatever it is morally right for man to do, it is morally right for woman to do. Our duties originate, not from difference of sex, but from the diversity of our relations in life, the various gifts and talents committed to our care, and the different eras in which we live."
"Human beings have rights, because they are moral beings: the rights of all men grow out of their moral nature; and as all men havethe same moral nature, they have essentially the same rights. These rights may be wrested from the slave, but they cannot be alienated: his title to himself is as perfect now, as is that of Lyman Beecher: it is stamped on his moral being, and is, like it, imperishable."
"Only let the North exert as much moral influence over the South, as the South has exerted demoralizing influence over the North, and slavery would die amid the flame of Christian remonstrance, and faithful rebuke, and holy indignation."