"There are many persons ready to do what is right because in their hearts they know it is right. But they hesitate, waiting for theother fellow to make the first move--and he, in turn, waits for you. The minute a person whose word means a great deal dares to take the open- hearted and courageous way, many others follow. Not everyone can be turned aside from meanness and hatred, but the great majority of Americans is heading in that direction. I have a great belief in the future of my people and my country."
"I feel more charity for a Mormon who has been taught from his birth that it is not only his right but his duty to God to enter into plural marriages, and that the man who has the greatest number of wives stands highest in God's favor, than I do for the man who has been taught from his cradle that the unpardonable sin is the desecration of womanhood; whose religious training and the moral code of civilization in which he is reared make it a crime to violate the Seventh Commandment and the established law of monogamy. Yet, judging from the testimony we see all about us--our ... lying-in and foundling hospitals and our fallen womanhood--the married or single man who lives a pure life is rare."
"The moral virtues, then, are produced in us neither by nature nor against nature. Nature, indeed, prepares in us the ground for their reception, but their complete formation is the product of habit."
"In a normal person the motor and sensory nervous systems act as the windows of the individual personality.... The broken, many-stained and pictorial windows through which the light is struggling under disadvantages to harmonize itself with the physical world at large are found in three classes of persons--the mentally deficient, the morally deficient, and the insane. In these, the light is there, but the images, as in a broken cathedral window, are more or less shattered and confused."
"... this I conceive to be no time to prate of moral influences. Our men's nerves require their accustomed narcotics and a glass ofwhiskey is a powerful friend in a sunstroke, and these poor fellows fall senseless on their heavy drills."
"While it is generally agreed that the visible expressions and agencies are necessary instruments, civilization seems to depend farmore fundamentally upon the moral and intellectual qualities of human beings--upon the spirit that animates mankind."
"All those who write either explicitly or by insinuation against the dignity, freedom, and immortality of the human soul, may so far forth be justly said to unhinge the principles of morality, and destroy the means of making men reasonably virtuous."
"... the structure of our public morality crashed to earth. Above its grave a tombstone read, "Be tolerant--even of evil." Logically the next step would be to say to our commonwealth's criminals, "I disagree that it's all right to rob and murder, but naturally I respect your opinion." Tolerance is only complacence when it makes no distinction between right and wrong."
"I think it saves much confusion to regard religion as quite distinct from morality, or the right conduct of life--as having necessarily nothing to do with these, but as a system of faith and worship, a belief in something extranatural.... Indeed, the most religious people are by no means the most moral. Hence it is that religion so rarely changes the man, or makes him practically any better. Let us keep things separated, religion by itself, and morality by itself. Religion implies a belief in the supernatural; in a personal deity who takes sides with or against us. A man may be pure, noble, virtuous, high-minded, spiritual, and not have a religion."