Morality is Essential to Freedom

“Morality is essential to freedom. That is what John Locke meant when he contrasted liberty, the freedom to do what we ought, with licence, the freedom to do what we want. It is what Adam Smith signalled when, before he wrote The Wealth of Nations, he wrote The Theory of Moral Sentiments. It is what George Washington meant when he said, ‘Human rights can only be assured among a virtuous people.’ And Benjamin Franklin when he said, ‘Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom.’ Or Thomas Jefferson when he said, ‘A nation as a society forms a moral person, and every member of it is personally responsible for his society.’ Lose morality, and eventually you will lose liberty.”

Morality, Introduction, p. 13