Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Bogus Quotes

One of the things I've noticed on Facebook the past two years is the great number of bogus quotes attributed to the Founding Fathers and other historical figures.  This is one currently making the rounds,

Like Washington would have encouraged insurrection while he presided as President.  This is a blatant distortion, as noted by guncite, of a speech Washington gave before Congress in 1790.  The actual quote is,

A free people ought not only to be armed but disciplined; to which end a uniform and well digested plan is requisite: And their safety and interest require that they should promote such manufactories, as tend to render them independent on others, for essential, particularly for military supplies.

Washington, like many other Americans, was worried the fledgling United States was in a poor military position in regard to its hostile neighbors, Britain, France and Spain, and was encouraging the manufacture of more weapons to arm state militias and the marginal US Army.  Yet, these bogus quotes are being used in defense of gun rights.


  1. I like even more those purported quotes which say the Founders intended this to be a Christian nation. That's a joke of the worse kind.

  2. The sad part is that blockheads accept these "quotes" at face value, which means they have read little if any history. The guy who invented the quote doesn't even capture Washington's tone of voice.

  3. Jefferson"quotes" seem to be a favorite of these folks.

  4. You sound like a typical anti-gun Liberal using any opportunity to interpret the 2nd amendment to your benefit. What makes you an expert about what Washington and others were concerned about? Show me your expertise on what the mindset was behind any of their opinions. The actual text of What Washington said and the "bogus" quote are essentially the same thing. One is put into more modernized language for the average person to understand. No mater how you spin it, you can not deny that the Constitution gives us the right to keep and bear arms. The first line of his quote "A free people ought not only to be armed but disciplined" Spin it how you want. You know what the founding fathers intended.

    1. It isn't the first part of the "quote" that is problematic, it's that last bit about "which would include their own government." That is putting words into Washington's mouth. We are all free to believe what we think Washington meant, but that is different from quoting him. A quote is not an interpretation. Washington either said or wrote the words attributed to him or he didn't.

  5. What? A quote is what someone says, in his or her own words. That's why they are put in quotation marks. Otherwise it's not a quote.

    Washington either said something or he didn't. You can't just make up quotes or edit them because they sound more modern.

    As they say, you are entitled to your own opinion, but not your own quotes ....

  6. Well, Whitehorse, your comment sounds like the typical knee-jerk reaction by a gun owner who doesn't bother to read much history. Washington would have never supported insurrection against his own government. He never said it or thought it. But, thanks for dropping by.