"Your Founding Fathers came over with that. They came over with the doctrines of the New Testament as well as the Old. They looked after one another, not only as a matter of necessity, but as a matter of duty to their God. There is no other country in the world which started that way."
-- Margaret Thatcher
"It is my conviction that the fundamental trouble with the people of the United States is that they have gotten too far away from Almighty God. I am bound to believe that in a tumultuous age like ours the most important and imperative duty is the reconstruction of humanity to Almighty God."
-- Warren G. Harding, 1921
“Each of you, for himself, by himself and on his own responsibility, must speak. And it is a solemn and weighty responsibility, and not lightly to be flung aside at the bullying of pulpit, press, government, or the empty catchphrases of politicians. Each must for himself alone decide what is right and what is wrong, and which course is patriotic and which isn't. You cannot shirk this and be a man. To decide against your convictions is to be an unqualified and inexcusable traitor, both to yourself and to your country, let man label you as they may. If you alone of all the nation shall decide one way, and that way be the right way according to your convictions of the right, you have done your duty by yourself and by your country -- hold up your head! You have nothing to be ashamed of.”
- Mark Twain
"I am not influenced by the expectation of promotion or pecuniary reward. I wish to be useful, and every kind of service necessary for the public good, become honorable by being necessary."
- - Nathan Hale, remark to Captain William Hull, who had attempted to dissuade him from volunteering for a spy mission for General Washington, 1776
“There is a true law, a right reason, conformable to nature, universal, unchangeable, eternal, whose commands urge us to duty, and whose prohibitions restrain us from evil.”
-- Cicero, De Re Publica, Book III
"We are firmly convinced, and we act on that conviction, that with nations as with individuals our interests soundly calculated will ever be found inseparable from our moral duties, and history bears witness to the fact that a just nation is trusted on its word when recourse is had to armaments and wars to bridle others."
--Thomas Jefferson, Second Inaugural Address, 1805
"If it be asked, What is the most sacred duty and the greatest source of our security in a Republic? The answer would be, An inviolable respect for the Constitution and Laws -- the first growing out of the last. ... A sacred respect for the constitutional law is the vital principle, the sustaining energy of a free government."
-- Alexander Hamilton, Essay in the American Daily Advertiser, 1794
“Of all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of Men and Citizens.”
-- George Washington
"The very highest duty of the States, when they entered into the Union under the Constitution, was to protect all persons within their boundaries in the enjoyment of these 'unalienable rights with which they were endowed by their Creator.'"
-- U.S. v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1875)
"Impress upon children the truth that the exercise of the elective franchise is a social duty of as solemn a nature as man can be called to perform; that a man may not innocently trifle with his vote; that every elector is a trustee as well for others as himself and that every measure he supports has an important bearing on the interests of others as well as on his own. "
-- Daniel Webster
"It therefore becomes our indispensable Duty, not only to
acknowledge, in general with the rest of Mankind, our dependence on
the Supreme Ruler of the Universe, but as a People peculiarly
favoured, to testify our Gratitude to the Author of all our Mercies,
in the most solemn and public manner."
-- John Langdon, Governor of New Hampshire, Proclamation, October 21, 1785
"A God-fearing nation, like ours, owes it to its inborn and sincere
sense of moral duty to testify its devout gratitude to the All-Giver
for the countless benefits its has enjoyed."
-- President William H. Taft
"Consider well the important trust...which God...[has] put into your hands...To God and posterity you are accountable for [your rights and your rulers]...Let not your children have reason to curse you for giving up those rights and prostrating those institutions which your fathers delivered to you...look well to the characters and qualifications of those you elect and raise to office and places of trust...Think not that your interests will be safe in the hands of the weak and ignorant; or faithfully managed by the impious, the dissolute and the immoral. Think not that men who acknowledge not the providence of God nor regard His laws will be uncorrupt in office, firm in defense of the righteous cause against the oppressor, or resolutely oppose the torrent of iniquity...Watch over your liberties and privileges - civil and religious - with a careful eye."
-- Matthias Burnett