The 28th President of the United States was born on this day (the 28th day of December). So today I’m sharing a few quotes in his honor, starting with the one featured in this Woodrow Wilson Coloring Page.
As has been the case with several other presidential quote coloring pages I’ve published, Wilson’s words of warning are as timely today as when he first uttered them:
“I can imagine no greater disservice to the country than to establish a system of censorship that would deny to the people of a free republic like our own their indisputable right to criticize their own public officials. While exercising the great powers of the office I hold, I would regret in a crisis like the one through which we are now passing to lose the benefit of patriotic and intelligent criticism.”
In Defense of the First Amendment
And that’s not all Wilson had to say about the freedom of speech. He also wryly observed, “I have always been among those who believed that the greatest freedom of speech was the greatest safety, because if a man is a fool, the best thing to do is to encourage him to advertise the fact by speaking.”
The fear of advertising one’s foolishness may have inspired the maxim, “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt.” This pithy quote has been wrongly attributed to both Abraham Lincoln and Mark Twain. But the sentiment echoes Proverbs 17:28, “Even fools are thought wise when they keep silent; with their mouths shut, they seem intelligent.”
Still, there is a HUGE difference between (1) having the freedom to speak but choosing not to exercise it and (2) being canceled, silenced, or denied the right to speak altogether — even when you have something vitally important to say!
Sadly, that second scenario is one we’ve seen played out all across our globe and one that is becoming more and more the norm in America for those who don’t wish to swallow the groupthink propaganda being continuously peddled to us via the liberal, legacy media. The Left would extend freedom of speech only to those willing to parrot politically correct viewpoints.
Wilson believed such censorship to be a grave disservice. It not only wrongs the people who are silenced. But it also wrongs those who might benefit by considering what the free thinkers have to say.
More American Heritage Printables
Want more fun printables for folks who love America and long for it to be great again? You can browse through all of our past patriotic posts by following this link: American Heritage Printables. And for more great quotes from our past commanders-in-chief, check out this President’s Day post.
Or maybe you’d prefer a bound volume. If so, check out my devotional journals. The one in the center of the lineup below, God Bless America, was made just for patriotic citizens like you.
Packed with inspiring thoughts from our founding fathers and other great Americans, this journal will inspire you to think deeply about what it means to be a citizen of this great country. What is our responsibility to the rest of the world? How do we ensure the guiding principles on which our nation was established are never forgotten? Consider how you feel about these matters and use the space provided to write down your thoughts.
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