Academic journal article Parameters

The Value of Honor

Academic journal article Parameters

The Value of Honor

Article excerpt

WHAT IS LIFE without honor? Degradation is worse than death. We must think of the living and of those who are come after us, and see that with God's blessing we transmit to them the freedom we have ourselves inherited.

Lieutenant-General Thomas J. 'Stonewall' Jackson, August 1862, to an officer who requested leave to visit a dying member of his family.

A REALLY GREAT PEOPLE, proud and high-spirited, would face all disasters of war rather than purchase that base prosperity which is bought at the price of national honor.

President Theodore Roosevelt, 23 February 1907, speech at Harvard University.

BUT WHO OF US would endure a world ... without the divine folly of honor? ... In the midst of doubt, in the collapse of creeds, there is one thing I do not doubt, and that is that the faith is true and adorable which leads a soldier to throw away his life in obedience to a blindly accepted duty, in a cause which he little understands, in a plan of campaign of which he has no notion, under tactics of which he does not see the use.

Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. …

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