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The first duty of government is the protection of life...(Spurious Quotation)

Quotation: "The first duty of government is the protection of life, not its destruction.  Abandon that, and you have abandoned all."

Variations:

  1. "The chief purpose of government is to protect life.  Abandon that, and you have abandoned all."

Sources consulted:

  1. Papers of Thomas Jefferson
  2. Thomas Jefferson retirement papers
  3. Thomas Jefferson: Papers and Biographies collections in Hathi Trust Digital Library

Earliest appearance in print found: 19891

Comments: This quotation has not been found in the writings of Thomas Jefferson.

- Anna Berkes, December 29, 2011

 

  • 1. George Grant, Trial and Error: The American Civil Liberties Union and Its Effect on Your Family (Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1989), 85.
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