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Equality is equal treatment of people irrespective of social or cultural differences.


  • We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with inherent and inalienable Rights; that among these, are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness; that to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
  • The representatives of the people of France, formed into a National Assembly, considering that ignorance, neglect, or contempt of human rights, are the sole causes of public misfortunes and corruptions of Government, have resolved to set forth, in a solemn declaration, these natural, imprescriptible, and inalienable rights; that this declaration being constantly present to the minds of the members of the body social, they may be ever kept attentive to their rights and their duties; that the acts of the legislative and executive powers of Government, being capable of being every moment compared with the end of political institutions, may be more respected; and also, that the future claims of the citizens, being directed by simple and incontestable principles, may always tend to the maintenance of the Constitution, and the general happiness. For these reasons the National Assembly doth recognize and declare, in the presence of the Supreme Being and with the hope of his blessing and favor, the following sacred rights of men and of citizens:

    I. Men are born, and always continue, free and equal in respect of their rights. Civil distinctions, therefore, can be founded only on public utility.
  • Equality, in a social sense, may be divided into that of condition and that of rights. Equality of condition is incompatible with civilization, and is found only to exist in those communities that are but slightly removed from the savage state. In practice, it can only mean a common misery
  • The Elgin writer says that we shall "jeopardize the best interests of the Socialist Party" if we insist upon the political equality of the Negro. I say that the Socialist Party would be false to its historic mission, violate the fundamental principles of Socialism, deny its philosophy and repudiate its own teachings if, on account of race considerations, it sought to exclude any human being from political equality and economic freedom. Then, indeed, would it not only "jeopardize" its best interests, but forfeit its very life, for it would soon be scorned and deserted as a thing unclean, leaving but a stench in the nostrils of honest men.
  • Legislation to apply the principle of equal pay for equal work without discrimination because of sex is a matter of simple justice.
    • Dwight D. Eisenhower, annual message to the Congress on the State of the Union, January 5, 1956. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1956, p. 23. Read before a joint session of Congress by a clerk of the House of Representatives.
  • I know very well that we are not all equal, nor can be so; but it is my opinion that he who deems it important to keep aloof from the so-called rabble, in order to maintain their respect, is as much to blame as a coward who hides himself from his enemy because he fears defeat.
  • For if all things were equally in all men, nothing would be prized.
  • La majestueuse égalité des lois, qui interdit au riche comme au pauvre de coucher sous les ponts, de mendier dans les rues et de voler du pain.
    • The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.
    • Le Lys Rouge [The Red Lily] (1894), chapter 7. Variant: How noble the law, in its majestic equality, that both the rich and poor are equally prohibited from peeing in the streets, sleeping under bridges, and stealing bread!
  • Fourscore and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
  • Among unequals what society
    Can sort, what harmony, or true delight?
  • All animals are equal
    But some animals are more equal than others
  • In regard to this principle, that all men are born free and equal, if there is an animal on earth to which it does not apply—that is not born free, it is man—he is born in a state of the most abject want, and in a state of perfect helplessness and ignorance, which is the foundation of the connubial tie…. Who should say that all the soil in the world is equally rich, the first rate land in Kentucky and the Highlands of Scotland because the superficial content of the acre is the same, would be just as right as he who should maintain the absolute equality of man in virtue of his birth. The ricketty and scrofulous little wretch who first sees the light in a work-house, or in a brothel, and who feels the effects of alcohol before the effects of vital air, is not equal in any respect to the ruddy offspring of the honest yeoman; nay, I will go further, and say that a prince, provided he is no better born than royal blood will make him, is not equal to the healthy son of a peasant.
    • John Randolph of Roanoke, remarks in the Senate, Register of Debates, vol. 2, March 2, 1826, col. 126.
  • In terms of earthly life as you understand it, it is overly optimistic to imagine that eventually all illnesses will be conquered, all relationships be inevitably fulfilling, or to foresee a future in which all people on earth are treated with equality and respect.
  • Heralds, from off our towers we might behold,
    From first to last, the onset and retire
    Of both your armies; whose equality
    By our best eyes cannot be censured:
    Blood hath bought blood and blows have answer'd blows;
    Strength match'd with strength, and power confronted power:
    Both are alike; and both alike we like.
  • She in beauty, education, blood,
    Holds hand with any princess of the world.
  • Equality is the life of conversation; and he is as much out who assumes to himself any part above another, as he who considers himself below the rest of the society.
  • It is not true that equality is a law of nature. Nature has made nothing equal; her sovereign law is subordination and dependence.
  • [E]quality is not the empirical claim that all groups of humans are interchangeable; it is the moral principle that individuals should not be judged or constrained by the average properties of their group. … If we recognize this principle, no one has to spin myths about the indistinguishability of the sexes to justify equality.
  • Dogs look up to you, cats look down on you. Give me a pig! He looks you in the eye and treats you as an equal.
    • As cited in Churchill by Himself (2008), ed. Langworth, PublicAffairs, p. 535 ISBN 1586486381

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations[edit]

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 235-36.
  • Men are made by nature unequal. It is vain, therefore, to treat them as if they were equal.
  • Sir, your levellers wish to level down as far as themselves: but they cannot bear levelling up to themselves.
  • For the colonel's lady an' Judy O'Grady,
    Are sisters under their skins.
  • Par in parem imperium non habet.
    • An equal has no power over an equal.
    • Law Maxim.
  • Quod ad jus naturale attinet, omnes homines æquales sunt.
    • All men are equal before the natural law.
    • Law Maxim.
  • Et sceleratis sol oritur.
  • The trickling rain doth fall
    Upon us one and all;
    The south-wind kisses
    The saucy milkmaid's cheek,
    The nun's, demure and meek,
    Nor any misses.
  • The tall, the wise, the reverend head,
    Must be as low as ours.
    • Isaac Watts, Hymns and Spiritual Songs, Book II, Hymn 63.

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