I am not frightened of my beliefs. If there is a God who is threatening me with damnation because I don't believe in Him, so be it. I've lived my life in conscience, and I will suffer damnation willingly in conscience against a tyrannical God who would damn me because, on the basis of the intelligence He gave me, I have come to a conclusion doubting His existence, and I will continue to be a skeptic all of my life.
A library is a place where you learn what teachers were afraid to teach you.
If torture is going to be administered as a last resort in the ticking-bomb case, to save enormous numbers of lives, it ought to be done openly, with accountability, with approval by the president of the United States or by a Supreme Court justice.
Candor and accountability in a democracy is very important. Hypocrisy has no place.
I was critical of race-based affirmative action early on in my career and I've changed my mind. And I've publicly acknowledged that I was wrong.
I think that lawyers are terrible at admitting that they're wrong. And not just admitting it; also realizing it. Most lawyers are very successful, and they think that because they're making money and people think well of them, they must be doing everything right.
I think that lawyers are terrible at admitting that they're wrong. And not just admitting it - also realizing it.
The law is agnostic about truth.
The law is agnostic about truth. It's very skeptical of ultimate truth. That's why freedom of speech permits lies to be told.
Doing something because God has said to do it does not make a person moral: it merely tells us that person is a prudential believer, akin to the person who obeys the command of an all-powerful secular king.
Good character consists of recognizing the selfishness that inheres in each of us and trying to balance it against the altruism to which we should all aspire. It is a difficult balance to strike, but no definition of goodness can be complete without it.
I tell my students, if you ever become comfortable with your role as criminal defense lawyer, it's time to quit. It should be a constant source of discomfort, because you're dealing with incredible moral ambiguity, and you've been cast into a role which is not enviable.
I love discomfort. I mean, my whole life is discomfort. One reason I can never retire is that the idea of just sitting on the beach totally comfortable is not a desideratum in my life. I like ambiguity, I like conflict, I like uncertainly.
There is a paranoid streak in American life. Radio talk show hosts tend to foment that paranoid streak in American life.
I have been defending Israel's right to exist, and to defend itself against terrorism, for many years-on college campuses, in television appearances and in debate.
President Obama has earned my vote on the basis of his excellent judicial appointments, his consensus-building foreign policy and the improvements he has brought about in the disastrous economy he inherited.
In the Pentagon Papers case, the government asserted in the Supreme Court that the publication of the material was a threat to national security. It turned out it was not a threat to U.S. security. But even if it had been, that doesn't mean that it couldn't be published.
Ed Koch will never 'rest in peace.' That was not his way. He was always nervously squirming, while making others squirm as well. Comfort was not his goal. He understood that to be a proud and assertive Jew meant never being able to leave a sigh of relief and say, 'It's over, we are at peace, we can now put down our guard and relax.'
When I decide who to vote for as president, I ask myself who will be best for America and for the world. An important component of my answer involves my assessment of the candidate's willingness and ability to protect Israel's security, since I strongly believe that a strong Israel serves the interests of the United States and of world peace.
The worst mistake you can make is underrating your enemy. Assuming that they're evil - I think it's a terrible thing to do.