Thomas Jefferson On Tolerance of Opposing Opinions

If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.

Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1801

Everyone Must Act According to the Dictates of His Own Reason

“Everyone must act according to the dictates of his own reason, and mine tells me that civil powers alone have been given to the President of the United States, and no authority to direct the religious exercises of his constituents.”

-Thomas Jefferson, Letter to Rev. Samuel Miller, January 23, 1808

Thomas Jefferson on Freedom of Conscience and Speech

“I am for freedom of religion, and against all manoeuvres to bring about a legal ascendancy of one sect over another: for freedom of the press, and against all violations of the Constitution to silence by force and not by reason the complaints or criticisms, just or unjust, of our citizens against the conduct of their agents.”

-Thomas Jefferson, Letter to Elbridge Gerry, January 26, 1799