Harry felt winded, as though he had just walked into something heavy. He had last seen those cool gray eyes through slits in a Death Eater's hood, and last heard that man's voice jeering in a dark graveyard while Lord Voldemort tortured him. He could not believe that Lucius Malfoy dared look him in the face; he could not believe that he was here, in the Ministry of Magic, or that Cornelius Fudge was talking to him, when Harry had told Fudge mere weeks ago that Malfoy was a Death Eater.
J. K. Rowling
Well, let's take what people think is a dignified death. Christ - was that a dignified death? Do you think it's dignified to hang from wood with nails through your hands and feet bleeding, hang for three or four days slowly dying, with people jabbing spears into your side, and people jeering you? Do you think that's dignified? Not by a long shot. Had Christ died in my van with people around Him who loved Him, the way it was, it would be far more dignified. In my rusty van.
It really is something... that men disapprove even of our doing things that are patently good. Wouldn't it be possible for us just to banish these men from our lives, and escape their carping and jeering once and for all? Couldn't we live without them? Couldn't we earn our living and manage our affairs without help from them? Come on, let's wake up, and claim back our freedom, and the honour and dignity that they have usurped from us for so long. Do you think that if we really put our minds to it, we would be lacking the courage to defend ourselves, the strength to fend for ourselves, or the talents to earn our own living? Let's take our courage into our hands and do it, and then we can leave it up to them to mend their ways as much as they can: we shan't really care what the outcome is, just as long as we are no longer subjugated to them.
But about the drip drip of long-haul, no-end-in-sight solitude, they know nothing. They don't know what it is to construct an entire weekend around a visit to the laundrette. Or to sit in a darkened flat on Halloween night, because you can't bear to expose your bleak evening to a crowd of jeering trick-or-treaters. Or to have the librarian smile pityingly and say, 'Goodness, you're a quick reader!' when you bring back seven books, read from cover to cover, a week after taking them out. They don't know what it is to be so chronically untouched that the accidental brush of a bus conductor's hand on your shoulder sends a jolt of longing straight to your groin.
The Dream of a Queer Fellow I write the words again and they appear doubly pregnant with meaning. It is a true and terrible phrase : true, because we are all queer fellows dreaming ; and we are queer just because we dream ; terrible, because of the vastness of the unknown which it carries within itself, because it sets loose the tremendous and awful question : What if we are only queer fellows dreaming ? What if behind the veil the truth is leering and jeering at our queerness and our dreams? What if the queer fellow of the story were right, before he dreamed ? What if it were really all the same? What if it were all the same not once but a million times, life after life, world after world, the same pain, the same doubt, the same dreams? The queer fellow went but one day's journey along the eternal recurrence which threatens human minds and human destinies. When he returned he was queer. There was another man went the same journey. Friedrich Nietzsche dreamed this very dream in the mountains of the Engadine. When he returned he too was queer.
John Middleton Murry
It is a measure of a nation their cunning! It is a measure of a nation their strength! And it is a measure of a nation, " I leaned forward and screeched, "their mercy!" I leaned back and surveyed the crowd and for some bizarre reason kept right on shouting. The condemned you see before you have been tried justly and meet their sentence fairly. They have done wrong and they will pay for it. But I am not the Winter Princess of a nation who does not see that even the condemned deserve to be treated with respect as they face death. You may think they do not deserve it but it is your duty as Lunwynians to rise above their actions not fall to their depths. They will hang for their crimes and you will watch this sentence carried out.How could that not be enough for you?" I tore my eyes away from the now whispering crowd as those close sent my words far, feeling Frey's arm still tight around my middle but I ignored it and looked down at the scaffold. Bring her to her feet, ' I ordered the guardstanding around Viola and they shifted andstared up at me in stupefaction so I snapped, ' Bring her to her feet! 'They jumped toward Viola who I avoidedlooking at as they helped her up and movedher to her noose. Instead, I looked back tothe crowd and, yep, you guessed it, kept right on shouting. "Today, you witness something infinitely sad. Three people who have gone wrong somewhere in their lives, done wrong be-cause of it and therefore are paying the ulti-mate price. Do not stand there shouting and jeering, demonstrating that they were right to move against this great nation, those for-tunate enough to inhabit her ice-bound earth and those privileged to wear her crowns.Stand there and, as the Lunwynians I know you to be, stand strong, stand proud and stand filled with mercy.
we all make vows, Jimmy. And there is something very beautiful and touching and noble about wanting good impulses to be permanent and true forever, " she said. "Most of us stand up and vow to love, honor and cherish someone. And we truly mean it, at the time. But two or twelve or twenty years down the road, the lawyers are negotiating the property settlement." "You and George didn't go back on your promises." She laughed. "Lemme tell ya something, sweetface. I have been married at least four times, to four different men." She watched him chew that over for a moment before continuing, "They've all been named George Edwards but, believe me, the man who is waiting for me down the hall is a whole lot different animal from the boy I married, back before there was dirt. Oh, there are continuities. He has always been fun and he has never been able to budget his time properly and - well, the rest is none of your business." "But people change, " he said quietly. "Precisely. People change. Cultures change. Empires rise and fall. Shit. Geology changes! Every ten years or so, George and I have faced the fact that we have changed and we've had to decide if it makes sense to create a new marriage between these two new people." She flopped back against her chair. "Which is why vows are such a tricky business. Because nothing stays the same forever. Okay. Okay! I'm figuring something out now." She sat up straight, eyes focused somewhere outside the room, and Jimmy realized that even Anne didn't have all the answers and that was either the most comforting thing he'd learned in a long time or the most discouraging. "Maybe because so few of us would be able to give up something so fundamental for something so abstract, we protect ourselves from the nobility of a priest's vows by jeering at him when he can't live up to them, always and forever." She shivered and slumped suddenly, "But, Jimmy! What unnatural words. Always and forever! Those aren't human words, Jim. Not even stones are always and forever.
Mary Doria Russell
Dear Hunger Games : Screw you for helping cowards pretend you have to be great with a bow to fight evil. You don't need to be drafted into a monkey-infested jungle to fight evil. You don't need your father's light sabre, or to be bitten by a radioactive spider. You don't need to be stalked by a creepy ancient vampire who is basically a pedophile if you're younger than a redwood. Screw you mainstream media for making it look like moral courage requires hair gel, thousands of sit ups and millions of dollars of fake ass CGI. Moral courage is the gritty, scary and mostly anonymous process of challenging friends, co-workers and family on issues like spanking, taxation, debt, circumcision and war. Moral courage is standing up to bullies when the audience is not cheering, but jeering. It is helping broken people out of abusive relationships, and promoting the inner peace of self knowledge in a shallow and empty pseudo-culture. Moral courage does not ask for - or receive - permission or the praise of the masses. If the masses praise you, it is because you are helping distract them from their own moral cowardice and conformity. Those who provoke discomfort create change - no one else. So forget your politics and vampires and magic wands and photon torpedoes. Forget passively waiting for the world to provoke and corner you into being virtuous. It never will. Stop watching fictional courage and go live some; it is harder and better than anything you will ever see on a screen. Let's make the world change the classification of courage from 'fantasy' to 'documentary.' You know there are people in your life who are doing wrong. Go talk to them, and encourage them to pursue philosophy, self-knowledge and virtue. Be your own hero; you are the One that your world has been waiting for.