“howard: What’re yuh skeered of? You was a worm once!
melinda: (Shocked) I wasn’t neither.
howard: You was so! When the whole world was covered with water, there was nothin’ but worms and blobs of jelly. And you and your whole family was worms!”
“The individual human mind. In a child’s power to master the multiplication table there is more sanctity than in all your shouted ‘Amens!‘, ‘Holy, Holies!’ and ‘Hosannahs!’ An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man’s knowledge is more of a miracle than any sticks turned to snakes, or the parting of waters!”
“Cates, I’ll change your plea and we’ll call off the whole business—on one condition. If you honestly believe you committed a criminal act against the citizens of the state and the minds of their children. If you honestly believe that you’re wrong and the law’s right.
“I’ve seen what you can do to a jury. Twist and tangle them. Nobody’s forgotten the
Endicott Publishing case—where you made the jury believe the obscenity was in their own minds, not on the printed page. It was immoral what you did to that jury. Tricking them.
Judgment by confusion. Think you can get away with it here?”
“You see, I haven’t really thought very much. I was always afraid of what I might think—so it seemed safer not to think at all. But now I know. A thought is like a child inside our body. It has to be born. If it dies inside you, part of you dies too!”
“How quickly they can turn. And how painful it can be when you don’t expect it. (He turns) I wonder how it feels to be Almost-President three times—with a skull full of undelivered inauguration speeches.”
“You make it sound as if Bert is a hero. I’d like to think that, but I can’t. A schoolteacher is a public servant: I think he should do what the law and the school-board want him to. If the superintendent says, ‘Miss Brown, you’re to teach from Whitley’s Second Reader,’ I don’t feel I have to give him an argument.”
“The use of this title prejudices the case of my client: it calls up a picture of the prosecution, astride a white horse, ablaze in the uniform of a militia colonel, with all the forces of right and righteousness marshaled behind him.”
“Mr. Drummond. You’ve got to call the whole thing off. It’s not too late. Bert knows he did wrong. He didn’t mean to. And he’s sorry. Now why can’t he just stand up and say to everybody: ‘I did wrong. I broke a law. I admit it. I won’t do it again.’ Then they’d stop all this fuss, and—everything would be like it was.”
“All shine, and no substance! (Turning to Cates) Bert, whenever you see something bright, shining, perfect-seeming—all gold, with purple spots—look behind the paint! And if it’s a lie—show it up for what it really is!”
“If the enemy sends its Goliath into battle, it magnifies our cause. Henry Drummond has stalked the courtrooms of this land for forty years. When he fights, headlines follow. (With growing fervor) The whole world will be watching our victory over Drummond. (Dramatically) If St. George had slain a dragonfly, who would remember him.”