Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.
Woodrow Wilson (18561924)
I have always been among those who believed that the greatest freedom of speech was the greatest safety, because if a man is a fool, the best thing to do is to encourage him to advertise the fact by speaking. It cannot be so easily discovered if you allow him to remain silent and look wise, but if you let him speak, the secret is out and the world knows that he is a fool. So it is by the exposure of folly that it is defeated; not by the seclusion of folly, and in this free air of free speech men get into that sort of communication with one another which constitutes the basis of all common achievement.
WOODROW WILSON, That Quick Comradeship of Letters, address at the Institute of France, Paris, May 10, 1919.The Public Papers of Woodrow Wilson, ed. Ray Stannard Baker and William E. Dodd, vol. 5, p. 484 (1927).