George William Foote

British secularist and journal editor (1850-1915)

George William Foote (11 January 185017 October 1915) was an English secularist and journal editor.

George William Foote (circa 1910)


  • It will yet be the proud boast of woman that she never contributed a line to the Bible.

Flowers of Freethought (1893)

  • Doubt is the beginning of wisdom. It means caution, independence, honesty and veracity. Faith means negligence, serfdom, insincerity and deception. The man who never doubts never thinks. He is like a straw in the wind or a waif on the sea. He is one of the helpless, docile, unquestioning millions, who keep the world in a state of stagnation, and serve as a fulcrum for the lever of despotism. The stupidity of the people, says Whitman, is always inviting the insolence of power.
  • Atheists are often charged with blasphemy, but it is a crime they cannot commit... When the Atheist examines, denounces, or satirises the gods, he is not dealing with persons but with ideas. He is incapable of insulting God, for he does not admit the existence of any such being... We attack not a person but a belief, not a being but an idea, not a fact but a fancy.
  • There are two things in the world that can never get on together—religion and common sense. Religion deals with the next life, common sense with this; religion points to the sky, common sense to the earth; religion is all imagination, common sense all reason; religion deals with what nobody can understand, common sense with what everybody can understand; religion gives us no return for our investments but flash notes on the bank of expectation, common sense gives us good interest and full security for our capital. They are as opposite as two things can possibly be, and they are always at strife. Religion is always trying to fill the world with delusions, and common sense is always trying to drive them away. Religion says Live for the next world, and common sense says Live for this.
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