From H.L. Mencken's Notebooks

After dinner, 1997.

"The thing I have always tried to preach is simply homage to facts, clear and free thinking, intellectual decency. To be sure, my own experience has taught me how difficult that is, but nevertheless I believe that a steady effort to attain it should be made at all times and everywhere. The man who tries and fails is unfortunate, but he is certainly not contemptible. But how many men really try?"

Written sometime in the late 1940s.

Taken from "Minority Report", Alfred Knopf, 1967.