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18 Inspirational Bryan Stevenson Quotes About Equality, Justice & Human Rights

18 Best Bryan Stevenson Quotes About Equality, Justice & Human Rights

Bryan Stevenson is an American Lawyer, activist, founder of the non-profit organization Equal Justice Initiative — and now HBO Star. On June 26th, True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight For Equality aired on HBO for the first time.

For over 30 years Stevenson has been fighting for justice and seeking to eradicate the racial discrimination in the criminal justice system. The T.V series will be told mostly from Stevenson’s perspective as he shares his experiences in the American criminal justice system.

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Bryan Stevenson was born in 1959 in Milton Delaware. As a child, Stevenson was burdened with segregation, as he attended a “colored” elementary school for his first few years. His family was made to attend a different pool, walk in the back door of their doctors office, and even play on different sports teams then the white families.

His mother protested when the polio vaccination came to town, and the white children received their vaccines first.

Stevenson graduated high school as class president and won the American Legion Public Speaking contest. He attended Eastern University where he directed the gospel choir on campus.  His work in college earned him a full scholarship to Harvard Law School.

In Harvard he worked for Stephen Bright’s Southern Center for Human Rights which represents death row inmates. This is when Stevenson knew what he wanted to do for the rest of his life.

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He went on to be a criminal defense lawyer, human rights lawyer, teacher, author, activist. He is amazing man who stands up for those who don’t have the means to stand up for themselves. Make sure to check out his new documentary, True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s fight for equality on HBO.

Take a look at our collection of some of the best Bryan Stevenson Quotes about equality, social injustice and remarks on the American criminal justice system.

1. Money shouldn’t play a part in criminal punishment.

“Capital punishment means them without the capital get the punishment” —Bryan Stevenson

2. Poverty is unjust.

“My work with the poor and the incarcerated has persuaded me that the opposite of poverty is not wealth; the opposite of poverty is justice” —​Bryan Stevenson

3. A question we should be asking ourselves.

“Why do we want to kill all of the broken people?”Bryan Stevenson

4. People who act in fear and anger make poor decisions.

“Fear and anger are a threat to justice. They can infect a community, a state, or a nation, and make us blind, irrational, and dangerous.” —Bryan Stevenson

5. Prisons are full of people who need help elsewhere.

“American prisons have become a warehouse for the mentally ill.” —​Bryan Stevenson

6. Don’t write someone off based on one mistake you don’t understand.

“It is about how easily we condemn people in this country and the injustice we create when we allow fear anger and distance to shape the way we treat the most vulnerable among us.” —Bryan Stevenson

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7. We incarcerate the innocent too often.

“I don’t think there’s been a time in American History with more innocent people in prisons.” —Bryan Stevenson

8. All hands on deck.

“We all have a responsibility to create a just society.” —Bryan Stevenson

9. We have to go out of our way to be truly just and kind.

“Always do the right thing, even when the right thing is the hard thing.” —Bryan Stevenson

10. It is easy to be kind to the people we are comfortable around.

“The true measure of character is how we treat the poor, the disfavored, the accused, the incarcerated, and the condemned.” —Bryan Stevenson

11. Cause of death is never individualized.

“Our survival is tied to the survival of everyone”Bryan Stevenson

12. Stand up for what you believe in, even if you are standing alone.

“Somebody has to stand when other people are sitting. Somebody has to speak when everyone else is quiet.”Bryan Stevenson

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13. Each of us is bigger than our mistakes.

“Are you the sum total of your worst acts” —​Bryan Stevenson

14. We are more than our resumes.

“Each of us is more than we’ve done” —​Bryan Stevenson

15. Ideas aren’t worth anything if you don’t believe in them and see them through.

“You don’t change the world with the ideas in your head, but with the conviction in your heart.” —Bryan Stevenson

16. It is better to commiserate not condemn.

“We are all broken by something. We have all hurt someone and been hurt. We all share the condition of brokenness even if our brokenness is not equivalent.” —​Bryan Stevenson

17. We only sentence those to death who we fear and disrespect.

“The death penalty symbolizes who we fear and who we don’t fear. Whom we care about and whose lives are not valid.” —Bryan Stevenson

18. Religious freedom belongs in the work place.

“Professionals should be able to practice their own religious beliefs without losing their jobs or being discriminated against.” —​Bryan Stevenson

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If you’re looking for a little inspiration, we’ve got the best quotes to share and savor. For quotes from the most inspiring celebs, activists, and poets, look no further! You might even find the quote that motivates the best parts of your life (and love!) forever.

Kaitlin Kaiser is a writer who covers astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.