"Happily virtue is natural to the people, despite aristocratic prejudices to the contrary. A nation is truly corrupt when, having gradually lost its character and its liberty, it passes from democracy to aristocracy or to monarchy; this is the death of the body politic through decrepitude. When after four hundred years of glory avarice finally drove from Sparta its morality together with the laws of Lycurgus, Agis died in vain trying to bring them back. Demosthenes thundered in vain against Philip [of Macedon], Philip found more eloquent advocates than Demosthenes among the degenerate inhabitants of Athens. There was still as large a population in Athens as in the times of Miltiades and Aristides, but there were no longer any true Athenians. And what did it matter that Brutus killed a tyrant? Tyranny still lived in every heart, and Rome existed only in Brutus."
"There is hope, but not for us."
"You have the moral high ground. I can't change that... but I can destroy you."
—Jack Donaghy, 30 Rock, "Season 4"
Rose Tyler: "Doctor, they've got guns."
The Doctor: "And I haven't. Which makes me the better person, don't you think? They can shoot me dead, but the moral high-ground is mine."
—Doctor Who, Army of Ghosts
"I have loved justice, and hated iniquity, and therefore die in exile."
— Pope Gregory VII
"Better early to your grave than late to your own humanity."
— Captain Brenner, Advance Wars Days of Ruin
"My body may die; I may be reduced to but a single drop of blood. But those with Kenshiro's courage will rise time and again to face you; while you, Raoh, will live for the rest of your life but a mere terrified coward!!"
"Boy oh boy. The price of freedom is steep..."
— Zack:, Crisis Core
"The whole world will vilify us now, but I am still totally convinced that we did the right thing. Hitler is the archenemy not only of Germany but of the world. When, in few hours' time, I go before God to account for what I have done and left undone, I know I will be able to justify what I did in the struggle against Hitler."
—Major General Herrmann Karl Robert Henning von Tresckow
"At every step you will hear the bones crumbling under foot, and maybe you shall hear the wind-blown voices of the dead — guiding you forward or leading you to your doom. Yes, my children, the way to the mountain is cruel and unforgiving. And of those who struggle their long lives, spending their energy and vigour in the climb, who then can taste the melt-water of the summit and say, 'Yes... yes it was worthwhile?'"
— First Book of the Astronomicon, Parables, Warhammer 40,000
Catalyst: "Your time is at an end. You must decide."
Shepard: "No. I'm going to end this war on my terms."
Catalyst: "Then you are going to die knowing that you failed to save everything you fought for."
Shepard: "I fight for freedom, mine and everybody's. I fight for the right to choose our own fate. And if I die, I'll die knowing that I did everything I could to stop you. And I'll die free."
"...I may not have what it takes to last for long, but that's okay. Because at least I can say when the world goes to shit, I didn't let it take me down with it."
—Dale Horvath, The Walking Dead
Wan: There wasn't enough time.
Raava: Don't worry. We will be together for all of your lifetimes. And we will never give up.
—The Legend of Korra, Beginnings Part 2