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Only Human (Themis Files, #3) Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel
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Only Human Quotes Showing 1-20 of 20
“I hate this world. People are small. They’re ignorant, and they’re happy to stay that way. They make an effort to. They’ll spend time and energy finding ways not to learn things just to feel comfortable with their beliefs.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“People are denying even the most basic scientific facts because it makes them feel better about hurting each other. Do you realize how horrifying that is? We’re talking about human beings making a conscious effort, going out of their way, to be ignorant. Willfully stupid. They’re proud of it. They take pride in idiocy. There’s not even an attempt to rationalize things anymore.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“I can’t make the forest grow faster because I want it to. I can’t will it to grow. It takes time.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“If you see something wrong with the world, fix it. But what if it’s the whole world that needs fixing?”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“There’s this tendency for people to see any fight against the system as a fight for progress. As if the people before them couldn’t possibly have gotten anything right. If you’re using bombs instead of words, that means you’re banking on people giving you what you want out of fear instead of reason. That’s never a good sign.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“They're saying the system is rigged against them. I'm saying they're not even a part of it, not in a meaningful sense anyway. They've been sold an illusion of democracy. And they bought it! They really bought it. They don't want to get rid of the system. They're asking for more representation in it. They don't even realize that the whole thing is built to keep them out.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“I couldn’t understand why people keep voting for the very people they loathe. They’ll protest a war, but the everyday stuff, small injustices, they just let them slide. Friends making a fortune off government contracts, paying a hundred dollars for a pencil, that type of thing, people complain about it, everyone does, but they won’t do a thing. I remember how floored I was when he told me that was a good thing, how we need a certain level of cynicism for society to function properly. If people thought they had real power to change things, if they truly believed in democracy, everyone would take to the streets, advocate, militate for everything. It happens from time to time. Thirty thousand people will block traffic to march for a cause, but they do it believing that the other side couldn’t possibly feel justified in doing the same thing. What if they did? What if thirty thousand people who believe in one thing marched at the very same time as those who believe in the exact opposite? What if it happened every single day? People who care about other things would also want to be heard. They’d need to scream louder. They’d need their disruption to be more…disruptive. People are compliant because they don’t expect the system to be fair. If they did, if they thought that was even possible, we’d live in chaos, anarchy. We need apathy, he said, or we’ll end up killing each other on the streets.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“The moral of the story is…Jeff is a moron. A baby axolotl can’t fight a fish! You can’t expect babies to do the things adults do. You can’t expect anyone to do things they can’t do. If you ask me to lift five hundred pounds, I can’t. It doesn’t matter how much I want to, how much conviction I put into it. It’s just not something I can do. Maybe if I’d been training all my life, but not now, not tomorrow.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“I'm a scientist. I find beauty in absolutes. I love the clarity of math, its unwavering dependability. Math will never say one thing and do another one. It will never harm you on purpose because its only purpose is truth.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“They'll protest war, but the everyday stuff, small injustices, they just let them slide. Friends making a fortune off government contracts, paying a hundred dollars for a pencil, that type of thing, people complain about it, everyone does, but they won't do a thing. I remember how floored I was when he told me it was a good thing, how we need a certain level of cynicism for society to function.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“Muslims are bad because they are, that’s all. Why would you need a reason? It’s one thing to let your child go blind because you read on Facebook that the measles vaccine would make him autistic, it’s another to ship him off to a work camp because he inherited his grandmother’s genes instead of Grandpa’s. Our entire race is trying to lobotomize itself. It’s as moronic and repulsive as someone cutting off their own legs.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“Hey! Can you hear me? I’m talking to the American asshole who just told my daughter she was going to die. She says you put something inside her head, some sort of explosive. If that’s true, you better hope that thing doesn’t go off because if it does, you might as well kill yourself. I know what you’re thinking. There’s a good chance Moscow will do the same thing and kill me. There’s always a possibility the Chinese or Koreans will kill me, but I wouldn’t bet on that. You see, I’m not the easiest person to be with. I can be a bit of a dick sometimes, just ask my daughter. My point is if people keep me around, it’s not because of my charming personality, it’s because I have legs that bend the wrong way, and that’s kind of useful if you also happen to have Themis. So on the off chance that I make it through this, I want you to listen to me very carefully. I don’t give a shit who this robot belongs to an hour from now. I will fucking kill you. I will mow down whatever place you work at and the house you live in. I will kill everyone you’ve ever known, your high-school teacher, people you play softball with. I will march down Washington Avenue and turn DC into a fucking sandbox. I will end you and everything you hold dear. There. Will. Be. No United States when I’m done with you, and there is nothing, not a goddamn thing, you can do to stop me. Do you hear me? DO YOU HEAR ME, MOTHERFUCKER? ANSWER ME!”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“If you see something wrong with the world, fix it. Fight. Resist. Don’t use cardboard.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“People are compliant because they don't expect the system to be fair.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“They have me in a bunk next to this guy, Bilal. He’s just a year older than me. He—this is nuts—he studied plant biology in Helsinki. He worked in a bar to pay for school. There’s nothing special about him. Not his DNA. He’s not even Muslim. He’s a Hindu, but he was born in Pakistan, so…It’s pathetic. These people can’t even do racist right.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“—Say she gets what she wants, and the regions give her more power. It would likely be temporary, right?

—Probably.

—Well, my guess is she doesn’t want it to be temporary. She’ll want to hit them hard. Arrest as many people as she can. Make sure no one dares to even put up a sign after that.

—Wouldn’t that just encourage the people blowing up things to blow up more things?

—Well, she’d have to get them too. All of them.

—On the planet? You can’t defeat terrorism on a whole planet, it’s not an army you can crush. That’s why it’s called terrorism. There’d always be one person left somewhere to blow up more things.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“—Finally, he spotted an Asian carp coming their way. The carp wasn’t as big as the elephantine tilapia he had once wrestled, but Lisa was young, and Jeff figured that vanquishing a midsize carp would be enough for someone her age. Jeff hugged his baby girl, gave her a big kiss, and threw her off the rock, right in the path of the bottom feeder.
The moral of the story is—

—Wait! Wait! What happened? What happened to Lisa?

—The carp ate her, of course. She was just a baby! You didn’t really think she was gonna make it, did you?

—I…Yes, I did…”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“I remember having that conversation with my dad. Not Vincent, my adoptive dad in Puerto Rico. I asked him why people complained about politics all the time but did absolutely nothing about it. I couldn’t understand why people keep voting for the very people they loathe. They’ll protest a war, but the everyday stuff, small injustices, they just let them slide. Friends making a fortune off government contracts, paying a hundred dollars for a pencil, that type of thing, people complain about it, everyone does, but they won’t do a thing. I remember how floored I was when he told me that was a good thing, how we need a certain level of cynicism for society to function properly. If people thought they had real power to change things, if they truly believed in democracy, everyone would take to the streets, advocate, militate for everything. It happens from time to time. Thirty thousand people will block traffic to march for a cause, but they do it believing that the other side couldn’t possibly feel justified in doing the same thing. What if they did? What if thirty thousand people who believe in one thing marched at the very same time as those who believe in the exact opposite? What if it happened every single day? People who care about other things would also want to be heard. They’d need to scream louder. They’d need their disruption to be more…disruptive. People are compliant because they don’t expect the system to be fair. If they did, if they thought that was even possible, we’d live in chaos, anarchy. We need apathy, he said, or we’ll end up killing each other on the streets.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“What does a man’s life amount to? What does the life of a thousand, a billion? What is an ant’s life worth? I see now that the answer is irrelevant. It’s the question that matters. Should the ant let itself die, crushed under the weight of its own insignificance? Or should it live, fight giants, and build magnificent cities underground? What do I choose?”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human
“You build a revolution on ideas. If the population doesn't buy your ideas, it means they're not ready, or you're wrong. There's this tendency for people to see any fight against the system as a fight for progress. As if the people before them couldn't possibly have gotten anything right. If you're using bombs instead of words, that means you're banking on people giving you what you want out of fear instead of reason. That's never a good sign.”
Sylvain Neuvel, Only Human