A good end cannot sanctify evil means; nor must we ever do evil, that good may come of it.
William Penn, 1693
Friends’ opposition to all forms of violence imposes on them the responsibility to seek alternative responses to conflict and injustice.
Quaker Faith and Practice 24.38
From early in our 350-year history, Quakers have taken a clear stand for peace. Their words and action in opposition to war and in support of peace have come to be known as ‘the Quaker peace testimony’.
From a practical point of view they think that force nearly always creates more problems than it solves. Quaker pacifism includes working actively to bring about or preserve peace by removing the causes of conflict and striving to encourage reconciliation.
All forms of non-violent resistance are certainly much better than appeasement, which has come to mean the avoidance of violence by a surrender to injustice at the expense of the sufferings of others and not of one’s self, by the giving away of something that is not ours to give.
Kathleen Lonsdale, 1953