Because my thinking is going along the lines of our society, liberty of conscience, and "group think", I am re-posting some quotes that grasp the essence of a free society.....
“Society exists only as a mental concept; in the real world there are only individuals.” Oscar Wilde
“Society is produced by our wants and government by our wickedness Thomas Paine
“In any free society, the conflict between social conformity and individual liberty is permanent, unresolvable, and necessary” Kathleen Norris
The definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.” Adlai E. Stevenson