Morality cannot be legislated, but behavior can be regulated. Judicial decrees may not change the heart, but they can restrain the heartless.
— Martin Luther King, Jr.

Actual aristocracy cannot be abolished by any law: all the law can do is decree how it is to be imparted and who is to acquire it.
G. C. (Georg Christoph) Lichtenberg decree quote

Unfortunately, the balance of nature decrees that a super-abundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares.
— Peter Ustinov

The wretch who digs the mine for bread, or ploughs, that others may be fed, feels less fatigued than that decreed to him who cannot think or read.
— Hannah More

All that the hand of man can uprear, is either overturned by the hand of man, or at length by standing and continuing consumed: as if there were a secret opposition in Fate (the unevitable decree of the Eternal) to control our industry, and countercheck all our devices and proposing. Possessions are not enduring, children lose their names. . . .
— decree quotation by William Drummond