93+ Best Lenny Bruce Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Leonard Alfred Schneider, better known by his stage name Lenny Bruce, was an American stand-up comedian, social critic, and satirist. He was widely esteemed by artists and intellectuals and, after his death, emerged as a cultural icon among advocates of free speech and political humour. Funniest quotes and jokes by Lenny Bruce will fire up your brain and inspire you to look at life differently while making you laugh.

If you’re searching for inspirational quotes by famous comedians that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of hilarious Mitch Hedberg quotes, funny Rodney Dangerfield quotes, and Eric Andre quotes.

Most Famous Lenny Bruce Quotes

The ‘what should be’ never did exist, but people keep trying to live up to it. There is no ‘what should be,’ there is only what is. – Lenny Bruce

The only truly anonymous donor is the guy who knocks up your daughter. – Lenny Bruce

The American Constitution was not written to protect criminals; it was written to protect the government from becoming criminals. – Lenny Bruce

There’s a lot of money in wars, except in the war on poverty. Can’t make any bread helping the poor. – Lenny Bruce

I am influenced by every second of my waking hour. – Lenny Bruce

If you believe there is a God, a God that made your body, and yet you think that you can do anything with that body that’s dirty, then the fault lies with the manufacturer. – Lenny Bruce

You got to pay your dues to get the joke. Besides, laughter is cheap and very portable. If there’s a pogrom, or they’re blaming you for the plague, nothing is easier to pack than a sense of humor. – Lenny Bruce

If I just stuck to pot, I might have found out what a drag being an aging hipster actually was. – Lenny Bruce

When earth gets good and crowded, like 15th century England, then some new Pilgrims are gonna rocket their Mayflowers to a new solar system. – Lenny Bruce

The only honest art form is laughter, comedy. You can’t fake it. – Lenny Bruce

Every group needs a comedian. A comic who is politically incorrect at the Berkeley campus might slay them at a Klan rally. – Lenny Bruce

In the Halls of Justice, the only justice is in the halls. – Lenny Bruce

I tried the religion scam in Miami, so I know how hard that gig is. But, if you can get it to work, starting your own religion is a license to print money. – Lenny Bruce

Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it. – Lenny Bruce

You put a guy on a desert island, he’ll do it to mud, a chicken, a barrel, anything, a knothole. – Lenny Bruce

My only challenge was to tell my truth, man… figure out what I had to say. These days, it’s not enough to boost that roomful of strangers. The young comic spends all their time trying to sound different from the million other jokesters grabbing for the mic. – Lenny Bruce

Marijuana is rejected all over the world. Damned. In England heroin is alright for out-patents, but marijuana? They’ll put your ass in jail. I wonder why that is? The only reason could be: To Serve the Devil – Pleasure! Pleasure, which is a dirty word in Christian culture. – Lenny Bruce

Today’s comedian has a cross to bear that he built himself. A comedian of the older generation did an act and he told the audience, This is my act. Today’s comic is not doing an act. The audience assumes he’s telling the truth. What is truth today may be a damn lie next week. – Lenny Bruce

The reason I’m in this business, I assume all performers are — it’s Look at me, Ma! It’s acceptance, you know — Look at me, Ma, look at me, Ma, look at me, Ma. And if your mother watches, you’ll show off till you’re exhausted; but if your mother goes, Ptshew! – Lenny Bruce

Dig: I’m Jewish. Count Basie’s Jewish. Ray Charles is Jewish. Eddie Cantor’s goyish. B’nai B’rith is goyish; Hadassah, Jewish. If you live in New York or any other big city, you are Jewish. It doesn’t matter even if you’re Catholic; if you live in New York, you’re Jewish. If you live in Butte, Montana, you’re going to be goyish even if you’re Jewish. – Lenny Bruce

All my humor is based upon destruction and despair. – Lenny Bruce

I would become a priest or a rabbi or a monk or whatever the hell was necessary to perform miracles such as taking money from someone else’s pocket and putting it into mine, still remaining within the confines of the law. – Lenny Bruce

Anyone who does anything for pleasure to indulge his selfish soul will surely burn in Hell. – Lenny Bruce

TV is just advertising for your live gig, so I’m playing whichever show is gonna get me the biggest crowd. – Lenny Bruce

Certain things are complete superstition and have no validity at all in the Bible. Yeah. They’re just the antithesis of everything that is correct intellectually. – Lenny Bruce

I’ve talked to biblical cats, and Neanderthals who been here since day one. No one here has even seen the Big Boss. Ever. – Lenny Bruce

To say whatever nonsense comes into your head without any repercussions has got to be a bigger high than heckling a movie screen in a darkened theater. – Lenny Bruce

Never trust a preacher with more than two suits. – Lenny Bruce

That’s where the conflict starts. We all want for a wife a combination Sunday school teacher and a $500-a-night hooker. – Lenny Bruce

Alright, let’s admit it, we Jews killed Christ – but it was only for three days. – Lenny Bruce

You know there’s no crooked politicians. There’s never a lie because there is never any truth. – Lenny Bruce

I hate small towns because once you’ve seen the cannon in the park there’s nothing else to do. – Lenny Bruce

If there was absolute freedom, people would run over babies and charge admission. – Lenny Bruce

Never tell. Not if you love your wife…In fact, if your old lady walks in on you deny it. Yeah. Just flat out and she’ll believe it: I’m tellin’ ya. This chick came downstairs with a sign around her neck ‘Lay On Top Of Me Or I’ll Die. ‘I didn’t know what I was goin’ to do. – Lenny Bruce

My mother-in-law broke up my marriage. My wife came home from work one day and found me in bed with her. – Lenny Bruce

What is truth today may be a damn lie next week. – Lenny Bruce

A lot of people say to me, ‘Why did you kill Christ?’ I dunno, it was one of those parties, got out of hand, you know. – Lenny Bruce

Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God. – Lenny Bruce

Life is a four-letter word. – Lenny Bruce

I won’t say ours was a tough school, but we had our own coroner. We used to write songs like,What I’m going to do if I grow up. – Lenny Bruce

If something about the human body disgusts you, the fault lies with the manufacturer. – Lenny Bruce

The thing with Catholicism, the same as all religions, is that it teaches what should be, which seems rather incorrect. This is what should be. Now, if you’re taught to live up to a what should be that never existed – only an occult superstition, no proof of this should be – then you can sit on a jury and indict easily, you can cast the first stone, you can burn Adolf Eichmann, like that! – Lenny Bruce

If you’re going to stop masturbating, you can’t taper off. You’ve got to quit, cold jerky! – Lenny Bruce

I’ve been accused of bad taste, and I’ll go down to my grave accused of it and always by the same people, the ones who eat in restaurants that reserve the right to refuse service to anyone. – Lenny Bruce

Wouldn’t it be nice if all the people who are lonesome could live in one big dormitory, sleep in beds next to each other, talk, laugh, and keep the lights on as long as they want to? – Lenny Bruce

Every tribe needs a good front man to sell the program. Who better to convince the Middle East to give up the oil, than a brown man with a Muslim name? – Lenny Bruce

Part of the kick of making people laugh was doing something different. We were a rare breed – spotting one of us was like pinning a space alien, or abdominal snowman. There were maybe a hundred stand-ups in the whole country when I was doing it. – Lenny Bruce

Now a Jew, in the dictionary, is one who is descended from the ancient tribes of Judea, or one who is regarded as descended from that tribe. That’s what it says in the dictionary; but you and I know what a Jew is – One Who Killed Our Lord. And although there should be a statute of limitations for that crime, it seems that those who neither have the actions nor the gait of Christians, pagan or not, will bust us out, unrelenting dues, for another deuce. – Lenny Bruce

I think it’s about time we gave up religion and got back to God. – Lenny Bruce

It’s the suppression of the word that gives it the power, the violence, the viciousness. – Lenny Bruce

You are a white. The Imperial Wizard. Now, if you don’t think this is logic you can burn me on the fiery cross. This is the logic: You have the choice of spending fifteen years married to a woman, a black woman or a white woman. Fifteen years kissing and hugging and sleeping real close on hot nights. With a black, black woman or a white, white woman. The white woman is Kate Smith. And the black woman is Lena Horne. So you’re not concerned with black or white anymore, are you? You are concerned with how cute or how pretty. Then let’s really get basic and persecute ugly people! – Lenny Bruce

Darwin’s theory is as dead as he is. Everyone is surviving, fit or not. Years ago, any kid dumb enough to chase a shiny object down a well was dead, and out of the gene pool. Now they got the technology and medicine to save the fool so he can breed more open mouth breathers. – Lenny Bruce

The liberals can understand everything but people who don’t understand them. – Lenny Bruce

If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses. – Lenny Bruce

There are no dirty words, only dirty minds. – Lenny Bruce

Anyone who has two shirts when someone has none is not a Christian. – Lenny Bruce

Freedom of speech is a two-way street, man. You have the right to say whatever you want, and the Boss has a right to tell the police to arrest you. – Lenny Bruce

Guys are like dogs. They keep comin’ back. Ladies are like cats. Yell at a cat one time, they’re gone. – Lenny Bruce

Once the country was settled and built, the bosses changed the order from a stack of educated workers to a barrel of minimum wage lottery dreamers. – Lenny Bruce

Once you take away the struggle for food, clothing and shelter, work is the one four letter word that offends everyone. – Lenny Bruce

You got a million drug laws now because the bosses figured there was more money in putting people in jail than taxing something anyone can grow on a windowsill. – Lenny Bruce

If you’re from New York and you’re Catholic, you’re still Jewish. If you’re from Butte Montana and you’re Jewish, you’re still goyisch. The Air Force is Jewish, the Marine Corps dangerous goyisch. Rye Bread is Jewish, instant potatoes, scary goyisch. Eddie Cantor is goyisch, George Jessel is goyisch-Coleman Hawkins is Jewish. – Lenny Bruce

Every group, every system has a set of values and morals and when you get outside those, then the alarms ring. I was politically incorrect to 95% of the country; luckily my 5% had the bread to come see me. – Lenny Bruce

Faith is to the human what sand is to the ostrich. – Lenny Bruce

There are never enough I Love You’s. – Lenny Bruce

Trying to figure things out was my gig. Without the human condition, there’s no struggle, no pain and that means no laughter. – Lenny Bruce

Let me tell you the truth: The truth is what is. And what should be is a fantasy a terrible, terrible lie that someone gave the people long ago. – Lenny Bruce

Koolaid is goyish. All Drake’s Cakes are goyish. Pumpernickel is Jewish, and, as you know, white bread is very goyish. Instant potatoes – goyish. Black cherry soda’s very Jewish. Macaroons are very Jewish – very Jewish cake. Fruit salad is Jewish. Lime Jell-O is goyish. Lime soda is very goyish. Trailer parks are so goyish that Jews won’t go near them. – Lenny Bruce

You can’t do anything with anybody’s body to make it dirty to me. Six people, eight people, one person – you can do only one thing to make it dirty: kill it. Hiroshima was dirty. – Lenny Bruce

If you can take the hot lead enema, then you can cast the first stone. – Lenny Bruce

Miami Beach is where neon goes to die. – Lenny Bruce

I won’t say ours was a tough school, but we had our own coroner. We used to write essays like: What I’m going to be if I grow up. – Lenny Bruce

The role of a comedian is to make the audience laugh, at a minimum of once every fifteen seconds. – Lenny Bruce

When you’re eight years old nothing is your business. – Lenny Bruce

I’ll die young, but it’s like kissing God. – Lenny Bruce

The whole motivation for any performer is Look at me, Ma – Lenny Bruce

I want to perform an unnatural act. – Lenny Bruce

If I get busted in New York, the freest city in the world, that will be the end of my career – Lenny Bruce

…Catholicism is like Howard Johnson, and what they have are these franchises and they give all these people different franchises in the different countries but they have one government, and when you buy the Howard Johnson franchise you can apply it to the geography – whatever’s cool for that area – and then you, you know, pay the bread to the main office. – Lenny Bruce

Even if you are Catholic, if you live in New York you’re Jewish. If you live in Butte, Montana, you are going to be goyish even if you are Jewish. – Lenny Bruce

I wanted out of the navy so bad in ’45, I faked homo to get a discharge. It didn’t matter that the Germans surrendered, I knew we were heading to Japan and I was done with that scene. – Lenny Bruce

I’m sure that half the buzz from smoking grass was the fact that it was so illegal. – Lenny Bruce

I was a Jew talking about Goyim religion. If I had just stuck to Moses, everything would have been cool. But, copping to being part of the whole Christ murder conspiracy got everyone goose-stepping again. – Lenny Bruce

You can’t just run out and start the car until some cat invents a car. – Lenny Bruce

I credit the motion picture industry as the strongest environmental factor in molding the children of my day. – Lenny Bruce

There is only what is and that’s it. What should be is a dirty lie. – Lenny Bruce

I know what custody [of the children] means. Get even. That’s all custody means. Get even with your old lady. – Lenny Bruce

The crooks downtown figured out that comedy is like a hammer. It can put up a barn and it can knock down a wall. So, they bought it outright and marketed it as Comedy Central. – Lenny Bruce

If you live in New York, even if you’re Catholic, you’re Jewish – Lenny Bruce

Once you sleep on feathers you can’t go back to sleeping on the floor. – Lenny Bruce

What you end up with is outrageousness without the laugh – comedy as electroshock therapy. – Lenny Bruce

I’m not a comedian. I’m Lenny Bruce. – Lenny Bruce

Communism is like one big phone company. – Lenny Bruce

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