Myths about the Founding FathersA most amazing phenomenon is happening in America. While scandals are breaking out almost weekly, engulfing the highest officials of our land and while concerned Americans and religious leaders are urging people of principle to get more involved in governmental affairs, yet polls show a very high approval rating for the very objects of the scandals. It is as though Americans have divorced morality from government service. It is not uncommon to hear immorality in private lives rationalized by pointing to the lives of past leaders and telling stories of similar disgust about them. NCCS has received calls from people asking about these stories, mostly about our Founding Fathers. How does one defend them? What can we say
America’s Dependence on and Accountability to the CreatorWith regard to the principles of all sound religion which we discussed in the last principle of liberty, the Founders were in harmony with the thinking of John Locke as expressed in his famous Essay Concerning Human Understanding. In it Locke pointed out that it defies the most elementary aspects of reason and experience to presuppose that everything in existence developed as a result of an accident or chance of nature. The mind, for example, will not accept the proposition that the forces of nature, churning about among themselves, would ever produce a watch, or even a lead pencil, let alone the marvelous intricacies of the human eye, the ear, or even the simplest of the organisms found in nature. All these are the product of intelligent design and high-precision engineering. Locke felt that a person who calls himself an "atheist" is merely confessing that he has never dealt with the issue of the Creator's existence. Therefore, to Locke an atheist would be to that extent "irrational," and out of touch with reality; in fact, out of touch with the most important and fundamental reality. Those of us who teach the Founders’ formula for freedom in America are sometimes asked the question: “If, as you claim, the Founders really believed in God, why doesn’t the Constitution spell out that belief clearly or at least mention God?”
Eighteen Constitutional Questions to ask Candidates
Once in a while a question will be posed such as this: What can we do when there really is no one on the ballot we feel like we can support? My answer is usually: Then you have learned not to wait until the election to start thinking of good candidates! The process must begin very early. For 2010, it must begin now.
Philosophy is more important than issues
If voters can be sure they are electing people with the correct philosophy of government, then they can feel safer that no matter what the issue is that comes along, the decision about that issue will probably be made based on correct principles and not on current opinions. Issues will come and go. Correct principles do not come and go. To paraphrase one man's counsel on how best to lead: Teach people correct principles and let them govern themselves. As Americans, the time for insisting that our candidates are strong believers in correct principles of government is now.
Educate and inform the whole mass of the peopleOne of the recurring themes of most presidents of the United States is the absolute necessity of making sure our people are educated. They have varied opinions on how that is to be accomplished, but most have seemed to agree that a free society can only survive as a republic if the people maintain a program of general education. Can we not hear our first three presidents say this? "A primary object.should be the education of our youth in the science of government. In a republic, what species of knowledge can be equally important? And what duty more pressing.than communicating it to those who are to be the future guardians of the liberties of the country?" - George Washington "Educate and inform the whole mass of the people. Enable them to see that it is their interest to preserve peace and order, and they will preserve them. And it requires no very high degree of education to convince them of this. They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty." - Thomas Jefferson "Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people.... They have a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge -- I mean, of the characters and conduct of their rulers." - John Adams
The US Constitution in Social MediaIn our Making of America seminars we remind citizens that, since the Constitution of the United States was ratified, we have made more human progress in 200 years than mankind made in all of the previous 5000 years combined. The Founders did not consider this a coincidence. To them it was a great latter-day marvel, one in which Providence played a key role in advancing freedom and the protection of the rights of mankind not only in America but throughout the entire world. John Adams said it this way:
"I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in Providence for the illumination of the ignorant, and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth."