Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The example of the Founders

"You mention quite a bit how the founding fathers were giving these rights of life, liberty, and right to private property for EVERY person. Even when they wrote it they had slaves and women couldn't own anything so how can we follow their Ideals when they didn't do it themselves?" - Rogue Commenter

Yes, many of the founders had slaves; and women had minimal rights if any compared to their male counterparts. The answer to this question, in my opinion, lies in looking at the culture of the times and seeing how the work of the founders led to the freedoms that we enjoy today.

The early Americans had lived in a monarchy before the emancipation of the states. Most people were used to this structure of society, and felt comforted by it. Freedom scared many, as it did not George Washington was so popular that many saw him as a king, some even demanded that he become the king of America. He had already seen where this system of government had led, and understood why it failed.

During these times, slavery was the norm. The limited rights of women were the norm. Regardless of whether it was right or wrong, everyone was accustomed to this structure and had no grounds to question it. It definitely wasn't going to be changed quickly.

As our country was founded, however, something changed. Our founders agreed that a law existed, that granted rights to men that could not be taken away. Our founders recognized that there was an absolute truth. This absolute truth is what guides the foundation of our law: Life, Liberty and the right to Private Property. It is this absolute truth, that liberal progressives today fail to recognize.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." - excerpt from the Declaration of Independence

Unalienable rights is the key phrase here. This means that we all have rights that cannot be given or taken by other men. This is the foundation of the republic that we live in.

The perfectly discerning person of the day, might recognize that women and slaves immediately deserved the same rights as others enjoyed. The culture had to catch up with the law. The new structure was drastically different from the laws people had previously lived under. People were now responsible for their own well-being, their own failures and their own success. All these changes by simply re-inforcing a few basic principles...unalienable rights.

In short, although our founders may not have the perfect example, they are responsible for creating a system that freed the slaves and allowed women the same rights as men.

Looking forward, it is plain to me that the liberal progressive segment of our culture does not see the founding of our country the same way. They lead with their emotion, rather than their intellect. The free-market capitalist system that we live in today, under our constitution, has created the greatest and most successfully country in history. I believe it is no accident that the world has taken so many technological and scientific advancements under this system of freedom. Only through freedom can people truly find the best solution to the challenges that face all of us. Is it perfect? NO. I do believe it's as close as we'll ever get, because it allows us to address the imperfections in a way that suits US, not those in control at the top.

The system is designed to limit power at the top. As our country ages, almost every administration and wave of congressman have increased the size of government; which continues to put all our eggs in one basket, not necessarily increasing the problems we face, but limiting out ability to deal with those problems.

More government has never ended with prosperity, only ruin. Our founders knew this; that is why we should look at their lives, understand what caused them to create this great system, and seek to preserve what they founded.

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