Terry Paulson at Townhall in Honoring America's Founding Principles asks:
Must America’s founding principles be changed to meet the challenges of our age? Are we defined by a place and a people or by the shared principles we embrace and preserve?
Of course not! These quotes from our founding fathers present that case eloquently, without a need for embellishment:
Thomas Jefferson affirmed, "What is necessary to make us a happy and prosperous people? A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. Were we directed from Washington when to sow, and when to reap, we should soon want bread. I own, I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive. If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy."
Benjamin Franklin warned, “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty or safety.”
John Adams asserted, “Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
George Washington added, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who would labor to subvert these great pillars…. Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion.”
Benjamin Franklin criticized England’s welfare entitlements of his time, “There is no country in the world in which the poor are more idle, dissolute, drunken, and insolent…. You offered a premium for the encouragement of idleness, and you should not now wonder that it has had its effect in the increase of poverty.”
Franklin preferred “responsible” caring: "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it…. Repeal that law (taxes), and you will soon see a change in their manners. Labor…will again be looked upon as a respectable precept; industry will increase, and with it plenty among the lower people; their circumstances will mend, and more will be done for their happiness by inuring them to provide for themselves, than could be done by dividing all your estates among them."
Finally, George Washington reminded all in his first address to Congress, “To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace.”
Paulson closers far better than I would with:
Property rights, earned reward, individual responsibility, religious freedom, limited government, a strong military, and “we the people” empowered to turn liberty into our own version of the American Dream are what our Founding Fathers left as a legacy. In November, you’ll have the opportunity to define true north for the future of this great country. Pick your values compass wisely. Our future depends on it.