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There are perhaps few men who have been studied more than George Washington. His dedication to the founding and defense of the United States has gone almost completely unquestioned until recent years. While it is not possible to undo years of questionable smear tactics committed against our Founding Fathers, this serves only as an introduction so that you can begin to search out the truth for yourself. There really is no reason to rely on the information handed to you by others when you are capable of deriving your own opinion through reading and discernment.
Perhaps the greatest degree of character assassination upon public figures such as George Washington boils down to simple trivialities. When certain aspects of Washington’s life are removed from the context of the world in which he lived and the people he associated with, such singular aspects take on a larger-than-life appeal to some scholars and an overinflated superhero to others.
Whatever your opinion of George Washington is today, we could all learn many important lessons from the man who led a fledgling volunteer force to victory over a supreme world power. Inspiration and leadership are qualities we all seek today, not because we are inept at leading our own lives, but because deep down we all want someone or something that we can believe in. Such heroes are conspicuously missing from our current day and time.
Many of us have been led to believe, also, that Mr. Washington, along with a majority of our Founders, were nothing more that aristocratic white men with a thirst for their own power and dominion. It has been rumored about that our nation’s first president was a deist and not as fond of Christian beliefs as history portends. Why is it so that there remain so many offended by virtue that they would destroy the virtue of men and women who can no longer physically defend themselves.
I submit now a challenge to the naysayers. Simply to prove their attempts at rewriting our history not simply by trying, but with facts instead of hearsay or propaganda.
George Washington was not a god, nor was he as a man of perfection, but he was honorable and a person of virtue. His politics were not self-serving and his patriotism is without question.
As commander-in-chief of the Continental Army, General Washington had much to say about the degradation of morale due in part to a reduction of virtue. It was Washington that instituted the practice of assigning Christian chaplains to the ranks of his men for the sake of their well-being. He commissioned the building of military chapels and instituted regular worship services to be attended not only by the enlisted men, but the officers as well.
These things written, and the things you will read, are not meant to turn your head towards the past in order to return our nation to the rudimentary existence as it was in the beginning. We have come a long way and have overcome many failings that were left to us as an inheritance. Even so, the basic principles set for us in our political founding are rooted in good intentions. It is right to eliminate the failings of a system that did not face the complexities of our day, but in the doing so we should not disregard the character of the men and women who laid down such a foundation. We should not throw everything out for the sake of positive change.
Selected George Washington Quotes
- It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.
- Laws made by common consent must not be trampled on by individuals.
- Let us raise a standard to which the wise and honest can repair; the rest is in the hands of God.
- Arbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of liberty abused to licentiousness.
- Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company.
- Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.
- Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence.
- Experience teaches us that it is much easier to prevent an enemy from posting themselves than it is to dislodge them after they have got possession.
- Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples’ liberty’s teeth.
- Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected.
- I can only say that there is not a man living who wishes more sincerely than I do to see a plan adopted for the abolition of slavery.
- If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.
- Over grown military establishments are under any form of government inauspicious to liberty, and are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty.
- The Constitution is the guide which I never will abandon.
- The constitution vests the power of declaring war in Congress; therefore no offensive expedition of importance can be undertaken until after they shall have deliberated upon the subject and authorized such a measure.
- The marvel of all history is the patience with which men and women submit to burdens unnecessarily laid upon them by their governments.
- The time is near at hand which must determine whether Americans are to be free men or slaves.
- We should not look back unless it is to derive useful lessons from past errors, and for the purpose of profiting by dearly bought experience.
- Worry is the interest paid by those who borrow trouble.