Lost secrets of Founding Fathers revealed
By Paul Bremmer
America’s Founding Fathers left succeeding generations a wonderful gift, according to a scholar who has studied and written about the Founders. However, he believes too many Americans today fail to appreciate it.
“It was like [the Founders] wrenched an immense and very amazing piece of gold from the earth called self-government,” said Joshua Charles during a recent appearance on Dennis Prager’s radio show. “But when they did it, there was still quite a bit of dirt on it – you know, slavery, other things like that.
“But what I’m worried about is that the Left, the academia, you know, however you want to phrase it – they make everything about the dirt. And so the great danger in my eyes is that in acknowledging the dirt, we use it as an excuse to do away with the gold.”
Charles, a WND columnist, is well acquainted with both the gold and the dirt. He spent five to six years combing through thousands of pages of speeches, letters, diary entries and other lesser-known writings of America’s Founding Fathers.
The result was his recently released book “Liberty’s Secrets: The Lost Wisdom of America’s Founders.”
“There’s a lot more than people realize,” the author revealed. “There’s the Declaration, there’s the Constitution, there’s the Federalist Papers, which were all of course wonderful, but there’s letters, there’s diary entries, there’s newspaper editorials.
“There’s even books. John Adams, for example, wrote a massive three-volume tome, ‘The Defense of the Constitutional Government of the United States,’ and it’s an immense historical survey basically putting forward the idea of separation of powers. So there’s all sorts of stuff that people have no idea about and which I see rarely quoted, rarely referenced.”
Unfortunately, the 27-year-old Charles doubts whether his fellow millennials would fully appreciate all the writings he has dug up and documented in his book. He shared an anecdote that happened when he was touring the National Archives in Washington, D.C., recently. While he was gazing at the original Declaration of Independence, he overheard a group of teenage girls ask a National Archives staff member, “What’s the difference between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution?”
Charles was incredulous.
“I was thinking to myself, ‘These young women have been in public education for a decade or longer most likely, and they don’t even know the difference between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution,’” he said.
Charles and Prager, the host, both worried that young people would initially think “white male Christian slave owner” if they saw the writings Charles dug up. Charles acknowledged slavery was a “great stain” on our nation’s history, but he urged listeners not to lose focus on the unique nature of America’s founding.
“The United States was the first nation in the world to be established by reasoned consent of its people,” he said. “It wasn’t by war, it wasn’t by happenstance, it wasn’t by conquest. We had a war for independence, but the actual establishment of our government, the Constitution, that was peaceful. It was through debate, it was through reason, and that was the first time that had happened in human history.”
In recent months, Democrats in some states have tried to distance themselves from one Founder in particular: Thomas Jefferson. Party committees in Georgia, Connecticut, Missouri and Iowa have voted to rename their annual Jefferson-Jackson fundraising dinners because Jefferson owned slaves and Andrew Jackson relocated thousands of Native Americans from the South. At least six other states are considering the same move.
Charles urges Democrats not to let Jefferson’s slave ownership override all the great things he did for America. In addition, the author pointed to one passage from his book that he said demonstrates Jefferson was not a racist. In 1861, Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens gave his famous “Cornerstone Speech.”
“He specifically references Jefferson’s ideas, as articulated in the Declaration of Independence,” Charles said. “And not only does he specifically reference them, he specifically eschews them… [He] said the Confederacy is based on the exact opposite.”
Indeed, Stephens stated: “Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and normal condition.”
Take note, says Charles: a Confederate official claimed his racist ideals were “exactly the opposite” of Jefferson’s.
Of course, Jefferson and the other Founders wrote about more than just slavery. Charles revealed that, while researching for the book, he discovered numerous writings on issues people still care about today.
“One thing I discovered is you’ll go through their writings and there’s so many things that are utterly relevant today,” he said. “I actually coined a phrase I called a ‘one-niner.’ Whenever I’d be reading, I’d put it in the margins, and it comes from Ecclesiastes 1:9 – ‘There’s nothing new under the sun.’ You can read so much of what they wrote. They wrote about banks, they wrote about financial corruption, they wrote about what we call crony capitalism, they wrote about moral degeneration, they wrote about education in ways that are simply stunning.”
Prager, who is also a WND columnist, offered effusive praise for Charles, calling him “a living, breathing reason for optimism for the United States.”
The host said he was so impressed with Charles’ book that he agreed to write the foreword.
“So he has written this book, and it is so good that I have to say that if you read three books on what America stands for and its founders stand for, this has to be one of them,” Prager enthused. “And if it was the only one, you would do well.”
To hear the FULL 14 minute radio interview, please visit the source link below. It will be well worth your time.
Respectfully submitted by SilenceDogood2010 this Sixth day of September in the Year of our Lord, Two Thousand and Fifteen.