Brief Thoughts from Ben Franklin on Election Day

Since it’s Election Day, here are a few thoughts on government and the citizenry from founding father Ben Franklin:

“A nation of well-informed men who have been taught to know and prize the rights which God has given them cannot be enslaved. It is in the religion of ignorance that tyranny begins.”

“Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.”

“The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.”

“Freedom is not a gift bestowed upon us by other men, but a right that belongs to us by the laws of God and nature.”

One of the great things about Franklin’s quotes is that they always put a responsibility on the average citizen. Too often, we think nowadays that politicians can solve all our problems. And it’s true that they can help – or hurt. But our society falls or rises based on the choices each of us makes in our daily lives. That’s why Father James Keller founded The Christophers in 1945: to encourage people to take personal responsibility for putting the Gospel message into action. So as important as it is to vote, our individual virtue remains the most vital component in creating a society that thrives.

About Tony Rossi

After graduating from St. John's University in New York with degrees in Communications and English, Tony Rossi found a job at the Catholic media organization, The Christophers, that allowed him to indulge his interest in religion, media, and pop culture. He served as The Christophers' TV producer for 11 years, and is currently the host and producer of the organization's radio show/podcast Christopher Closeup, writer and editor of their syndicated Light One Candle column, and producer/scriptwriter of the annual Christopher Awards ceremony.


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