Of all the Founding Fathers, Thomas Jefferson articulated the American creed and American dream with the greatest eloquence and clarity. Though he died nearly two centuries ago, he still has much to teach our country. Since his passing, we have drifted away from the American vision he imagined, and we must begin to find our way back.
Jefferson spoke of the natural rights of humanity, in both the individual and the collective sense. His ideas of government, especially the need to limit the powers of government, inspired the Enlightenment reforms of the 18th Century in both Europe and America. Along with James Madison, he was one of the fathers of the concept of separation of church and, which has been the bulwark of our religious liberty ever since.
But Jefferson's life and ideas teach us about more than politics and government. In his personal life also, he had much to teach which we would do well to learn. He was the quintessential Renaissance Man, able to understand seven languages and making himself well-educated in nearly every field of human knowledge. In addition to being a statesman, he was an architect, scientist, planter, wine connoisseur, writer, and musician, among other things. In an age of mediocrity and over-specialization, we must recapture the Jeffersonian ideal in our own individual lives.
This blog will explore how Jeffersonian ideals can be recaptured for the 21st Century. At a time when America is at a crossroads, looking to the greatest of the Founding Fathers is of the utmost importance.