Posts Tagged 'Declaration of Independence'

Justice Kennedy: ‘We must know our heritage and our history’

Justice Kennedy: ‘We must know our heritage and our history’

In the eyes of Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Americans take their freedom for granted. As he spoke to the Chautauquans packed in and around the Hall of Philosophy at 3:30 p.m. Monday, he drew upon history and tradition to illustrate how vital it is that Americans engage in the discussion of freedom.
He admitted that in his younger years, he thought democracy could be given like a gift. He joked that some people think they can introduce democracy to a country, wipe their hands and say goodbye, and then democracy will be magically “installed.”

Rawlings: ‘American democracy not derived from Athenians’

Rawlings: ‘American democracy not derived from Athenians’

The prominent figures of Athenian society — Socrates, Aristotle, Plato — are widely considered to be the forerunners of American democracy. But according to Hunter Rawlings, classicist and president of the Association of the American Universities, these giants of history had little influence on Thomas Jefferson and the writing of the Declaration of Independence — and thus little influence on the democracy Americans enjoy today.

Rawlings’ 10:45 a.m. morning lecture in the Amphitheater was preceded by a performance by Bill Barker, a Thomas Jefferson interpreter dressed in full 18th-century regalia, complete with a tri-corner hat.

Dionne: ‘Liberty depends on strong communities, energetic government and a concern for the common good’

Dionne: ‘Liberty depends on strong communities, energetic government and a concern for the common good’

Is immunizing children against disease an investment in human capital? E.J. Dionne believes that it is. But he also believes that immunizing children is a moral issue, not something that should be understood in market language.

“I think distorting language in this way concedes what should not be conceded — that the market represents the one and only proper measure of public action,” he said.

Dionne calls on American history for talk on markets, morals

Dionne calls on American history for talk on markets, morals

The Declaration of Independence was more than just a break-up letter with England. It was an assertion of independence, a commitment to freedom and a symbol of the good of democracy defeating the evil of tyranny.

E.J. Dionne Jr. doesn’t question that. But he would rather the focus shift from the idea of individual independence to what he believes the declaration really was: A pledge of community members to one another.