Our Endangered Values

Jimmy carter spoke about values but no more than in his book on the endangered values in America . The values have been diminishing all the time. These traditional values are held more by Ben Franklin than that of Thomas Jefferson.

Jefferson was a man of enlightenment and was interested in spreading a few things in order to drive back the forces of tyranny in politics. He wanted to spread the light of knowledge to everyone. He was very enthusiastic in religion as well as the elimination of superstition. He also wanted the spread of civility and refinement in culture. He envisioned a society led by a natural aristocracy of virtue and talent, not wealth especially hereditary wealth. Politeness and refinement were considered natural social adhesives and for Jefferson were evidence of a moral sense alive in the breast of each and every person.

Benjamin Franklin could probably consider having more traditional values than that of Jefferson because he was more down to earth and didn’t purchase things outside his means. He was the fifteenth of seventeen children his father had. His father could only afford for him to go to school for 2 years and then he worked in his father’s shop until he was twelve. He worked at his brother’s newspaper as an apprentice and soon went to Philadelphia to start fresh. He was known as a self-made man. He not only made a name for himself as the inventor of many items that we use some form of today. He spent a lot of time in Europe . He spent most of the time in Europe in England and France . He wanted to become a part of the English government, but when he was denied by England because he wasn’t a citizen he went back to the United States and was a key member of the revolution by getting the American people fired up.

Franklin seemed to emphasize that the new republic could only survive only if the people were virtuous in the sense of attention to civic duty and rejection of corruption. By this he was saying that people should be giving back to the people that make the nation great. He himself had thirteen virtues to which he developed when he was only twenty which make sense. Ben Franklin though that civil service was very important. Civil service was a requirement to be a gentleman. Being able not to work was a big portion and a gentleman would have to control his private passions. A gentleman was a man who was measured by their reputation. And as a measure of honor the reputations were earned by deeds. They also had ambition in the pursuit of such honor, far from being in a power seeker’s vice instead described as a man intent on living up to an ideal. And he fit into all these qualities and was the most famous American. When he was denied to be in politics in England , so rejected that he felt humiliated by the British Government and he took it personally. The rejection sullied his reputation. This is a matter of honor of a gentleman. He found a way to serve the colonies by attending the court in France .

These things show that Ben Franklin was closer to representing the traditional values that carter said were important to the United States . Ben was a self-made man, a person of virtue that held everything on his sleeve for all to see. He was just another person and that is how he dressed and lived. He helped America Revolution out a lot and even after is death he was giving back to America he helped built with the money he donated. And who knows what could have been if he had been somehow received in the British Government.