More than two centuries ago, America’s founding generation declared its independence from the existing European system. Those patriots even fought a war to ensure their right to think about government in a whole new way—focusing on people rather than institutions.
But author and social scientist Charles Murray has noticed a disturbing trend in recent years. The American system has steadily moved back toward Europe. Instead of celebrating the rights and responsibilities of individuals and communities, Murray believes America is walking a dangerous tightrope where government intervention saps the life from the principles that made the nation excellent.
In the 2009 Irving Kristol Lecture given to the American Enterprise Institute, Murray explained the problems created by embracing the European model. He also called for a political “great awakening” that again emphasizes the greatness of individual accomplishment and reaffirms the recipe for American excellence.
Such an awakening also provides a connection point for people of faith. Believers from a variety of religious backgrounds still agree on traditional Christian cornerstones like personal responsibility, faith, servant leadership, hard work, respect and community. Those values helped shape the founding generation’s view of government, and Murray encourages us to rekindle those values as a nation.
We’re happy to provide you with this free eBook, which includes the transcript of Murray’s lecture.
Reprinted with permission from the American Enterprise Institute, Washington, D.C.