In December, 1776, our circumstances being much distressed, it was proposed in the house of delegates to create a dictator, invested with every power legislative, executive, and judiciary, civil and military, of life and of death , over our persons and over our properties; and in June 1781, again under calamity, the same proposition was repeated, and wanted a few votes only of being passed.--One who entered into this contest from a pure love of liberty (himself) and a sense of injured rights, who determined to make every sacrifice, and to meet every danger for the re-establishment of those rights on a firm basis, who did not mean to expend his blood and substance for the wretched purpose of changing this master for that, but to place the powers of governing him in a plurality of hands in his own choice, so that the corrupt will of no one man might in future oppress him, must stand confounded and dismayed when he is told that a considerable portion of that plurality had meditated the surrender of them into a single hand, and, in lieu of a limited monarch, to deliver him over to a despotic one! How must he find his efforts and sacrifices abused and baffled, if he may still, by a single vote, be laid prostrate at the feet of one man. In God's name, from whence have they derived this power? Is it from our ancient laws?
Was it from the necessity of the case? Necessities which dissolve a government, do not convey its authority to an oligarchy or a monarchy. They throw back into the hands of the people.
The political economists of Europe have established it as a principle that every state should endeavor to make manufacture for itself; and this principle, like many others, we transfer to America, without calculating the difference of result. In Europe the lands are either cultivated, or locked up against the cultivator. Manufacture must therefore be resorted to of necessity not of choice, to support the surplus of the people. But we have an immensity of land courting the industry of the husbandman (craftsmanship). Is it best then that all our citizens should be employed in its improvement, or that one half should be called off from that to exercise manufactures and handicraft art for the other? Those who labor in the earth are the chosen people of God, if ever he had a chosen people, whose breasts he has made his peculiar deposit for substantial and genuine virtue. It is the focus in which he keeps alive that sacred fire, which otherwise might escape from the face of the earth. Corruption of morals in the mass of cultivators is a phenomenon of which no age nor nation has furnished an example. It is the mark set on those, who not looking up to heaven, to their own soil and industry, as does the husbandman, for their subsistence, depend for it on the casualties and caprice of customers. Dependence begets subservience venality, suffocates the germ of virtue, and prepares fit tools for the designs of ambition. The latent causes of faction are thus shown in the nature of man; and we see them everywhere brought into different degrees of activity, according to the different circumstances of civil society. A zeal for opinions concerning religion, concerning government, and many other points, as well of speculation as of practice; an attachment to different leaders ambitiously contending for preeminence and power; or to persons of other descriptions whose fortunes have been interesting to the human passions, have, in turn, divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to cooperate for their common good. So strong is the propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite the most violent conflicts. But the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society. Those who are creditors and those who are debtors, fall under a like discrimination. All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish, appear to me other than human inventions, set up to terrify an enslaved mankind, and monopolize power and profit.
I do not mean by this declaration to condemn those who believe otherwise; they have the same right to their belief as I have to mine. But it is necessary to the happiness of man, that he be mentally faithful to himself. Infidelity does not consist in believing, or disbelieving; it consists in professing to believe what he does not believe.
It is impossible to calculate the moral mischief, if I may so express it, that mental lying has produced in society. When a man has so far corrupted and prostituted the chastity of his mind, as to subscribe his professional belief to the things he does not believe, he has prepared himself for the commission of every other crime. He takes up the trade of a priest for the sake of gain, and, in order to qualify himself for that trade, he begins with a perjury. Can we conceive anything more destructive to morality than this?
Soon after I had published the pamphlet Common Sense, in America, I saw the exceeding probability that a revolution in the system of government would be followed by a revolution in the system of religion.
Not content with this deification of Satan, they represent him as defeating by stratagem, in the shape of an animal of the creation, all the power and wisdom of the Almighty. They represent him as having compelled the Almighty to the direct necessity either of surrendering the whole of the creation to the government and sovereignty of this Satan, or of capitulating for its redemption by coming down upon earth, and exhibiting himself upon a cross in the shape of a man.Had the inventors of this story told it the contrary way, that is, had they represented the Almighty as compelling Satan to exhibit himself on the cross in the shape of a snake, as a punishment for his new transgression, the story would have been less absurd, less contradictory. But, instead of this they make the transgressor triumph, and the Almighty fall.
That many good men have believed this strange fable and lived very good lives under that belief is what I have no doubt of. In the first place, they were educated to believe it, and they would have believed anything else in the same manner. There are also many who have been so enthusiastically enraptured by what they conceived to be the infinite love of God to man, in making a sacrifice of himself, that the vehemence of the idea has forbidden and deterred them from examining into the absurdity and profaneness of the story. The more unnatural anything is, the more is it capable of becoming the object of dismal admiration.
Since, then, no external evidence can, at this long distance of time, be produced to prove whether the church fabricated the doctrine called redemption or not, the case can only be referred to the internal evidence which the thing carries of itself; and this affords a very strong presumption of its being a fabrication. For the internal evidence is, that the theory or doctrine of redemption has for its basis an idea of pecuniary justice, and not that of moral justice.
If I owe a person money, and cannot pay him, and he threatens to put me in prison, another person can take the dept upon himself, and pay it for me. But if I have committed a crime, every circumstance of the case is changed. Moral justice cannot take the innocent for the guilty even if the innocent would offer itself. To suppose justice to do this, is to destroy the principle of its existence, which is the thing itself. It is then no longer justice, It is indiscriminate revenge.
the probability is that the same persons fabricated both the one and the other of those theories; and that, in truth, there is no such thing as redemption; that it is fabulous; and that man stands in the same relative condition with his Maker he ever did stand, since man existed; and that it is the highest consolation to think so.
Let him believe this, and he will live more consistently and morally, than by any other system. It is by his being taught to contemplate himself as an out-law, as an outcast, as a beggar, as a mumper, as one thrown as it were on a dunghill, at an immediate distance from his Creator, and who must make his approaches by creeping, and cringing onto intermediate beings, that he conceives either a contemptuous disregard for everything under the name of religion, or becomes indifferent, or turns what he calls devout. In the latter case, he consumes his life in grief, or the affectation of it. His prayers are reproaches. His humility is ingratitude. He calls himself a worm, and the fertile earth a dunghill; and all the blessings of life by the thankless name of vanities.
My father being of the Quaker profession, it was my good fortune to have an exceedingly moral education and a tolerable stock of useful learning. Though I went to grammar school, I did not learn Latin..
I had no disposition for what was called politics. When therefore I turned my thoughts towards matters of government, I had to form a system for myself...It appeared to me that unless Americans changed the plan they were then pursuing, with respect to the government of England, and declared themselves independent, they would not only involve themselves in a multiplicity of new difficulties, but shut out the prospect that was then offering itself to mankind through their means. It was from these motives that I published the work known by the name of Common Sense, which is the first work I ever did publish, so far as I can judge for myself, I believe I should never have known in the world as an author on any subject whatever, had it not been for the affairs of America.
LITERATURE Read the passage and answer. (1) Space tourism is a lucrative business. (2) One company found two willing candidates. (3) The candidates wanted to fly to the International Space Station. (4) Each was ready to pay $20 million. (5) In the future, the company will offer more-affordable trips. (6) People will be able to take suborbital flights for just$100,000. (7) Civilian spaceships need to be built first. (8) Some people might want the experience without going to space. (9) To meet this need, the company will offer a training-only session. (10) Others might be interested in a short flight. (11) They’ll have the option to fly just 15 miles high. Choose the correct way to rewrite sentences 5, 6, and 7 as one compound-complex sentence. A. In the future, the company will offer more affordable trips to people who will be able to take suborbital flights for just $100,000 when civilian spaceships are built. B. In the future, when civilian spaceships are built, the company will offer more affordable trips to people who will be able to take suborbital flights for just$100,000. C. In the future, when civilian spaceships are built, the company will offer more affordable trips, and people will be able to take suborbital flights for just $100,000. D. In the future, civilian spaceships will be built, and the company will offer more affordable flights to people for just$100,000.