Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Honouring Thomas Paine

Interesting that Barack Obama chose to quote the words of an Englishman in his speech yesterday. George Washington had the following words read to the troops during the revolutionary struggle: "Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]." They came from Thomas Paine who lived and worked in England until the age of 37 when he crossed the Atlantic to participate in the American Revoluation. It is fitting that his words in particular should be singled out. As an article in The Nation ponts out: "When the Pennsylvania Assembly considered the formal abolition of slavery in 1779, it was Paine who authored the preamble to the proposal. Paine's fervent objections to slavery led to his exclusion from the inner circles of American power in the first years of the republic. He died a pauper. Only history restored the man--and his vision. And on this day, this remarkable day, Thomas Paine is fully redeemed."


Multibrand said...

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Harry Nizam

Mark Wilensky said...

I'm a fifth-grade teacher, and an intrical part of teaching civics is providing students with our primary sources: the founding documents. This is critical in understanding what “We the People” really means. Today, as they did over 230 years ago, those documents instill in students the belief that all our voices are important. Everyone of our citizens are given the right to pursue liberty. Futures do not have to be inevitable and "Little voices" can make dramatic impacts on events. That is Thomas Paine's greatest contribution to our country. His pamphlet, Common Sense, spoke to ALL the voices in the 13 colonies during a time of great fear and indecision. He gave a vast number of citizens a vision of what each could do, 176 days before the Declaration of Independence. A belief that power should radiate from the citizens. That message is still paramount to all our students today. For that pamphlet alone, Paine needs to be recognized everywhere as a intrical part of the American miracle.

Mark Wilensky,
author of "The Elementary Common Sense of Thomas Paine: An Interactive Adaptation for All Ages"

Mr Pineapples said...

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Yadda yadda yadda

Mr Pineapples said...

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