Dreaming Englishmen and Treason

Dreaming Englishmen and Treason

Our Founding Father’s were dreaming Englishmen who committed treason. Their dream was about about a place that allowed freedom of idea, thought and expression. It was about a place where the common man could forge his or her own destiny. They believed in the hope of that dream so much they were willing to commit treason against their fatherland, family and friends.

We are political watchers in our house and we are grieved by the denegration of that dream and the easy disposal of the liberties we’ve been afforded as Americans. It’s as if because the reality isn’t a picture perfect version of the dream, the immense good that people HAVE in America should be completely thrown away.

Dreaming Englishmen and Treason

We read the Declaration of Independence on July 4. It used to be what towns and cities gathered for. To read, hear and remember. To appreciate that the liberties we experience as commoners in America are hard fought or non-existent in many places through time, history and our current landscape.

So we read, we listen, we remember. We thank God for men and women who were bold enough to be treasonous in the face of corruption and elitism, for those who dreamed of a land where we could pursue life, liberty and happiness, and that they were willing to lay down their fortunes, families and lives for this cause.

Dreaming Englishmen & Treason

It’s not a perfect place. It is not utopia. We have a long history of not living the dream for others we want so dearly for ourselves. But, in my long and involved study of history, I can still say that America is beautiful, that it is the beautifully flawed and beautifully imperfect land of the free and home of the brave. I am grateful to be an American, grateful to still hope in a dream, however imperfectly executed, that still inspires people around the globe to want to live here.

To fully understand what America is all about; dreams, flaws and all check out Humanities: U.S. Foundations– a 2 1/2 credit course including American History, American Literature and Fine Arts, taught by Cindy Brumbarger as well as Government and Economics, taught by Jeff Burdick.

 

Education: Power tool of Character & Virtue

Education: Power tool of Character & Virtue

Scalia Speaks

I hadn’t known the late justice Antonin Scalia was an advocate of education until the cover of the recently released Scalia Speaks caught my eye at a local bookstore. Just a few moments with the book revealed his thoughts on the deterioration of American schools, the sinking standards of higher education, and the need for learning based on scripture and civic responsibility. Drawing on his experiences in law school, on the bench, and with the younger generations he mentors, he warned urgently against following the veering moral compass of our nation.

Scalia drew his opinions extensively from the words and writings of the earliest Americans, challenging me to examine my parent’s motivations in their decision to teach me at home. Each phrase directed me to the firm understanding that knowledge was worthless unless grounded in faith and virtue. An excerpt from Noah Webster’s On the Education of Youth in America impressed me so deeply that I pondered the meaning through the rest of the day. “The virtues of men are of more consequence to society than their abilities; and for this reason, the heart should be cultivated with more assiduity than the head.”

On the Education of Youth in America

I later found a copy of Webster’s entire essay, where he outlined the subjects he believed a child must be taught in school. He emphasized a rigorous study of law, history, and ethics, seeing these studies as not merely the acquisition of knowledge, but of virtue and character.  Along with Scalia, he believed schools should place a higher importance on forming a strong character than a brilliant scholar. Furthermore, Webster did not suggest teaching these subjects to produce a successful career. He believed instead in forming citizens qualified to take their place in governing society.

Character Formation

The message resonated with me as I recalled my parents, who valued the formation of their children’s character first and foremost, guiding their decision to raise a homeschool family. They believed in education as the transmission of Christian virtues and culture to their children, and saw home education as a powerful tool in achieving this goal.

Technology, Skills, Character

In our technology driven world, a person’s knowledge and skills are incredibly important. Yet it is character that determines how those skills are put to use. A child’s moral grounding will provide the rudder to steer through career development, civic duties, and family life. My parents were confident that they could give adequate instruction in the practical skills of learning, and that they would also be in a better position to court the developing hopes, dreams, and character of their children.

A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth that which is good: and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth that which is evil. For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.~ Luke 6:45

Sarah Frederes is a homeschool graduate and a Dakota Corps Scholarship recipient, which allowed her to attend and graduate from college debt free with a Summa Cum Laude and a BSN. She is the oldest of eleven children and has a love and passion for music, parrots, writing, gardening and photography. You can find more of her writing and lovely photography on her personal blog All That is Gold