Religion And Morality In George Washington's Farewell Address

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George Washington’s Farewell Address, written in 1796, was a letter informing the citizen’s of the United States that he was retiring and would not seek a third term in office as President. Nine years after completion of the Constitution, 45 years of devotion to his country, and being up in years, Washington felt the time had come for him to decisively retreat to his home in Mount Vernon (Graff, 2015). Though he had desired to do so before the second term, he felt the country’s state of affairs were not yet in order. Included in his letter, he bestowed gratitude, blessings, advice and warnings for the still comparatively new country. Preservation of Government Washington lays the foundation for his recommendations and warnings by first…show more content…
Though he is aware that these parties are likely to grow, he advises that “wise people” (Washington, 1796) will discourage it. He cautions that in promoting political parties the danger arises of one party seeking the upper hand and that it ignites animosity at the expense of the public. Religion and Morality Washington clearly and strongly asserts that the aspects of religion and morality were important not only for happiness of the people and the county, but also were vital in supporting political growth and well-being for the nation. Accordingly, Washington proclaims, “of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensible supports” (Washington, 1796). Washington contends that religious principle is crucial to operating the government on the grounds that it affects all that are “foundations of justice” (Washington, 1796). Credit and Borrowing Washington next urged Americans to be overly mindful of the spending and borrowing of national monies. He relates this by declaring “As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit” (Washington, 1796). He cautions that credit should be used sparingly and not to accumulate debt that will be a burden to posterity. He also sympathizes that taxes, though necessary to build revenue, should not be
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