Timely Observations by Tocqueville

alexis-de-tocqueville  By: Susan Bea Good

Alexis de Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America” was inspired by the Frenchman’s journey through the United States in 1831. A translated and revised edition boasts eight hundred pages!…not an easy read, but on the schedule for my tenth grader’s homeschool transcript. Since I strongly suspected that she was neglecting the task, I have taken up reading the text aloud, as she eats breakfast each morning.

Tocqueville’s nineteenth century observations are jolting, as many accurately describe today’s struggles. One early notation described the central government’s tendency to become tyrannical as it demands, “You will act as I wish, to the extent that I wish, and precisely in the direction I wish. You will be responsible for the following details without any design on directing the whole: you will toil in darkness and will judge my work later by its results.”

Tocqueville notes that “It is not under such conditions that one achieves the support of men’s will. Men must walk in freedom, responsible for their own behavior. Man is built in such a way that he prefers to stand still rather than march forward without independence toward an unknown goal.”

Alexis de Tocqueville was not a religious man. He grew up in a very liberal post-revolutionary France. His unbiased detailed recordings of life in America are remarkable and hopeful.

There are unique reasons to be concerned in these “modern” times, but it seems that men do not change. The good and the bad have always been among us. The remaining hope is that indeed this nation’s founding was an unique example of freedom and liberty. Though no credit is given to the Almighty, Tocqueville can’t help but observe that the Founders’ faith was the impetus for the transformative idea of the equality of men.

When society enforces the idea that “all men are created equal” government cannot rule! If the rights of our inherent individual liberty are abandoned we lose our freedom to the unkind, uncontrolled, and unsustainable central administration.

We are living in a time foreseen in “Democracy in America.” Centralized government is out of control. It cannot stop itself from growing and devouring every liberty of man. It can only be stopped by man. Even one man! A wise President could stop this. But there is little time left.

America needs a wise leader like Dr. Ben Carson. It needs a sincere leader like Governor Bobby Jindal. It needs a brave leader like Senator Ted Cruz. It needs a godly leader like Governor Mike Huckabee. It needs an experienced leader like Governor Scott Walker.

I don’t see perfection in any of these possibilities, but they are just that… very possibly the ones to lead this nation back to the freedom our Founders gave us.

“For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” (Galatians 5:13/ESV)

The purpose of this blog is to encourage Christ-followers to see God’s Big Picture and be a part of it. Adonai Eloheinu!

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