The Founding Fathers Thought America Was Doomed
For those who predict that the American experiment can’t last, and who worry the social fabric is disintegrating at a time of rising political division, it’s worth remembering that back when the ink had barely dried on the Constitution, the Founding Fathers were deeply pessimistic about the future of the country they had created.
Alexander Hamilton called the Constitution a “frail and worthless fabric.” George Washington lamented the growth of political factions. John Adams thought a lack of civic virtue doomed the republic. Jefferson watched sectional divisions between North and South with horror, and said that the “sacrifice” made “by the generation of ’76” was “useless” because it would be “thrown away by the unwise and unworthy passions of their sons.”
“My only consolation,” he wrote, “is to be that I live not to weep over it.”
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