Natural law, as explained by 17th century philosopher John Locke, is described as a basic set of principles based on the actions a reasonable man would take to ensure his success or his ability to flourish.
Conceptually, natural law is a set of general moral standards based on sound practical thought including methods and processes, which delineate acts that are morally right or morally wrong. The necessity of principled morality in building and maintaining a strong and enduring nation was well understood and a common emphasis of the Founders of the United States of America.
In “Essays Concerning Human Understanding” published in 1690, Locke articulates that man’s ideas are a reflection of his experiences. The future direction of man or the foundation of a nation should rely on moral decisions based on experience. In lieu of experience, history is the only reliable source of human and worldly experiences.
History is mankind’s diary of both good and bad experiences and should be used as a learning tool. Harvard-educated philosopher Santa Yana noted those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them.
Intelligence gained by refined education may serve as a source of reason; however, reason without benefit of history and experience can be misleading. Therefore responsible decisions are those made by careful deliberation and incorporation of morality, experience, history and intelligent reasoning.
Only divine revelation provided by nature’s God is needed for sound decision-making for an individual and a nation. The foundation and fabric of the United States of America and the future health of our nation require these characteristics.
George Washington stated, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports … and let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can exist without religion.
“Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”
The United States of America was founded on principles of morality consistent with the laws of nature and of nature’s God. Now, elected leaders at all levels of government – with supposed elite educations and questionable politically correct experience – have shunned nature’s God and refuse to accept history’s lessons.
A gradual and continuous degradation of national morality threatens the very fabric of American society.
Eddie R. Dunlap