In the 1830’s Alexis
de Tocqueville toured America. When his tour had been completed, he made this
observation (and I paraphrase):
I have toured America,
and I have seen most of what you offer. I’ve seen the richness of the fields
and the wealth of your mines. I’ve seen your industrial might, the beauties
of the rivers, the streams, the lakes, and the grandeur of the mountains. I’ve
noticed the abundance of the forests and the marvelous climate with which you
In none of these
things did I see the cause for the greatness of America. It wasn’t until I went
into your churches that I saw the reason for America’s greatness. America is
great because America is good; and as long as America is good, America will
be great. If it ever ceases to be good, it will cease to be great.
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