This book provides a complete overview of the American Founders' political theory, covering natural rights, natural law, state of nature, social compact, consent, and the policy implications of these ideas. The book is intended as a response to the current scholarly consensus, which holds that the Founders' political thought is best understood as an amalgam of liberalism, republicanism, and perhaps other traditions. West argues that, on the contrary, the foundational documents overwhelmingly point to natural rights as the lens through which all politics is understood. The book explores in depth how the Founders' supposedly republican policies on citizen character formation do not contradict but instead complement their liberal policies on property and economics. Additionally, the book shows how the Founders' embraced other traditions in their politics, such as common law and Protestantism.
A leading constitutional historian argues that the Founding Fathers viewed the right to bear arms as neither an individual nor a collective right, but rather an obligation a citizen owed to the government to arm themselves and participate in a well-regulated militia.
Describes the myths surrounding the Founding Father's political thought and contrasts their ideas of liberty and equality with today's views.
The American family is changing. Divorce, single parents, and stepfamilies are redefi ning the ways we live together and raise our children. Many "experts" feel these seemingly inevitable changes should be celebrated; they claim that the "new" families, which often lack a strong father, are actually healthier than traditional two-parent families—or, at the very least, do children no harm. But as David Popenoe shows in Families Without Fathers this optimistic view is severely misguided. Examining evidence from social and behavioral science, history, and evolutionary biology, Popenoe shows why fathers today are deserting their families in record numbers. The disintegration of the child-centered, two parent family—especially in the inner cities, where as many as two in three children are growing up without their fathers—and the weakening commitment of fathers to their children that more and more follows divorce, are central causes of many of our worst individual and social problems. Juvenile delinquency, drug and alcohol abuse, teenage pregnancy, welfare dependency, and child poverty can be directly traced to fathers' lack of involvement in their children's lives. Our situation will only get worse, Popenoe warns, unless men are willing to renew their commitment to their marriages and to their children. Yet he is not just an alarmist. He suggests concrete policies, and new ways of thinking and acting that will help all fathers improve their marriages and family lives, and tells us what we as individuals and as a society can do to support and strengthen the most important thing a man can do.
"Kiselica dispels many of the myths surrounding teenage fatherhood and shows that, contrary to popular belief, these young men are often emotionally and physically involved in relationships with their partner and their child. But without support and guidance from adults, these relationships often deteriorate in the first year of the child's life. Kiselica offers advice for professionals and policy-makers that calls for support groups led by caring male role models, bonding through sport before counseling begins, and peer-based recruitment"--Publisher description.
Recent social and cultural changes - such as transformation in the workplace, shifting marriage and divorce patterns, the growth of the women's movement and development of the men's movement - have all served to change the traditional family role of fathers and to force a re-examination of the interaction between fathers and children. This collection of empirical and theoretical articles presents new theoretical models and the results of current research on the role of fathers in families. The articles cover differences in culture, class, nationality and custodial status and focus on legal, economic and policy questions.
"[W]e can't come off as a bunch of angry white men.” Robert Bennett, chairman of the Ohio Republican Party One of the enduring legacies of the 2012 Presidential campaign was the demise of the white American male voter as a dominant force in the political landscape. On election night, after Obama was announced the winner, a distressed Bill O'Reilly lamented that he didn't live in “a traditional America anymore.” He was joined by others who bellowed their grief on the talk radio airwaves, the traditional redoubt of angry white men. Why were they so angry? Sociologist Michael Kimmel, one of the leading writers on men and masculinity in the world today, has spent hundreds of hours in the company of America's angry white men – from white supremacists to men's rights activists to young students –in pursuit of an answer. Angry White Men presents a comprehensive diagnosis of their fears, anxieties, and rage. Kimmel locates this increase in anger in the seismic economic, social and political shifts that have so transformed the American landscape. Downward mobility, increased racial and gender equality, and a tenacious clinging to an anachronistic ideology of masculinity has left many men feeling betrayed and bewildered. Raised to expect unparalleled social and economic privilege, white men are suffering today from what Kimmel calls "aggrieved entitlement": a sense that those benefits that white men believed were their due have been snatched away from them. Angry White Men discusses, among others, the sons of small town America, scarred by underemployment and wage stagnation. When America's white men feel they've lived their lives the ‘right' way – worked hard and stayed out of trouble – and still do not get economic rewards, then they have to blame somebody else. Even more terrifying is the phenomenon of angry young boys. School shootings in the United States are not just the work of “misguided youth” or “troubled teens”—they're all committed by boys. These alienated young men are transformed into mass murderers by a sense that using violence against others is their right. The future of America is more inclusive and diverse. The choice for angry white men is not whether or not they can stem the tide of history: they cannot. Their choice is whether or not they will be dragged kicking and screaming into that inevitable future, or whether they will walk openly and honorably – far happier and healthier incidentally – alongside those they've spent so long trying to exclude.
Jeffry H. Morrison offers readers the first comprehensive look at the political thought and career of John Witherspoon—a Scottish Presbyterian minister and one of America’s most influential and overlooked founding fathers. Witherspoon was an active member of the Continental Congress and was the only clergyman both to sign the Declaration of Independence and to ratify the federal Constitution. During his tenure as president of the College of New Jersey at Princeton, Witherspoon became a mentor to James Madison and influenced many leaders and thinkers of the founding period. He was uniquely positioned at the crossroads of politics, religion, and education during the crucial first decades of the new republic. Morrison locates Witherspoon in the context of early American political thought and charts the various influences on his thinking. This impressive work of scholarship offers a broad treatment of Witherspoon’s constitutionalism, including his contributions to the mediating institutions of religion and education, and to political institutions from the colonial through the early federal periods. This book will be appreciated by anyone with an interest in American political history and thought and in the relation of religion to American politics.
"Christian Faith among our first presidents is either ignored or misunderstood. ... Twenty-first century Christians may see the founders of the nation as devout in the way they are devout; twenty-first century rationalists may see them as secular as themselves. In this well-written, engaging, and handsomely illustrated book, David L. Holmes sets us straight by telling a fascinating tale grounded in the historical record." Richard w. Bailey, University of Michigan; President, Guide of Scholars of the Episcopal Church
An account of America's debt crisis argues for specific measures to prevent a loss of the nation's superpower status, identifying the role of the national debt in the lives of ordinary citizens while analyzing government practices that prevent debt reductions.
Archbishop José Gomez has written a personal, passionate and practical contribution to the national debate about immigration - pointing the way toward a recovery of America's highest ideals. "Immigration is a human rights test of our generation. It's also a defining historical moment for America. The meaning of this hour is that we need to renew our country in the image of her founding promises of universal rights rooted in God. Immigration is about more than immigration. It's about renewing the soul of America."- Archbishop José H. Gomez Archbishop José H. Gomez is one of the leading moral voices in the American Catholic Church. He is the Archbishop of Los Angeles, the nation's largest Catholic community and the Chairman of the United States Catholic Bishops' Committee on Migration and a papal appointee to the Pontifical Commission for Latin America. Archbishop Gomez is a native of Monterrey, Mexico and a naturalized American citizen.
In this lively and compelling biography Harlow Giles Unger reveals the dominant political figure of a generation. A fierce fighter in four critical Revolutionary War battles and a courageous survivor of Valley Forge and a near-fatal wound at the Battle of Trenton, James Monroe (17511831) went on to become America's first full-time politician, dedicating his life to securing America's national and international durability.Decorated by George Washington for his exploits as a soldier, Monroe became a congressman, a senator, U.S. minister to France and Britain, governor of Virginia, secretary of state, secretary of war, and finally America's fifth president. The country embraced Monroe's dreams of empire and elected him to two terms, the second time unanimously. Mentored by each of America's first four presidents, Monroe was unquestionably the best prepared president in our history.Like David McCullough'sJohn Adamsand Jon Meacham's recent book on Andrew Jackson, this new biography of Monroe is both a solid read and stellar scholarshiphistory in the grand tradition.
The fatherhood movement has established itself as the most innovative and effective response to the most daunting crisis facing American families. Written by the movement's founders, this indispensable book illustrates the movement's methods for reconnecting men with their children and restoring the fragile bonds that hold our society together. This book is the manifesto of the fatherhood movement, and it provides valuable insights into the historical, social, economic, and spiritual dimensions of the 'disappearance' of fathers from society. Reflecting the complex nature of this problem, the contributors include activists, politicians, public intellectuals, and academics from a broad range of disciplines. They not only identify the root causes of the widespread withdrawal of fathers from family life, but also offer specific remedies on the individual, local, and national levels. This is a timely and important contribution to a topic of growing concern to all Americans.
Rogin shows us a Jackson who saw the Indians as a menace to the new nation and its citizens. This volatile synthesis of liberal egalitarianism and an assault on the American Indians is the source of continuing interest in the sobering and important book.
How did the United States, founded as colonies with explicitly religious aspirations, come to be the first modern state whose commitment to the separation of church and state was reflected in its constitution? Frank Lambert explains why this happened, offering in the process a synthesis of American history from the first British arrivals through Thomas Jefferson's controversial presidency. Lambert recognizes that two sets of spiritual fathers defined the place of religion in early America: what Lambert calls the Planting Fathers, who brought Old World ideas and dreams of building a "City upon a Hill," and the Founding Fathers, who determined the constitutional arrangement of religion in the new republic. While the former proselytized the "one true faith," the latter emphasized religious freedom over religious purity. Lambert locates this shift in the mid-eighteenth century. In the wake of evangelical revival, immigration by new dissenters, and population expansion, there emerged a marketplace of religion characterized by sectarian competition, pluralism, and widened choice. During the American Revolution, dissenters found sympathetic lawmakers who favored separating church and state, and the free marketplace of religion gained legal status as the Founders began the daunting task of uniting thirteen disparate colonies. To avoid discord in an increasingly pluralistic and contentious society, the Founders left the religious arena free of government intervention save for the guarantee of free exercise for all. Religious people and groups were also free to seek political influence, ensuring that religion's place in America would always be a contested one, but never a state-regulated one. An engaging and highly readable account of early American history, this book shows how religious freedom came to be recognized not merely as toleration of dissent but as a natural right to be enjoyed by all Americans.
Many theories--from the routine to the bizarre--have been offered up to explain the crime decline of the 1990s. Was it record levels of imprisonment? An abatement of the crack cocaine epidemic? More police using better tactics? Or even the effects of legalized abortion? And what can we expect from crime rates in the future? Franklin E. Zimring here takes on the experts, and counters with the first in-depth portrait of the decline and its true significance. The major lesson from the 1990s is that relatively superficial changes in the character of urban life can be associated with up to 75% drops in the crime rate. Crime can drop even if there is no major change in the population, the economy or the schools. Offering the most reliable data available, Zimring documents the decline as the longest and largest since World War II. It ranges across both violent and non-violent offenses, all regions, and every demographic. All Americans, whether they live in cities or suburbs, whether rich or poor, are safer today. Casting a critical and unerring eye on current explanations, this book demonstrates that both long-standing theories of crime prevention and recently generated theories fall far short of explaining the 1990s drop. A careful study of Canadian crime trends reveals that imprisonment and economic factors may not have played the role in the U.S. crime drop that many have suggested. There was no magic bullet but instead a combination of factors working in concert rather than a single cause that produced the decline. Further--and happily for future progress, it is clear that declines in the crime rate do not require fundamental social or structural changes. Smaller shifts in policy can make large differences. The significant reductions in crime rates, especially in New York, where crime dropped twice the national average, suggests that there is room for other cities to repeat this astounding success. In this definitive look at the great American crime decline, Franklin E. Zimring finds no pat answers but evidence that even lower crime rates might be in store.