By Bill Federer, staff writer
He sat beside George Washington in St. Paul’s Chapel at the church service following Washington’s Presidential Inauguration in New York City.
He was a Congressman from Massachusetts and helped ratify the U.S. Constitution.
He authored the final House language of the First Amendment.
His name was Fisher Ames.
At age 46, Fisher Ames was elected Harvard’s president, but declined due to an illness which led to his death on July 4, 1808.
One of the most famous orators in Congress, Fisher Ames stated that no one could be eloquent “without being a constant reader of the Bible and an admirer of the purity and sublimity of its language.”
In January 1788, Fisher Ames stated:
“The known propensity of a democracy is to licentiousness which the…ignorant believe to be liberty.”
In his Dangers of American Liberty, February 1805, Fisher Ames warned that democracy without morals would eventually reduce the nation to the basest of human passions, swallowing freedom:
“A democracy is a volcano which conceals the fiery materials of its own destruction.”
In Palladium Magazine, SEPTEMBER 20, 1789, Fisher Ames wrote:
“We have a dangerous trend beginning to take place in our education.
We’re starting to put more textbooks into our schools…containing fables and moral lessons…
We are spending less time in the classroom on the Bible, which should be the principal text in our schools.”
Fischer Ames concluded:
“The Bible states these great moral lessons better than any other manmade book.”
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