Franklin 3


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Franklin 3 Essay, Research Paper

Morality in general is the act of directing the actions of men, so as to produce the greatest possible amount of happiness. Legislation ought to have precisely the same object in view.

- Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin, known as one of the most famous American s of the 18th century, was born on January 17, 1706. Franklin was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, along with his 16 siblings. He became known for his various jobs, starting out as a printer and publisher, and moving on to become an author, inventor and scientist, and diplomat. During Franklin s 84 years of life, he stated many famous quotes which still seem to be relevant today, such as the quote written above. This quote must have been stated while Franklin was involved in politics, separating the American colonies from Great Britain, or while helping with the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution.

Benjamin Franklin was a man more concerned with the problems of daily life rather than his public service. He made many contributions to society by establishing institutions including a fire department, library, an insurance company, a hospital and an academy, which soon became the University of Pennsylvania. Franklin s contributions show that he felt strongly about morals and the happiness of others. The quote explains how morals are concerned with right or wrong and the distinctions between them. A moral man is fair and has good principles. He is dependant upon moral law. Franklin is trying to explain that if a man has unfair or unjust morals, he, and others in society will not be satisfied; however, if a man has fair morals, society will be thankful. Franklin states that legislation must also think the same way; they must realize that they must try to make the people of the country happy; therefore, they must make fair laws, with no discrimination towards any human being. He is hinting that legislation can be morally wrong at times because justice is not always given to all people. Franklin believes that if a man does not have good morals in the first place, he will not be able to make reasonable decisions.

Benjamin Franklin made a very valid point during the time this quote was recorded. Society may have had a problem with the injustice of the laws made by the legislation. At the time, man had no freedom of choice; Franklin was trying to fight for the rights of all people. Franklin wanted people to know that the actions of a man could change the morals of society from bad to good in little time if everyone would work together. This quote can still be considered valid today because morals are still the basis of law. If there were no morals in society, there would be no point in having law because society would not be able to distinguish the difference between right or wrong. For example, a country such as India is considered to have lost its morals due to the corruption. The loss of one man s morals must have led to the loss of morals entirely. A domino effect has taken place in the country because the legislation may feel that their morals are fair or just; although, they are not. Due to the loss of morals, the country may be headed towards its downfall. Another example in today s North American society is the problems parents are having trying to cope with, and understand their children. Parents today do not seem to be teaching their children the same morals that they were taught when they were the same age. Good principals must always be taught to children, especially during today s changing times. Today s teenagers are considered to be trouble makers; although that may be because parents are not spending enough time teaching their children the proper morals of life. Morality was always, and will always be an important part of society because it is the basis of law.

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