Frases de John Adams

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John Adams

Fecha de nacimiento: 30. Octubre 1735
Fecha de muerte: 4. Julio 1826

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John Adams fue el segundo presidente de los Estados Unidos. Es considerado como uno de los padres fundadores del país.

Adams llegó a la prominencia en las primeras etapas de la Revolución Americana. Como delegado de Massachusetts al Congreso Continental, desempeñó un papel importante en persuadir al Congreso para declarar la independencia, y ayudó a Thomas Jefferson en la redacción de la Declaración de Independencia de los Estados Unidos en 1776. Como representante del Congreso en Europa, fue uno de los negociadores principales del Tratado de París con Gran Bretaña, y uno de los principales responsables de la obtención de préstamos importantes de banqueros de Ámsterdam. Teórico político e historiador, Adams escribió en gran medida la constitución del estado de Massachusetts en 1780, pero estaba en Europa cuando la Constitución federal se redactó en principios similares. Uno de sus grandes papeles se dio a la hora de elegir a personas para distintos cargos: en 1775, nombró a George Washington como comandante en jefe del Ejército Continental, y, veinticinco años más tarde, nombró a John Marshall como Presidente del Tribunal Supremo de los Estados Unidos.

Las credenciales revolucionarias de Adams le aseguraron dos mandatos como vicepresidente de George Washington y su propia elección en 1796 como el segundo presidente de la nación. Durante su mandato presidencial, se encontró con feroces ataques por parte del Partido Demócrata-Republicano de Thomas Jefferson, así como la facción dominante de su propio partido, el Partido Federalista liderado por su acérrimo enemigo Alexander Hamilton. Adams firmó las polémicas Actas de sedición y extranjeros, y construyó el ejército y la marina especialmente en el contexto de la guerra naval no declarada con Francia, 1798-1800. El gran logro de su presidencia fue la solución pacífica de la Cuasi-Guerra frente a la oposición belicista de Hamilton.

En 1800 Adams fue derrotado en la reelección por Thomas Jefferson y se retiró a Massachusetts. Más tarde reanudó su amistad con Jefferson. Él y su esposa, Abigail Adams, fundaron una línea familiar de políticos, diplomáticos e historiadores en los Estados Unidos. Fue el padre de John Quincy Adams, sexto Presidente de los Estados Unidos. El 4 de julio de 1826 falleció a los 90 años, el mismo día del 50º Aniversario de la Declaración de Independencia. Ese mismo día, horas antes, había muerto Thomas Jefferson. Paradójicamente, las últimas palabras de John Adams fueron: "Thomas Jefferson está vivo".

Sus logros han recibido mayor reconocimiento en los tiempos modernos, a pesar de que sus contribuciones no fueron inicialmente tan célebres como las de los otros Padres Fundadores.

Frases John Adams

„The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the law of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence.“

— John Adams
Context: The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the law of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If "Thou shall not covet," and "Thou shall not steal," are not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society, before it can be civilized or made free. [http://press-pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/print_documents/v1ch16s15.html Ch. 1 Marchamont Nedham : The Right Constitution of a Commonwealth Examined] <!-- The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States vol. VI (1851) p. 9 -->

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„Without religion this world would be something not fit to be mentioned in polite company, I mean Hell.“

— John Adams
Context: Twenty times in the course of my late reading have I been on the point of breaking out, "This would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it!!!" But in this exclamation I would have been as fanatical as Bryant or Cleverly. Without religion this world would be something not fit to be mentioned in polite company, I mean Hell. [http://lcweb.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/vc006646.jpg Original manuscript at The Library of Congress Letter] to Thomas Jefferson (19 April 1817). The italicized section within this statement has often been quoted out of context. Earlier in the letter Adams explained "Lemuel Bryant was my Parish Priest; and Joseph Cleverly my Latin School Master. Lemuel was a jolly jocular and liberal schollar and Divine. Joseph a Schollar and a Gentleman; but a biggoted episcopalian... The Parson and the Pedagogue lived much together, but were eternally disputing about Government and Religion".

„Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for Liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand.“

— John Adams
Context: Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for Liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free Constitution is pure Virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People in a greater Measure than they have it now, They may change their Rulers and the forms of Government, but they will not obtain a lasting Liberty. They will only exchange Tyrants and Tyrannies. [http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?ammem/hlaw:@field(DOCID+@lit(dg004210)) Letter] to Zabdiel Adams (21 June 1776)

„With the rational respect that is due to it, knavish priests have added prostitutions of it, that fill or might fill the blackest and bloodiest pages of human history.“

— John Adams
Context: I almost shudder at the thought of alluding to the most fatal example of the abuses of grief which the history of mankind has preserved — the Cross. Consider what calamities that engine of grief has produced! With the rational respect that is due to it, knavish priests have added prostitutions of it, that fill or might fill the blackest and bloodiest pages of human history. Letter to Thomas Jefferson (3 September 1816), published in [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0807842303&id=SzSWYPOz6M8C&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=kTAZL3ImRq&dq=%22Adams-Jefferson+letters%22&sig=tVGzBe0XVhXaF2p0FQLGy4GK6bk#PRA2-PR17,M1 Adams-Jefferson Letters: The Complete Correspondence Between Thomas Jefferson and Abigail and John Adams] (UNC Press, 1988), p. 488

„What do we mean by the Revolution? The war? That was no part of the revolution; it was only an effect and consequence of it. The revolution was in the minds of the people, and this was effected from 1760–1775, in the course of fifteen years, before a drop of blood was shed at Lexington.“

— John Adams
Context: As to the history of the revolution, my ideas may be peculiar, perhaps singular. What do we mean by the Revolution? The war? That was no part of the revolution; it was only an effect and consequence of it. The revolution was in the minds of the people, and this was effected from 1760–1775, in the course of fifteen years, before a drop of blood was shed at Lexington. Letter to Thomas Jefferson (24 August 1815), The Works of John Adams; he later expressed similar sentiments in a letter to Hezekiah Niles (13 February 1818)

„The furnace of affliction produces refinement in states as well as individuals. And the new Governments we are assuming in every part will require a purification from our vices, and an augmentation of our virtues, or they will be no blessings.“

— John Adams
Context: I am surprised at the suddenness as well as the greatness of this revolution... It is the will of Heaven that the two countries should be sundered forever. It may be the will of Heaven that America shall suffer calamities still more wasting, and distresses yet more dreadful. If this is to be the case it will have this good effect at least. It will inspire us with many virtues which we have not, and correct many errors, follies, and vices which threaten to disturb, dishonor, and destroy us. The furnace of affliction produces refinement in states as well as individuals. And the new Governments we are assuming in every part will require a purification from our vices, and an augmentation of our virtues, or they will be no blessings. The people will have unbounded power, and the people are extremely addicted to corruption and venality, as well as the great. But I must submit all my hopes and fears to an overruling Providence, in which, unfashionable as the faith may be, I firmly believe. Letter to Abigail Adams (3 July 1776)

„There is something very unnatural and odious in a government a thousand leagues off.“

— John Adams
Context: There is something very unnatural and odious in a government a thousand leagues off. A whole government of our own choice, managed by persons whom we love, revere, and can confide in, has charms in it for which men will fight. Letter to Abigail Adams (17 May 1776)

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„Objects of the most Stupendous Magnitude, Measures in which the Lives and Liberties of Millions, born and unborn are most essentially interested, are now before Us. We are in the very midst of a Revolution, the most compleat, unexpected, and remarkable of any in the History of Nations“

— John Adams
Context: Objects of the most Stupendous Magnitude, Measures in which the Lives and Liberties of Millions, born and unborn are most essentially interested, are now before Us. We are in the very midst of a Revolution, the most compleat, unexpected, and remarkable of any in the History of Nations. A few Matters must be dispatched before I can return. Every Colony must be induced to institute a perfect Government. All the Colonies must confederate together, in some solemn Compact. The Colonies must be declared free and independent states, and Embassadors, must be Sent abroad to foreign Courts, to solicit their Acknowledgment of Us, as Sovereign States, and to form with them, at least with some of them commercial Treaties of Friendship and Alliance. When these Things shall be once well finished, or in a Way of being so, I shall think that I have answered the End of my Creation, and sing with Pleasure my Nunc Dimittes, or if it should be the Will of Heaven that I should live a little longer, return to my Farm and Family, ride Circuits, plead Law, or judge Causes, just as you please. [http://www.masshist.org/publications/apde2/view?id=ADMS-06-04-02-0109 Letter to William Cushing] (9 June 1776).

„No man is entirely free from weakness and imperfection in this life.“

— John Adams
Context: No man is entirely free from weakness and imperfection in this life. Men of the most exalted genius and active minds are generally most perfect slaves to the love of fame. They sometimes descend to as mean tricks and artifices in pursuit of honor or reputation as the miser descends to in pursuit of gold. (19 February 1756)

„Thomas — Jefferson — still surv —“

— John Adams
Context: Thomas — Jefferson — still surv Last words (4 July 1826) as quoted in The Oxford History of the American People (1965) by Samuel Eliot Morison, p. 420; this is often rendered as a full statement, "Thomas Jefferson still survives." Thomas Jefferson died a few hours earlier on the same day, the 50th anniversary of the congressional approval of The Declaration of Independence.

„I have, through my whole life, held the practice of slavery in such abhorrence“

— John Adams
Context: I have, through my whole life, held the practice of slavery in such abhorrence, that I have never owned a negro or any other slave, though I have lived for many years in times, when the practice was not disgraceful, when the best men in my vicinity thought it not inconsistent with their character, and when it has cost me thousands of dollars for the labor and subsistence of free men, which I might have saved by the purchase of negroes at times when they were very cheap.

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„Slavery in this Country I have seen hanging over it like a black cloud for half a century“

— John Adams
Context: Slavery in this Country I have seen hanging over it like a black cloud for half a century… 1821, as quoted in [https://web.archive.org/web/20111029143754/http://home.nas.com/lopresti/ps2.htm Passionate Sage] (1993), Joseph J. Ellis, Norton, New York, p. 138

„I am surprised at the suddenness as well as the greatness of this revolution... It is the will of Heaven that the two countries should be sundered forever.“

— John Adams
Context: I am surprised at the suddenness as well as the greatness of this revolution... It is the will of Heaven that the two countries should be sundered forever. It may be the will of Heaven that America shall suffer calamities still more wasting, and distresses yet more dreadful. If this is to be the case it will have this good effect at least. It will inspire us with many virtues which we have not, and correct many errors, follies, and vices which threaten to disturb, dishonor, and destroy us. The furnace of affliction produces refinement in states as well as individuals. And the new Governments we are assuming in every part will require a purification from our vices, and an augmentation of our virtues, or they will be no blessings. The people will have unbounded power, and the people are extremely addicted to corruption and venality, as well as the great. But I must submit all my hopes and fears to an overruling Providence, in which, unfashionable as the faith may be, I firmly believe. Letter to Abigail Adams (3 July 1776)

„I am therefore utterly averse to the admission of Slavery into the Missouri Territory,“

— John Adams
Context: I Shall not pause to consider whether my Opinion will be popular or unpopular with the Slave Holders, or Slave Traders, in the Northern the Middle, the Southern, or the Western, States—I respect all those who are necessarily subjected to this Evil.—But Negro Slavery is an evil of Colossal Magnitude. … I am therefore utterly averse to the admission of Slavery into the Missouri Territory, and heartily wish that every Constitutional measure may be adopted for the preservation of it. [http://founders.archives.gov/documents/Adams/99-02-02-7261 Letter] to William Tudor, Jr., 20 November 1819. Partially quoted in Founding Brothers : The Revolutionary Generation (2000) by Joseph J. Ellis, p. 240

„The fundamental article of my political creed is that despotism, or unlimited sovereignty, or absolute power, is the same in a majority of a popular assembly, an aristocratical council, an oligarchical junto, and a single emperor. Equally arbitrary, cruel, bloody, and in every respect diabolical.“

— John Adams
Context: We may appeal to every page of history we have hitherto turned over, for proofs irrefragable, that the people, when they have been unchecked, have been as unjust, tyrannical, brutal, barbarous and cruel as any king or senate possessed of uncontrollable power … All projects of government, formed upon a supposition of continual vigilance, sagacity, and virtue, firmness of the people, when possessed of the exercise of supreme power, are cheats and delusions … The fundamental article of my political creed is that despotism, or unlimited sovereignty, or absolute power, is the same in a majority of a popular assembly, an aristocratical council, an oligarchical junto, and a single emperor. Equally arbitrary, cruel, bloody, and in every respect diabolical. Letter to Thomas Jefferson (13 November 1815)

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