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Franklin, America, and two Virtues

            The beliefs of America are shaped by experiences and the people around us. In America, people hold different points of view because it is what a believer thinks is right. Benjamin Franklin was no exception. As a matter of fact, he was the epitome of someone who keeps his values. He went so far as to write down his virtues and keep log of whether he upheld them. For Franklin, keeping his virtues meant living well. Today, we recognize him as one of the greatest Americans to ever live. His autobiography is a form of expression that is a teacher for the American dream. Even today, we can look at our country and its people, and relate all of our ideals back to Franklin. We can look even deeper and relate our lifestyles to his virtues. Among these ideals are ones that are clearly visible than others. Franklin values his virtues of resolution and silence; it seems that even today that contemporary Americans still practice these ways of living by following Franklin's example.
             To understand this, we will first look at how Franklin practiced his virtues then look at how these virtues are exercised in America today.
             Franklin's virtue of resolution is one of most important virtues of all because it was a foundation of Franklin's great duty to his society. Franklin tells us in resolution one must "resolve to perform what you ought" (92). Putting this to action, we can observe how Franklin constantly has thoughts relating to "the affair of establishing an Academy" (131). Franklin knows that his studying and interest in education is what put him in a position to be successful. Opening the Academy will give his friends and others a chance to receive such an education as he did himself and reap the benefits as he does. His opening of the school is an act of charity because he sees he can teach others how to reach the greatness. Even when Franklin decides to clean the streets, he comes up with the best possible plan because he feels it is something he ought to do.

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