The Failures of Democracy (an Ode to Aristides)

Oh, what America could do with an Aristides of Athens! Of humble birth but possessing a virtuous spirit, Aristides championed order and decency against both foreigner and citizen, rich and poor alike.  His triumphs too numerous to mention in so short a space, it must suffice to recall a few: how he exposed corruption in government -- however close to him it lay; his defense of due process not simply for friends, but for criminals and enemies; his admirable conduct on the field of battle, defending Greece against the barbaric Persians; his forfeiture of pride in relinquishing the generalship to a more capable commander, and the subsequent unity of Athens in a turbulent time.  Athens had her share of honorable men, for which she has become well-known; but above them all in the pursuit of justice, perhaps, was Aristides (see Plutarch's eloquent account). But like Israel slew her prophets when the light of virtue shone upon her people's darkened and wicked hearts (Matt...(Read Full Article)

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