Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Post Tagged 'freedom'

Religious Liberty and the Loss of our Roots

If the American Founding got one thing right more than anything, it was its commitment to a broad and liberal religious liberty. In 1790, President George Washington told a Hebrew Congregation in Newport, Rhode Island, “The citizens of the United States of America have a right to applaud themselves for having given to mankind examples of an enlarged and liberal policy; a policy worthy of imitation.” Currently, the country faces a number of threats to religious liberty and America seems to be squandering its profound moral authority it can offer to a world starving for its example. Continue Reading...

Dietrich Bonhoeffer on the Search for Christian Freedom

While imprisoned by the Nazis at Tegel military prison, and shortly after learning of the last failed attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler, Dietrich Bonhoeffer penned a short poem for his friend, Eberhard Bethge, titled “Stations on the Road to Freedom.” I’ve come across the poem before, but in recently reading Eric Metaxas’ fine biography of the man, I was reminded of its power and potency in describing the essence of Christian freedom.  Continue Reading...

Freedom Drove a Car: How Cars Helped Fight Racial Segregation

If you want to improve the material conditions of the poor and working classes, what is the one economic metric you should consider most important? For progressives the answer is income inequality, since a wide disparity between the incomes of the rich and poor is considered by them to be an obvious sign of injustice and a justification for using the force of the government to redistribute wealth. Continue Reading...

Martin Luther King and The Birth of Freedom

Acton’s second documentary, The Birth of Freedom, begins with Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech and ends with an image from the Civil Rights movement. The documentary, which aired on PBS, explores how the speech is rooted deeply in the Western freedom project and how that centuries-old project is itself rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition. Continue Reading...

The Once Great City of Havana

I find the new investigative essay by journalist Michael J. Totten about Havana before and under communism poignant and beautiful, a must-read for anyone interested in Cuba, communism and the universal hunger for liberty. Continue Reading...

Richard Weaver on Liberty and Christianity

Richard Weaver, one of the great intellectuals of the 20th Century, and author of Ideas Have Consequences, published an essay in the early 1960s on Lord Acton (pdf only). Much of Weaver’s essay is worth highlighting, but one excerpt in particular reminds us of the central significance of Christianity in the battle for freedom. Continue Reading...

Lord Acton on Catholic and Modern Views of Liberty

One of the more famous quotes from the eminently quotable Lord Acton is his dictum, “Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.” Actually, this appears in his writings in a slightly different form, as is seen below. Continue Reading...