George Washington's "Farewell Address"

Topics: United States Constitution, Government, President of the United States Pages: 3 (1021 words) Published: October 4, 2010
As it came near the end of George Washington’s second term as president he prepared his well know Farewell Address. He delivered it handwritten to his cabinet on September 17, 1796. Washington wanting to retire after his first term, but was persuaded by people who he say “entitled to my confidence”. With that he went on and served a second term. In this Farewell Address that is now coming at the end of his second term, Washington is basically making known his retirement and offering sentiments which are the result of his reflections and observation. Washington observations were, first, against the dangers of sectionalism, second, against the strife of political factions, third, to safeguard religion and morality as the “great pillars of human happiness” third, to encourage “institutions of the general diffusion of knowledge”, and fourth, to remain neutral in relations with other nations. His warning about foreign involvements came to be known as Washington’s “Great Rule”. Until World War I, the “Great Rule” was one of the keystones of American foreign policy. He outlined the benefits of the American system of government with a warning, jogging their memory of the long debate over the new Constitution a decade earlier. Just as the Constitution had created the Union of the States. He feared the liberty and safety formed by the Constitution will come under attack. For that reason he asked American citizens to put their liberty and independence above any other interests they may have. He goes on to express support to the Union by giving examples of how he feels the country is already receiving the blessing from the unity they now share. He then looks ahead and share that with a combined effort and resources of its citizens will protect the country from foreign attacks and war. Washington wanted them to watch those who try to create distrust or rivalries between region and people to gain power and take control of the government. Washington stressed...
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