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How did Franklin help bring colonists of different religious and political backgrounds...

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rashaad64 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:26 PM via web

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How did Franklin help bring colonists of different religious and political backgrounds together?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 15, 2013 at 12:00 AM (Answer #1)

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The original question had to be edited down.  I would suggest that Franklin was able to bring colonists of different religious and political backgrounds together because he was highly pragmatic in his approach to defining the good.  Franklin refrained from excessively emphasizing the notion of religious notions of the good in his search for truth.  At the same time, he advocated a political understanding heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, seeking to widen the enfranchisement of the civics process.  His embrace of natural rights sought to bring more people into the political process, precisely by stressing the fundamental perfect-ability of mankind.  It is through this that Franklin was able to bring more colonists of varied backgrounds into the ensuing struggle for independence.  Franklin was able to understand that the Enlightenment ideals were perfectly suited to appeal to more individuals and more people in the colonies, thereby increasing the fervor and belief in Colonial ideals.  It is here where I think that one can see where Franklin was the most successful in seeking to bring colonists of different background and persuasions together.

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