Like so many young people of his time, young Ben had to earn his own keep early in life. He was contracted to his older brother, James and assisted in the printing and publication of The New England Courant, a popular newspaper in his youth. This got him started in the printing trade and due to his eager interest in reading and discussing events in Massachusetts, including the philosophy of critical thinking, he was noticed by people of influence who would help him in his future life and development.
Moving to Philadelphia at the tender age of seventeen, he became the publisher of the Pennsylvania Gazette and Old Richard's Almanac by the time he was twenty five. Franklin is a great example of how reading and critical analysis with open and civil debate with those of all persuasions is a key to full development of the human mind and human aspirations. It's a key element of growth and development which we are missing so much today.
So if you wonder why I am discussing the foundation of this great man it's because of my reading in the last year or so about the efforts in American universities to stifle discussion by those who don't parrot the politically correct line. Seriously, a man like Franklin at an early age learned to think for himself, yet today, despite all of the great technical discoveries we make, liberal arts students at so many progressive colleges require "safe rooms" so that they never have to hear contrary views on philosophical subjects. It would be laughable if not so dangerous to a society which is supposed to be free.
Take a look at college campus activities and particularly at graduation exercises at so many schools. Speakers are featured who support the New World Order, Climate Change, active support for Socialism, yet when a conservative is invited to speak he or she is usually run off stage by rudeness and derision or not invited at all. College is not fulfilling it's main purpose when it allows these things to happen, it instead is killing the mind and destroying the soul.
America is in dire need of a reformation of our education process. Need is great for good technical training for those who have no business being in college and college needs to return to a place which allows students to think rationally and make up their own mind on what is needed from a philosophical and political perspective, not spoon fed by a biased instructional staff. Political correctness does nothing but stifle and destroy that and I'm reminded of the picture of Professor Melissa Click at the University of Missouri, a leftist fanatic screaming for someone to be assaulted who disagreed with her. The University ultimately let her go, yet they still have the safe rooms and the biased instructional programs full swing as their enrollment drops. And as for Professor Click, she was successful in finding a new appointment at another college; I feel sorry for her students and the parents who pay for this stuff.
Want to see a college which has refused to bend to this mold, a school which refuses to accept any federal money with the strings that come attached thereto? Check out Hillsdale College, a small but prestigious private school in Michigan which requires all students to fully understand the Constitution by which this country is supposed to operate. That's what America needs; a real education based on real history which provides a basis for good, moral and ethical living. I'm sure Ben Franklin would be proud to see this fine school in action.
Have a wonderful day and God bless America.