Donald Trump has made many references to our founding fathers, stating on more than one occasion that they would approve of his right-wing, pro-life stance and promising to appoint justices to the Supreme Court who would interpret the Constitution as the founding fathers “would have wanted”:
The justices that I’m going to appoint will be pro-life, they will have a conservative vent. They will interpret the Constitution the way the founders wanted it interpreted
Which made us wonder, what WOULD the founding fathers really have thought of Donald J. Trump? Would a group of well-educated bibliophiles, authors, and scientists have even socialized with the likes of Trump?
Here are five quotes that we believe made the founding fathers’ feelings clear about men like our current president:
1. Thomas Jefferson: Jefferson was not only a founding father, he was an educated scientist who eschewed many of the stories in the Bible as “contrary to reason.” Jefferson would have hated Trump’s blatant denial of scientific facts, but would never have taken to insulting Trump personally just because they disagreed. Jefferson had a great respect for freedom of expression and religion, saying:
I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.
Seems like a big difference from Trump’s current strategy of attacking anyone who dares disagree with him.
2. George Washington: Like Trump, George Washington was very concerned about how people perceived him. Unlike Trump, it was of great importance to Washington that he conduct himself like a statesman at all times, and he strove to conduct the business of the government without petty partisan name-calling. While Trump frantically surrounds himself with anyone who will pet him and tell him how amazing he is, Washington had this to say about choosing your companions:
Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for ‘tis better to be alone than in bad company.
I think we all know how Trump feels about this one–he would rather be on the front page of every paper for some horrific scandal than spend one second out of the spotlight.
3. John Adams: Like most of our founding fathers, John Adams was a big fan of facts, education, and knowledge. Trump’s blatant ignorance and “alternative facts” would probably have him rolling in his grave. Adams once had this to say about the importance of factual information:
Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they can not alter the state of facts and evidence.
Ouch. Sorry, Mr. Trump. Sounds like the founding fathers would not approve of your penchant for just blatantly making sh*t up.
4. Benjamin Franklin: Franklin was an author, printer, political theorist, politician, Freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat. Perhaps the most respected of our founding fathers for all of his contributions to society, Franklin once stated that “well done is better than well said.” Which seems to be the opposite of Trump’s apparent motto: “Well said means it was actually done, even if it wasn’t.” Franklin also once said:
Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain—and most fools do.
If doing nothing but criticizing, condemning, and complaining makes you a fool, we think we might know of one!
5. Alexander Hamilton: As founder of The New York Post and author of The Federalist Papers, Hamilton had many accomplishments to brag of. He chose instead to admonish those who would use their past accomplishments to excuse their weakness in the present day, saying,
Real firmness is good for anything; strut is good for nothing.
Judging from their quotes, the consensus on the part of our founding fathers would seem to be that Trump is an uneducated fool who makes things up, is associated with idiots, and is all strut with no action.
But, yeah, I’m sure he knows best how they would have wanted our Constitution interpreted.