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life in rural nebraska

Moral Decay and the City

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Among the great multitudes of daily reading, I came across this archived opinion article from the Atlantic Monthly.  In the article, there is a relevant and traceable dialogue regarding the depopulation of rural areas – a phenomena that is now nearly 100 years old.  There is also much made of the moral failings of urban centers and the vice that was perceived to be rampant.  While I don’t agree with several nuggets in the article, I did find a few zingers that left me with a smile (and a few that some of you can relate to):

Many great human qualities come to their best in a life of comparative isolation. A big tree, an oak or an elm, standing out in an open field, has a toughness of fibre, a spread of boughs and roundness of shape that are never seen in a tree that stands in the woods. So people get individuality by being much alone. They become self-reliant by relying on themselves. They gain clear opinions by thinking things over, and thinking them out to their necessary conclusions. They acquire inflexibility of purpose by facing obstacles and conquering them. The pioneers of our country and the fathers of the republic were such men. The projectors of great undertakings carried through triumphantly have acquired their power in this way. The country is the natural nursery of such qualities.

Point taken.


Written by Caleb

February 18, 2009 at 3:17 pm

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