Wednesday, May 3, 2017
493. Dr. Dave Wang's Speech on the US Founders and China
On April 14, 2017 Dr. Dave Wang made a presentation on Chinese cultural influence on Benjamin Franklin. He told several dozens of audience who presented at the meeting:
"I wrote about Benjamin Franklin and Confucian moral philosophy, and that Franklin used the principles of Confucius to cultivate his virtue. In 2011, I published “The U.S. Founders and China: The Origin of Chinese Cultural Influence on the United States,” which includes a picture of the Supreme Court Building, and there is Confucius right there. When you go to the United States Supreme Court, if you go to the east gate, you can see Confucius right there.
Franklin published an essay on the morals of Confucius in 1737 in his Pennsylvania Gazette. He published several chapters of Confucius’ moral philosophy in 1737. In a 1747 letter to George Whitefield, a very well-known pastor, Franklin wrote, “Confucius was my example. I followed Confucius.” Twelve years later, Franklin published Confucius’ works.
In 1784, after the Revolution, some veterans hoped they could hand down their glories, their titles, to their descendants. They organized the Cincinnatus Society for this purpose. Franklin was not happy about the idea of handing down your title, your glory, to the next generation—that’s the inheritance system, or the aristocratic system of the Europeans, which was just what our Revolution opposed. What’s the meaning of the Revolution, if we restore the European aristocratic inheritance system? That’s totally wrong. We should adopt the Chinese merit system, and people with talents will be selected to serve the public."