Washington's Farewell Address Essay

1541 words - 6 pages

George Washington, the first president of the United States, had written a very important historical speech and document towards the end of his time in office. He had written the Farewell address which focused on helping America understand the importance of preserving unity, acknowledging the rise of political parties forming, strengthening religion and morality, and he stated his position on American foreign policy. He addressed these ideas with strong tone and used incredible amount of dictions that strengthens his tone as well as representing his appeal to ethos to a strong degree. However, today’s society seemed to forget Washington’s position on foreign policy and has created a new form of the policy. But nonetheless as time grew, change occurs. In today’s society Washington’s foreign policy would include many positive and negative manifestations, but it is still a speech and document that will always apply to America. One main focus of Washington’s farewell address was to alert the citizens of the U.S. that America should not get involved in foreign relations, especially with the flare between the French and the British. He wanted America to stay neutral in foreign matters and not hold long term alliances with other nations. He stated “Europe has a set of primary interests, which to us have none, or a very remote relation.” He included how it is unwise for America to implicate itself with artificial ties. Washington believed that if America did conduct with foreign nations then they would influence people as well as government to act as they wanted. In other words, Washington encouraged Americans to take advantage as a new union and avoid as much political affairs with others. Washington also concerned himself with the preservation of the Union. “Your Union ought to be considered as a main prop of your liberty, and that the love of the one ought to endear to you the preservation of the other.” He emphasized the importance of a union both as a government and as people and how liberty can be achieved through staying a union in both ways. Another focus Washington included in his farewell address was his strong support for religion and morality. Washington touched upon explaining how morality cannot be achieved without religion thus proclaiming the importance of religion. He proceeded to talk about how morality was the key to electing popular candidates running for government and if religion is not emphasized in the union, morality is hard to attain which corrupts government. Another main focus Washington promoted was how political parties should be repressed. He felt that the political parties tend to get out of hand in competing with each other and thus cause distractions in the government. The concern he showed was strongly toward the Republican-Democratic Party and the Federalist Party. Washington used many rhetorical strategies to his advantage. One common strategy Washington used in his address was his diction....

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