Posterity - you will never know how much it has cost my generation to preserve your freedom. I hope you will make good use of it.
The failure to read good books both enfeebles the vision and strengthens our most fatal tendency - the belief that the here and now is all there is.
It should be the highest ambition of every American to extend his views beyond himself, and to bear in mind that his conduct will not only affect himself, his country, and his immediate posterity; but that its influence may be co-extensive with the world, and stamp political happiness or misery on ages yet unborn.
What is the difference between a statesman and a politician?...A statesman does what he believes is best for his country, a politician does what best gets him reelected.
A politician thinks about the next elections — the statesman thinks about the next generations.
Honor, justice, and humanity, forbid us tamely to surrender that freedom which we received from our gallant ancestors, and which our innocent posterity have a right to receive from us. We cannot endure the infamy and guilt of resigning succeeding generations to that wretchedness which inevitably awaits them if we basely entail hereditary bondage on them.
Posterity -- you will never know how much it has cost my generation to preserve your freedom. I hope you will make good use of it.
I must study politics and war that my sons (and daughters) may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons (and daughters) ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry and percelain.
If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.