"In the end, the state of the Union comes down to the character of the
people. ... I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her
commodious harbors, her ample rivers, and it was not there. I sought for
it in the fertile fields, and boundless prairies, and it was not there.
I sought it in her rich mines, and vast world commerce, and it was not
there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her
pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her
genius and power."
Alexis de Tocqueville
[Alexis Charles Henri Maurice Clerel, le Comte de Tocqueville] (1805-1859) French historian
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