"Yes, we did produce a near perfect Republic. But will they keep it? Or will they in the enjoyment of plenty lose the memory of Freedom? Material abundance without character is the surest way to destruction."
"The only lightless dark is the night of ignorance and insensibility. We differ, blind and seeing, one from another, not in our senses, but in the use we make of them, in the imagination and courage with which we seek wisdom beyond the senses."
Children are wholesomely objective about their own faults. They wear their little selves turned inside out; the patches and seams have no privacy. Unless they've been shamed into self-consciousness about their shortcomings, they don't defend them with alibis and explanations. To begin with, they don't consider faults are permanent. After all they live in a state of constant development from day to day. Their attitude seems to say, "I started out from scratch without nothing much to my credit, and I worked up this far. Probably keep going, making improvements along the way." When you talk to a four-year-old, and you compare what you've accomplished by way of self-improvement in the last four years, you're apt to blush. Since children consider their shortcomings neither permanent nor fatal, they aren't particularly embarrassed about them. If adults had the same expectation about reforming themselves, the race might really get somewhere!
A chubby child I know came home from school and said without chagrin, "No matter if I give other children my cupcake, they'd rather not eat their lunch with me."
"Why do you suppose that is?" her mother asked, trying to be as tactfully casual as possible, so her child's feelings wouldn't be bruised. But the little girl was cheerfully impersonal about the whole situation. "Well, I suppose they think I'm bossy," she said.
"And are you?"
"Yep," she said, taking a lollipop out of her mouth to accommodate a wide grin. "Planning to do anything about it? her mother asked. She thought a minute, still grinning. "Yep," she said. "Guess I'll have to get over it. You can't boss people around if they won't play with you.
--Margaret Lee Runbeck, Miss Boo is 16