Bicentennial Essay: Vice and Virtue: Our Moral Condition

The following Bicentennial Essay is the fourth in a series that will appear periodically into 1976 and will discuss how we have changed in our 200 years. ·

To be an American is of itself almost a moral condition, an education, and a career. —George Santayana

In the midst of the War for Independence, the Continental Congress interrupted its routine to deliver an important message to the public. The American people, Congress implored, should beseech God that "vice, prophaneness, extortion, and every evil may be done away ... that we may be a...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!