Now more than ever is the time for our statesmen, legislators, and enlightened writers to talk up the Puritans in the name of the most sublime faculties, those with which we can be happy as human beings. The justice of the middle-class American, as Tocqueville says, is that nobody is above or below being a being with interests–someone who is free and who works for himself (DA.2.2.8). But the Christians provide the indispensable addition that each of us is more than a being with interests, and so each of us share in a kind of greatness the aristocrats reserved only for themselves. So each of us was made to enjoy civilization and liberal education and the leisurely, social, conversational contemplation of who we are under God. Truth to tell, we’re much more repressed and unhappy these days than the Puritans ever were, at least at their best.