Literary Events

Stephen Fried

When: Wed., Sept. 12, 7 p.m. 2018

Politicians and pundits beat us over the head with the idea of America's "Founding Fathers." We're told that these men believed in a certain version of America — a country that demands fealty to God, guns and white men and has no room for anyone or anything else. Don't believe it. Benjamin Rush, who signed the Declaration of Independence and helped forge our nation, would find those ironclad ideas uncoscionable. Rush was a physician who wanted to create a form of national healthcare and revolutionized the treatment of the mentally ill. The good doctor believed both slavery and capital punishment were morally wrong, as was any sort of discrimination based on gender, religion or race. Now there's a Founding Father to believe in. Author and journalist Stephen Fried has used unpublished documents to craft a biography of this mostly unknown early patriot, whom contemporaries called "the American Hippocrates." Fried discusses his new book Rush at 7 p.m. Wednesday, September 12, at St. Louis County Library Headquarters (1640 South Lindbergh Boulevard, Frontenac; www.slcl.org). Admission is free.

Paul Friswold

Price: free admission

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