The Sharon Statement was adopted on September 11, 1960 by a group of 100 young conservatives who convened at the home of William F. Buckley in Sharon, Connecticut with the purpose of creating Young Americans for Freedom. In 2015 The New York Timesrecognized the Sharon Statement as a “seminal document” of the Conservative Movement and it is widely regarded by historians and thought leaders as one of the most important declarations in the history of American conservatism. Its message is timeless and has been championed by countless conservative leaders since its adoption, including President Ronald Reagan who served as YAF’s Honorary National Chairman. The Sharon Statement continues to function as the foundational document for every YAF chapter across the country.
The Sharon Statement
In this time of moral and political crises, it is the responsibility of the youth of America to affirm certain eternal truths.
We, as young conservatives, believe:
That foremost among the transcendent values is the individual’s use of his God-given free will, whence derives his right to be free from the restrictions of arbitrary force;
That liberty is indivisible, and that political freedom cannot long exist without economic freedom;
That the purpose of government is to protect those freedoms through the preservation of internal order, the provision of national defense, and the administration of justice;
That when government ventures beyond these rightful functions, it accumulates power, which tends to diminish order and liberty;
That the Constitution of the United States is the best arrangement yet devised for empowering government to fulfill its proper role, while restraining it from the concentration and abuse of power;
That the genius of the Constitution—the division of powers—is