Lincoln and the Modern South

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(Originally posted at The American Catholic, I thought the Lincoln Mavens at Almost Chosen People might enjoy it.)

Lee Sigel has written a column for the Daily Beast in which he prays for the South to secede again:

Just think what America would look like without its mostly Southern states. (We could retain “America”: they could call themselves “Smith & Wesson” or “Coca-Cola” or something like that.) Universal health care. No guns. Strong unions. A humane minimum wage. A humane immigration policy. High revenues from a fair tax structure. A massive public-works program. Legal gay marriage. A ban on carbon emissions. Electric cars. Stronger workplace protections. Extended family leave from work in case of pregnancy or illness. Longer unemployment benefits. In short, a society on a par with most of the rest of the industrialized world—a place whose politics have finally caught up with its social and economic realities.

I will not link directly to his post as I do not want to give him any hits for his mind-bendingly foolish scribbling.  As most of our faithful readers know, I am one of Lincoln’s biggest fans in the Catholic blogosphere and my sentiments for the Union in the Late Unpleasantness are quite clear, but I must say if the South did secede today the new nation would have only one problem:  what to do with the hordes of Northern refugees, including me and my family, that would come flocking to live in Dixie.  As far as I can see the Southern states, much more so than most of the Northern states, would be a better fit for Lincoln today:

1.  They are Republican.

2.  They have a patriotism much more like Lincoln’s than the blame America first attitude prevalent in too many of the power centers of the North.

3.  They are pro-business as Lincoln was throughout his political career.

4.  They do not believe that self government consists of breathlessly waiting for the latest edict from the Supreme Court and chanting: Yes Masters.

5.  They have not legalized gay marriage.  A man like Lincoln who opposed polygamy would not have looked kindly upon that cause.

6.  Lincoln had a strong faith in God, and the atheism so fashionable in certain circles of the North today he would have found repellant.

7.  Lincoln was ever the friend of Catholics.  He would have been appalled by the anti-Catholicism too prevalent in the North today as he was by the aptly named Know-Nothings of his time.

8.  Lincoln believed with all his being in the words, “All Men are created Equal.”  The identity politics common in the North today would have appalled him.

9.  The appeals to racial bias, a common tactic in the Democrat party of today, as in Lincoln’s day, would have driven him from the strongholds of the Democrats in the North.

10.  It is clear that the South today is the section of the country standing behind this portion of a speech by Lincoln that summed up what he believed in:

These communities, by their representatives in old Independence Hall, said to the whole world of men: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This was their majestic interpretation of the economy of the Universe. This was their lofty, and wise, and noble understanding of the justice of the Creator to His creatures. [Applause.] Yes, gentlemen, to all His creatures, to the whole great family of man. In their enlightened belief, nothing stamped with the Divine image and likeness was sent into the world to be trodden on, and degraded, and imbruted by its fellows. They grasped not only the whole race of man then living, but they reached forward and seized upon the farthest posterity. They erected a beacon to guide their children and their children’s children, and the countless myriads who should inhabit the earth in other ages. Wise statesmen as they were, they knew the tendency of prosperity to breed tyrants, and so they established these great self-evident truths, that when in the distant future some man, some faction, some interest, should set up the doctrine that none but rich men, or none but white men, were entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, their posterity might look up again to the Declaration of Independence and take courage to renew the battle which their fathers began — so that truth, and justice, and mercy, and all the humane and Christian virtues might not be extinguished from the land; so that no man would hereafter dare to limit and circumscribe the great principles on which the temple of liberty was being built.

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Published in: on May 6, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments (2)  
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2 Comments

  1. Don, pretend I just shook your hand. If Lee Sigel’s desire should bear fruit I sure hope the North accepts the Left Coast as well. That list of desire of his will destroy any nation, any culture.
    In Christ, Dennis McCutcheon.

    • Quite right Dennis. Such commenters as Mr. Sigel give ignorance a bad name.


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