Tag Archives: Abraham Lincoln

Owen Strachan: A Radical Proposal for Thanksgiving

This week, we have the opportunity to do something truly radical: we can give thanks.

Thanksgiving long predates the founding of America. It’s a tradition that dates to the arrival of the Pilgrims in Plymouth. Following extreme hardship—including numerous deaths, conflict, bitter cold—a group of Christians decided not to complain against God, but to thank Him for his sustaining grace.

Over the centuries, Thanksgiving became more than an exclusively religious event. In the midst of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln made the occasion a federal holiday, a remarkable move.

In modern America, Thanksgiving signals for many an opportunity to come together with family and friends to enjoy the goodness of life. It’s a pause on the madness and delirium of our divided times.

In a time of entitlement, chaos, and self-focus, giving thanks to God is a radical act.

Be a radical this year: eat turkey.

Laugh.

Choose gratitude

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Michael Medved: Today’s Aspirants Should Heed Lincoln’s Example

Abraham Lincoln remains our most revered political leader, but even some of his admirers misunderstand his rise to power. They believe Lincoln only became president in 1860 because Democrats divided, and three major candidates split the votes against him. In fact, those three opponents drew a combined total far less than Lincoln’s hefty majorities in 15 of the 18 free states of the union—providing more than enough electoral votes for decisive victory. The only states Lincoln failed to carry were the fifteen slave states, which naturally opposed a candidate who said: “If slavery isn’t wrong, then nothing is wrong.”

In Lincoln’s re-election run in 1864, he won an even greater landslide: winning the popular vote by 10 percent, and carrying 22 of 25 states. His example reminds us that great presidential leadership relies on clear-cut majority support, not the cobbled together, squeaker victories that seem to obsess too many strategists and commentators as they look toward 2020.

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Abraham Lincoln Special


The Townhall Review — December 29, 2018

Michael Medved takes us on an appreciative tour of Abraham Lincoln: the wartime president, a phenomenal leader, a man with brilliant rhetorical gifts, and unparalleled political prowess.

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Michael Medved: A Lesson from Lincoln on President’s Day

Opioid

On the eve of Civil War, Abraham Lincoln concluded his First Inaugural Address with two sentences of incandescent eloquence: “Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”

These words remind us that Lincoln—whose legacy we honor on President’s Day—became one of the greatest English prose writers in history, despite his background as an impoverished frontier boy with only a year of schooling. His rise constitutes one of the many American miracles that should inspire anyone willing to look with open eyes at our uniquely blessed past.

Throughout the Civil War and till the day of his death, Lincoln followed the approach later recommended by Bismarck: Listen for God’s footsteps marching through history, then grab his coattails and hang on.

May we see God’s design for America as we celebrate President’s Day.

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David Davenport: We’re Number 45

Compromise

For nearly 50 years now, Freedom House has published its annual survey of the freest countries in the world. This year’s report contains some troubling news.

First, with an increase in authoritarian regimes and populism, overall freedom in the world declined in the past year.

Second, the United States, after dropping a point in freedom last year, lost another point this year. Where would you rank the U.S. among the freest countries? Number one or two, certainly in the top 10? No, the U.S. is now tied for 45th.

Though we are still rated as “free,” the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction. Burdened by over-regulation, with attacks on our political system from within and without, American democracy is seen as troubled.

Abraham Lincoln wisely said, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” When it comes to freedom, we should never be content to say, “we’re number 45.”

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