HAMILTON: Lincoln, Obama & Trump Proves that the Nation has Never Been Stronger

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By: Ken Hamilton

The bright but liberal-thinking Kevin Nichols clearly doesn’t like President Trump. The former Niagaran often makes negative posts about Trump on a Niagara-area Facebook page. One such post suggested that 250,000 Brits filled London’s 35,000-person Trafalgar Square in protest of the U.S. president’s England visit. On the other hand, Facebooker Amber Fisch, whose political stripe is difficult to nail down, responded to Nichol’s post by saying, “I think America stopped catering to what Brit’s think in 1776..”

It might be as if these two people are mere members of the very loud Mass American Political Choir, whereas one group is singing the baritone parts and another singing the soprano responses in a song that President Abraham Lincoln composed through some 160 years ago. Its title would have been: The Nation Has Never Been Stronger. Nothing should sound sweeter to a true American than the ‘a cappella’ cacophony of such choir’s disparaging words. It’s clarion sound chimes liberty, if not justice.

Today, we vigorously exercise what could be called the Republic of the United States’ Constitution. Through the technological advances of social media, not only can Americans have a voice in our government, we are also finding that foreign nationals and nation-states, as well as illegal immigrant groups, have taken a voice in our nation’s government, and yet we still stand!

That’s because America’s Constitution isn’t embodied in a single political party, in any one or groups of states, or in any single person – not even the president. It is simply the idea that any individual can work peacefully and equally towards the means of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, as long as it doesn’t impede upon anyone else’s right to do likewise. Too many people are happy that they can spend their own lives liberally looking for something to bitch about;, all in the absence of actually doing anything about their personal discontent.

Like any law, it has to be tested from time to time. As President Abraham Lincoln said in his Gettysburg Address, “… testing whether [the United States of America], or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure.”

Because of the great free and diverse nature of Americans, an ongoing “testing,” such as seen when Obama was hated by some and loved by others during his administration, and subsequently Trump during his, such is indeed a testament to the nation’s ability to long endure.

But the endurance of which Lincoln spoke was to the system’s endurance of the states remaining within a strong union, so much so, that we rally for the Constitution’s 3- base tenets: mutual defense of the nation, the facilitation of trade, and the promotion of the general welfare of the nation — even as it is expressed in the security of our perimeter borders.

Rev. Jeremiah Wright of Trinity United Methodist Church in Chicago, once said of the 9/11 attacks that, “America’s chickens are coming home to roost.” Wright’s words enflamed many Americans. Wright, in this case, wasn’t pointing to the greatest and longest-standing of American’s wrongs. In a nation where everyone now seeks to be special, be it based upon race, nationality, sex or gender, religion and so many others, Lincoln spoke to just one special group: the exploitation of the African in America.

During Lincoln’s 2nd Inaugural Address in 1865, he said, “Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, … so still it must be said “the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.”

Wright’s words are certainly more appropriate in echoes of Lincoln rather than in the downing of the World Trade Center. How deep doth run the residuals of racism and its effects as a nation still bleeds from the unhealed scars of such? And how quickly and quietly we turn to the distractions that both the nation and its individuals must take in being the balm of that healing?

Lincoln also spoke to another side, with sweeter, less pointed expressions than those of Nichols and Fisch, and so many more of us all.

Nearing the close of the Civil War, Lincoln said that the healing must come through, “… malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us … bind up the nation’s wounds, to … do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.”

Ironically, in our divisive weakness, our nation has never been stronger – or even greater!

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