The American Struggle

I’ve been reading Jon Meacham’s great new book, And There Was Light; Abraham Lincoln and the American Struggle. During the winter of 1861, the Civil War had all but begun. There was a concerted movement to prevent Lincoln from being inaugurated and well-founded fears that he would be assassinated or that insurrectionists would seize the Capitol and prevent the counting of electoral votes. Meacham noted, “Lincoln saw democracy as an essential good; his foes saw it as a threat to the aristocracy of power.” Now, more than a century and a half later, the American struggle continues. Its intensity has receded from fever pitch, but the springs that power it are tightly coiled.