Citizenship Is an Endless Job

President Obama today said that no matter the political party we are on the same team as Americans. The elections are more like intra-squad scrimmages, competing against ourselves. I have to say I was surprised he had the presence of mind to say that in the face of the furious rejection of what he represents. But he has always taken the long view of his own role, as I understand it from reading interviews with him or hearing him talk about political life. 
What we cannot do is hand over the keys to the car to one person or a few people who say, “Just get out of the way and let me drive. I’ve got this.” No, it has to be “we’ve got this.”
I saw this today on Facebook, a quote from a speech by Lincoln in 1838 warning about the danger of a tyrant or tyranny at large arising in the nation (his target was the acute threat to national life posed by slavery’s supporters): “Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the ocean and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest, with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force take a drink from the Ohio or make a track on the Blue Ridge in a trial of a thousand years. At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer. If it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide.”

2 Responses to Citizenship Is an Endless Job

  1. David Maine says:

    President Lincoln was a very wise man. I have to ask, are we bringing in from abroad as refugees the people who will spring up amongst us? Would that not be a form of suicide?