labelled for reuse-pixabay: RachelBostwick

Trump Should Remember Lincoln When Thinking About Immigration

Michael Lucchese

Right-wing media exploded earlier this month when President Trump appeared to have made a deal with congressional Democrats to enshrine the legal status of certain classes of undocumented aliens living in the United States.

Iowa representative Steve King tweeted that the President’s “base is blown up, destroyed, irreparable, and disillusioned beyond repair.” Many on the right are furiously arguing this is the worst moment of the Trump administration thus far.

On the contrary, if this deal truly explodes the President’s base, this could be one of the most shining moments of these early months of the Trump Presidency. Continue reading “Trump Should Remember Lincoln When Thinking About Immigration”

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Labelled for reuse: Wikimedia Commons

UVA’s New Slavery Monument: How to Remember the Founding and Slavery

Michael Lucchese

In the midst of great controversy about race relations and the status of Civil War monuments, the University of Virginia recently announced intent to build a memorial to the slaves who built and maintained the university before the Civil War.

According to the university’s website, the planned memorial will be called the “Freedom Ring” and is meant to resemble broken shackles. It is 80 feet in diameter — the same as the Rotunda Jefferson designed in the 19th century which dominates the campus. Continue reading “UVA’s New Slavery Monument: How to Remember the Founding and Slavery”

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Faulkner and Polarization: Image by Chris Medrano

Reading Great Books Can Help Stop Political Polarization

Michael Lucchese

Over the past few weeks, the American people reacted to news from Washington — from the firing of James Comey to the investigations into the Trump campaign’s alleged connections to Russia — in an utterly polarized way. Pundits on both the left and the right have spent ages hurling the worst insults and accusations at each other, and tensions in Washington are higher now than at any time since the Watergate scandal.

Meanwhile, many ordinary Americans across the country despair at the state of politics. The American people elected Donald Trump to “shake things up” in Washington, and all his administration has given them is constant scandal, controversy, and gaffes.

That’s not to say that Donald Trump is the root of Washington’s problems. Really, our country has become increasingly polarized since the end of the Cold War. In a 1985 speech, “The Courage to Affirm,” Russell Kirk, summarized the problem of polarization  by saying, “Those who immerse themselves in the mere process of [each] month’s events become the prisoners of time and circumstance.

Instead of looking to the ever-shifting currents of politicking in Washington, Americans should turn to the permanent, unchanging “self-evident truths” about human nature. These truths are best articulated in great novels, poems, and plays by authors through history, not in the nightly news or by bombastic radio hosts. Continue reading “Reading Great Books Can Help Stop Political Polarization”

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Theresa May Teaches a Crumbling World a Lesson on Statesmanship

Michael Lucchese

On June 8, British citizens will head to the polls to vote in a snap election called by prime minister Theresa May. While some American observers may be confused by it, May’s decision-making actually offers a model of contemporary statesmanship worthy of emulation. Continue reading “Theresa May Teaches a Crumbling World a Lesson on Statesmanship”

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