By Yuval Levin June 30, Washington Post
[JB comment: Nice piece, but since when do we inhabitants of the United States of Amnesia remember anything, except maybe Civil War monuments? Henry Ford: "History is more or less bunk. It's tradition. We don't want tradition." "President Bush launched the We the People initiative on Constitution Day, Sept. 17, 2002, at a special White House Rose Garden ceremony. The President cited numerous studies that have indicated that many young Americans have at best only a passing knowledge of our nation's history and principles of democratic government. For example, one survey has shown that one in five high school seniors did not know Germany was not a U.S. ally in World War II." A personal example: One of my former students, very bright but (I suspect, given his very literal, honest mind) not speaking ironically: "I don't know anything before 9/11." Maybe the below idealistic piece will lead some high schoolers/college students/GWB [is there that much difference?] to "learn" "when" (the historical background) the Declaration of Independence was actually adopted -- or more broadly, that there is such a thing as the past (her/history) ... :)]
Yuval Levin, the editor of National Affairs, is the Hertog fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.
image from article
Americans use patriotism as a political cudgel. Lincoln had an answer to that problem.