It’s a shame to say that today’s political history is a record set on neighborly misgivings. How sorry a fate to survive such a virulent tide and not bear a permanent lesson into the future? In some ways, these unfortunate days have almost a distinctively American flavor of division. In some ways, as split as we are, there is little that is new.
What most of us experience is the day-to-day noise of some distant affair that holds some constantly anxious intrigue on our daily lives. History, however, may recognize only the ultimate apogee achieved by whomever the victor turns out to be. The story it will tell is likely to be unambiguous.
Among today’s greatest clichés is “history in the making.” Every minute in these momentous proceedings is a new chapter to be studied in distant texts of history. Have no doubt that we are once again standing on time’s stage; if there are days when our conduct is measured on behalf of all others, these are those days. What do we do? How shall we act? How do we define these critical moments?
Arguably the best and most favorable path through this keystone event will be one of true courage, and we’ll make America better for it. Today’s candor comes burdened by exaggerated historical scrutiny; if live rhetoric enjoys overblown rewards of permanency, then why keep mercy at a premium? Imagine the title of today, printed in the far future, as “rightness rejoiced!”