Jefferson and a New Historical Focus

Revisionists perpetuating the allegation that Thomas Jefferson… fathered all of Sally Hemings’ children now believe history is on their side.  The pressures of political correctness have relegated reasonable discourse on the issue to the fringe.  A scholar who questions the findings of writers like Annette Gordon-Reed, must be prepared to be labeled a racist.  TheContinue reading “Jefferson and a New Historical Focus”

Religious Freedom Within Reason

Thomas Jefferson was the author of religious freedom in America… as the First Amendment borrows its language from his Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom.  Like all men of the Enlightenment, Jefferson believed it was built upon the individual.  The individual was born free to worship, or not, in anyway he saw fit. “…nor shall otherwiseContinue reading “Religious Freedom Within Reason”

Hiss was the Wrong Martyr

This is an older post, as previously published, it was quite controversial. Students frequently ask me of this during our discussions of the Second Red Scare. Alger Hiss was not a victim of McCarthyism and he was definitely not a martyr. The American Communist Party of the 1930’s was not simply a social club ourContinue reading “Hiss was the Wrong Martyr”

Remarkable Restraint

Abraham Lincoln could have curried much political favor in the West had he ordered the executions of 303 Dakota Sioux – Instead, he reviewed each case. Despite the crushing defeat at Second Bull Run, the horrific carnage of Antietam, and the political fallout of issuing the Emancipation proclamation Lincoln still listened to the facts ofContinue reading “Remarkable Restraint”

TV Review- History Channel’s “Washington”

Historical documentaries have changed forever. Reduced attention spans have spelled the end of the wistful images and genteel music of the Ken Burns style of documentary making. Now, actors and live action fill the time between the insight provided by “experts.” The word of historians apparently ring hollow, so the new style also interjects opinionsContinue reading “TV Review- History Channel’s “Washington””

Stalin Takes Over at Yalta

“It was not a question of what we would let the Russians do, but what we could get the Russians to do.” Future Secretary of State James Byrnes commented on the Yalta conference which began on February 4, 1945. Most historians now agree that Yalta… is where Stalin exerted his will upon the European continent. Continue reading “Stalin Takes Over at Yalta”

Bring Back Washington’s Birthday Celebration

There is something absurd in our generic observances of “Presidents Day.” Do we truly wish to venerate Warren Harding, Zachary Taylor, and Franklin Pierce? Should Andrew Johnson, Bill Clinton, and Donald Trump really be exalted in our collective memory? President’s Day is a workplace convenience contrived by the government to limit available vacation days inContinue reading “Bring Back Washington’s Birthday Celebration”

History News Roundup

Click on links below Very different responses to Impeachment acquittals House passes bill to create women’s history museum The forgotten history of the Presidential Medal of Freedom Scholars continue to question the 1619 Project New Jersey Bill would remove statue of Union General from US Capitol.

On Immigration

Jefferson discussed immigration to the United States in 1805: “Shall we refuse the unhappy fugitives from distress that hospitality which the savages of the wilderness extended to our fathers arriving in this land? Shall oppressed humanity find no asylum on this globe?” America was growing and Jefferson approved: “We contemplate this rapid growth, and theContinue reading “On Immigration”

Trump has Jackson’s Worst Traits

Trump’s advisors insist he is the second coming of Andrew Jackson. Never mind that Trump has no record of public or military service, the similarities are portrayed as real and historic. Such claims are ludicrous when measuring the commendable aspects of Jackson’s life. Military heroics and public service are glaring holes in the Trump resume.Continue reading “Trump has Jackson’s Worst Traits”