In a 2014 summer edition of The Objective Standard that I recently ran across, an article entitled, “Getting Lincoln Right,” caught my eye. Alexander V. Marriott, a professor of history, takes to task those inhabitants of “the depths” of a “neo-Confederate intellectual backwater”—like economist and staunch Lincoln critic, Thomas DiLorenzo—that engage in, not just “Lincoln revisionism,” but “severe” Lincoln revisionism.
Marriot identifies four charges against Lincoln that he is certain deserve to be “put to rest.” But because the chief among them is the allegation that our 16th president “eviscerated the right of secession supposedly at the heart of the American Revolution,” it is to this claim alone that I will speak.
Before proceeding, let the reader note that I am not a historian. Philosophy is my trade. Yet given the unmistakably, if not always overtly, polemical character of much of the contemporary literature on Lincoln—like Marriot’s essay—it’s painfully clear that however it’s packaged, genuinely historical considerations are noted for their conspicuous absence.
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