The Atlantic

Letters: ‘We Need to Read Lincoln’s Words, Heed Their Meaning, Weep That We Have Fallen Astray’

Readers respond to George Packer’s argument that a government shutdown looks like the beginning of the end that America’s 16th president always knew was possible.
Source: Toya Sarno Jordan / Reuters

The Suicide of a Great Democracy

Last week, George Packer described what it was like to visit the Lincoln Memorial during the government shutdown. “It shamed me to read” Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural, Packer wrote. “Lincoln’s eloquence touched levels of morality and high resolve that were preposterously out of reach in the first days of 2019, in the third year of the Trump presidency.”


I found the article very moving until I got toward the end. Then I was disappointed. This nation is dividing and picking sides. I had hoped I was reading a neutral article, one that was based on the concerns of its people. Instead, at the end you seem to blame President Trump for all of the issues and the shutdown. Yes, he made the decision to shut down, but we seem to have two equally stubborn opposing sides. Both are butting heads and refusing to budge. A compromise of some

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