Scott Yenor

Lincoln and Civil Rights During Wartime

Today’s concerns about the Patriot Act and the status of our combatants in the War on Terrorism raise perennial issues of democratic governance in a liberal society. No president faced these issues more clearly and stridently than Abraham Lincoln. Responding to arguments from Erastus Corning and other New York Democrats, Lincoln defended his decisions with respect to civil rights as being humane and respectful of the goals of union. In this talk, Dr. Yenor discusses Lincoln’s arguments and then transfers the principles of his arguments to contemporary issues. Today’s issues may be as complicated as, or even more complicated than, those faced by Lincoln, but our resolution of those issues favors civil rights much more than the Great Emancipator’s view.