It comes down to this: There are those who seek a future and there are those who only care about the present.
For the latter, it is then easier to scorn the concern and the hard work of building an enduring foundation.
That is what deconstruction of the administrative state means. When President Donald Trump likens himself to Andrew Jackson, he would more accurately compare to Andrew Johnson.
Johnson set about undoing the orderly Reconstruction that Abraham Lincoln had planned for. Johnson recklessly made a shambles of it to the extent that he would eventually get impeached. Removal from office fell one vote short.
Even more determinedly, Trump has attempted to destroy every semblance of President Barak Obama’s legacy. His unresolved feelings of resentment are similar to Johnson’s (by having their roots in racism). Racism can poison a person’s soul as certainly as it ruins one’s attitude and outlook.
I wondered for a time why it took so long for historians to recognize Lincoln’s transcendence. It required about 20 years. This was largely because Andrew Johnson had so muddied the waters.
Many are already realizing that up against Trump, we had something special in our first African-American president. Possessing many of the same gifts as the 16th president — a searching intelligence, great wisdom, the ability to think through problems and then act — the 44th, Barack Obama, may sooner be accorded a place in the pantheon of great presidents.
Richard J. Yost
South Abington Township