Wednesday, July 04, 2012

How to Arrive at Compromise

Thoughtful essay from Grim, a counterpoint on Cassandra's desire for compromise.

...If I have one wish for this Fourth of July, it might be that we stop for a moment to contemplate our long history, considering both the great good and the equally great evils this nation has experienced. If we did not consider the governments of the past to be illegitimate when they made very great mistakes, by what rationale do we seek to undermine the legitimacy of our present government, however deeply we disagree with its policies?...--Cassandra

...If we are to grant Cassandra's wish, and re-examine the way in which the nation advanced to its state of flourishing liberty, we will find only some few compromises -- and a great deal of uncompromising violence.  Even where we see compromises, we see them in the context of threats of armed rebellion, secession and disunion.  --Grim

Grim then goes on to recapitulate the history of a number of US "compromises," and warns:

...The great lesson is that compromise comes only at the point of disunion and violence.  If we have principles we are prepared to insist upon, we must be willing to contemplate -- and indeed, to prepare for -- disunion and even civil war.

That is not to disdain compromise, or to set it aside.  It is, rather, the only way to achieve a compromise on such a basic and deeply-felt matter.  It is the way we have always treated these things.  Conflict is how liberty ever came to flourish at all.

I remind you that Grim is a Southern Democrat.

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