Ilana Mercer paints a starkly unflattering portrait of Honest Abe in Lincoln lied, people died. Regular readers of this site may be familiar with Gary Potter’s Catholicism and the Old South, which takes a similarly negative attitude toward the much mythologized statesman from Illinois.
Lincoln lovers like to claim that the Constitution ratified in 1788 forbade peaceful secession and authorized a federal government of so-called limited, delegated powers to invade and occupy any seceding state, declare martial law, subdue secessionists by force, burn and ransack entire cities and then establish a military dictatorship over those states lasting a dozen years.
Suppose this indeed is the case, and that it was perfectly constitutional to intentionally wage war on civilians, to imprison without trial thousands of Northern citizens, jail – even execute – people who refused to take an oath of loyalty to Lord Lincoln, declare martial law, confiscate private property, censor telegraph lines and shut down newspapers for opposing the war, incarcerating their editors and owners. Say, for the sake of argument, that it was indeed lawful to suspend the Bill of Rights, the writ of habeas corpus and the international law. [Read more: Lincoln lied, people died]