When Constitutional-Law Professors Fight

On the folly of relying on history to settle the debate over whether the Fourteenth Amendment should bar Trump from office.
Robert E. Lee.

Disqualifying Trump via Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment

A bad history.
Table of election returns printed in newspaper in 1796.

Collusion, Theft, Violence, and Lies: Lurid Tales of American Elections

1796, the first contested presidential election.
Neon cowboy on I-80 at Nevada’s border with Utah.

The Senate's Anti-Democratic Nature Is Even More Toxic Than I’d Realized

Whole states of the Union owe their very existence to nothing more nation-building than 19th-Century pols’ wanting to add new senators to one side of the aisle.
Black and white photo of Woody Guthrie holding a guitar labeled "this machine kills fascists"

I've Got Those Old Talking-Blues Blues Again

The Folkies and WWII, Part Two.
The Almanac Singers playing various instruments, including guitars, a banjo, and an accordion.

"Which Side Are You On, Boys..."

Watching the Ken Burns series on the U.S. and the Holocaust and thinking about American folk music.

Toward a Non-Usable History

"The New York Times" as the world's most exhausted professor.

“Deeply Rooted in this Nation’s History and Tradition"

The bad history in Alito’s draft overturning Roe v. Wade.
Sheet music cover for Civil War marching song "The Bonnie Blue Flag," featuring two flags used by Confederate states.

We Are a Band of Brothers

Why are so many songs of the Confederacy indelibly inscribed in my Yankee memory?
Portrait of George Washington on a horse.

Declaring War

Congress hasn't declared it often. The U.S. has fought a lot of war anyway. How?
Image of a 1970's band invoking the imagery of the Lost Cause and the Confederacy.

Whistlin' D ----.

Why songs of the southland are really northern.
Norman Mailer, left, with Jimmy Breslin, in the garment district of New York during his 1969 race for mayor.

Secessionist City

While New York has yet to break away from the rest of the country, it's not for lack of trying.
Abraham Lincoln speaking to a crowd.

Stop Making Sense

Are the truths in the Declaration of Independence really self-evident?
Photo illustration of two hands pulling New York Times Magazine article

The Historians Are Fighting

Inside the profession, the battle over the 1619 Project continues.
President Madison ending the Embargo Act cartoon

James Madison and the Debilitating American Tendency to Make Everything About the Constitution

The U.S. Constitution was the reason for Madison and Hamilton's breakup.

Was Declaring Independence Even Important?

Reflections on the latest public debate between historians about the causes of the American Revolution.
Bacon's Rebellion, 1676-1677

Bacon's Rebellion: My Pitch

A drama about an interracial uprising in colonial Virginia.
Civil Rights Act Filibuster, Washington, DC, 1964

The Filibuster, Aaron Burr, and Mitch McConnell

Just because the filibuster wasn't created to promote racial slavery doesn't mean there’s no good argument against it.
Roger Stone

How to Steal an American Election

From Alexander Hamilton to Richard Nixon and more: meddling, fixing, rigging, fraud, and violence.
Signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Against the Consensus Approach to History

How not to learn about the American past.

Our Chief Danger

The story of the democratic movements that the framers of the U.S. Constitution feared and sought to suppress.
Two statues next to each other

Confederates in the Capitol

The National Statuary Collection announced the unification of the former slave economy’s emotional heartland with the heart of national government.

History Won’t Save Us

Why the battle for history must be won in the here and now.

AOC and the American Founding

The problem with progressive intellectuals looking to the nation's founders for progressive models.