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Published on Oct 14, 2013
Lincoln's constitutional hermeneutics. Lincoln's "apples of gold in pictures of silver" explication describing the connection between the Constitution and the truths in the Declaration of Independence. How Lincoln understood the Constitution on slavery. William Lloyd Garrison and the constitutional hermeneutics of abolitionists. The parallel between abolitionist hermeneutics and the "Living Constitution." John Calhoun and the constitutional hermeneutics of secessionists. The parallel between secessionist hermeneutics and strict constructionism. The difference between original intent and strict constructionism. The tendencies of today's extreme politics in light of Lincoln's "apples of gold in pictures of silver" analogy. Overview of Locke's Second Treatise on Government. The notion of the United States as a Christian nation. The equality clause and the Gettysburg Address. The notion of American exceptionalism. Three reasons natural law cannot (and should not) be completely enumerated. The dangers of solely positive law on the origin of rights. The cyclical appearance and disappearance of natural law in history.