Listen now (9 min) | It can seem like we’re a whole lot less civil than we used to be. I think this may be an illusion foisted on us by bitter election cycles and the “objects in mirror are more hysterical than they appear” effects of social media. Here’s a thing worth remembering if you think American Politics has become uncivil — right before the civil war Preston Brooks, a Representative from South Carolina, beat Senator Charles Sumner bloody on the floor of the Senate with his cane. The beating was so bad, it took Sumner three years to recover.
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