Christian Author: Nancy W. Boyer

Smooth Transitions…not so fast.

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History is often not emphasized in some elementary and high schools around the country.  Unfortunately, those protesting on college campuses might want to go back in class and take a refresher class, mandated by the University.  It might be more productive and open some eyes that this election is final and transitions may or may not be smooth as hoped for.  It is all part of our democracy.  If we give ourselves a chance to recompose with new leadership, students may finish exams and actually get through their education.

president-abraham-lincolnHere are some transitions in history  that we can consider. john-quincy-adams-president

  • 1828   John Quincy Adams had to run away from a mob.  (“Ladies fainted, men were seen with bloody noses and such a scene of confusion took place as is impossible to describe.”)   Whole Story on the mob
  • 1860   States seceded from nation after Abraham Lincoln’s election
  • 1932    Hoover and Roosevelt called each other names.
  • 1952    Truman and Eisenhower were suspicious of tricks.
  • 1969    Lyndon Johnson said Nixon had “blood on his hands” concerning Vietnam.
  • 1980    Reagan felt sorry for Carter. “Though he profoundly disagreed with Carter on policy issues, Reagan harbored no mean-spiritedness toward Carter… It’s usually the loser that is full of sour grapes.” (Ed Meese)
 (Taken from The Atlantic Krishnadev Calamur.)”The presidential election of 1828 was a rematch between John Quincy Adams, the incumbent, and Andrew Jackson, who’d been deprived of the presidency in 1824 by the “corrupt bargain.” The campaign was nasty, even by today’s standards. Jackson’s marriage came under intense scrutiny, as did his ownership of slaves. When the election results were announced, Jackson had won, his supporters stormed the White House, and Adams had to escape through the back.The 1860 election led to what was perhaps the most significant presidential inauguration in American history: Seven Southern states states seceded between the 1860 election and Abraham Lincoln’s inauguration in March of the following year. James Buchanan, the man who Lincoln succeed, believed that while states didn’t have the right to break away, the Constitution did not empower the president to prevent them.

Nine years later, more drama: Andrew Johnson, the highly unpopular outgoing president, did not attend the inauguration because his successor, Ulysses S. Grant, had refused to sit next to him in the carriage. Johnson remained in the White House during the ceremony.

president-herbert-hooverPresident Franklin Delano RooseveltIn the 1932 election, President Hoover (left) called his challenger, Franklin D. Roosevelt, (Right) a “chameleon on plaid.” Roosevelt described the man he’d succeed as a “fat, timid capon.” Their first meeting at the White House was awkward, as was the period running up the inauguration by which time the U.S. economy was in such shambles that Hoover had become a reviled figure.  

president-harry-s-trumanTwenty years later, Harry S. Truman  prepared to hand over the reins of the presidency to Dwight Eisenhower.  The two men had once been allies, working together in the last days of World War II, but had fallen out over what Truman regarded as Eisenhower’s silence on Senator Joe McCarthy. “He has betrayed almost everything I thought he stood for,”Truman said. The transition itself didn’t go well, either. “Ike and his advisers are afraid of some kind of trick,” Truman wrote in his diary. “There are no tricks.”

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president-lyndon-b-johnsonIn 1969, President Lyndon B. Johnson,  who’d decided not to run for a second term of his own, gave way to Richard Nixon, the former vice president. In the dying days of the presidential campaign, Nixon nixed any prospect of LBJ reaching a peace in Vietnam, where the war had been waging for years. Nixon, LBJ had said, had “blood on his hands.” But he still cooperated with President-elect Nixon, believing the threat from the Soviet Union made a smooth transition necessary.
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president-jimmy-carterPresident Carter met with Ronald Reagan after the 1980 election that swept Reagan to the White House. A news article from the time describes Carter saying: “We have a very good working relationship.” Personal relations between the two men were cool, however. Carter acknowledged as much in an interview two years later. In his book The Unfinished Presidency: Jimmy Carter’s Journey Beyond the White House, Douglas Brinkley, the historian, describes  the sniping between the Carter and Reagan camps during the transition, as well as an alleged slight directed at Rosalynn Carter by Nancy Reagan. About the meeting between the two men, he wrote: “Reagan left the meeting impressed by Carter’s ‘graciousness’ and ‘mastery of detail.’”president-ronald-reagan

Descent and protest is part of our free speech in America.  Destruction and violence is a different story and should be prosecuted.  It is a difficult job for police and those in charge of keeping the peace…and as much as possible bringing about a peaceful transfer of power.  Setting the tone for this should be a priority for our Educational Institutions, out-going politicians and Americans in general.

 

 

Change is inevitable as it has always been in the past…smooth or not smooth is what we make it. 

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The Out-Going Family

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The In-Coming Family

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Hang in there.   This too shall pass and life will go on…even if students think theirs have come to an end. Now, you are smarter than that!

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