Recent Courage Commentaries

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Has America Lost Its Moral Compass?
In September 2009, I posted a commentary with that title with the following opening . . . “During an awards ceremony, a Rap star takes the stage away from one winner and shouts that another should have won. “A political pundit calls the President a racist. “In the middle of the President’s address to a joint session of Congress, a...
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July 1, 2022
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Who Are We?
In a Q&A session last month after a performance of the Broadway show Company, a woman in the audience was asked to put her mask back on. When she refused, singer Patti LuPone unloaded on her. “If you’re not going to follow the rules, Get The F*** Out of Here!” “I pay your salary!” the woman yelled back before she...
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June 28, 2022
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“A Clear and Present Danger,” Judge J. Michael Luttig
The House select committee investigating the attack on the Capitol on January 6 is expected to hear testimony from three top Department of Justice officials on Trump’s push to overturn 2020 election results within the department. I will be live-tweeting at 3:00pm EST and 12:00pm PST: @jimlichtman This is subject to any time change. After the third installment of the...
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June 21, 2022
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From Hürtgen Forest to Snowflakes
In honor of Memorial Day, last Friday I began by describing the longest battle American forces faced in the the Hürtgen Forest during World War II. I wrote how my father, Private James Lichtman, survived an 88mm German canon attack, and a minefield as he crawled to an aid station to receive medical attention for his frozen feet. This is...
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May 30, 2022
Featured image for “The Battle for the Hürtgen and One Soldier Who Lived It”
The Battle for the Hürtgen and One Soldier Who Lived It
In chronicling one of the bloodiest battles of World War II, historian Charles Whiting writes, “Thirty thousand American G.I.’s were killed or wounded in the longest battle ever fought by the US Army—a battle that has been ignored for more than fifty years, a battle that should never have been fought.” My father, Private James Lichtman, was one of the...
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May 27, 2022
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We Are Americans
Character is a word that’s rarely used today; rarer still is finding leaders who demonstrate character. But there are a few. Republicans Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, against their party’s wishes, chose to participate in an investigation into the causes of the January 6, 2020 insurrection. It takes character and courage to choose principle over politics. Where would we be...
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May 13, 2022
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What Kind of Country Do We Want?
What are we doing to one another? What’s happened to our sense of honesty and respect for each other? Why must we tear apart the fabric of our democracy by fear, distrust and anger? We live in a democracy where we are free to express our thoughts, our ideas, and vote for those we trust to lead us forward. “If...
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May 9, 2022
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Profiles in Courage
In 1877, Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar, a former distinguished Confederate officer, was the hugely popular Democratic Senator from Mississippi. So revered for his commitment to duty and integrity that a Washington reporter said of Lamar, “he would be a conspicuous personality anywhere, with a character and quality of his own.” Lamar was now faced with an impossible choice in the...
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April 26, 2022
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What Makes a Leader?
“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.” — John Maxwell, American clergyman Liz Cheney is smart, disciplined, honest and fearless. A rock-sold Republican from Wyoming, Cheney is one of only two House Republicans who sit on the House panel investigating the January 6 insurrection. Adam Kinzinger is the other. However, it is...
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April 12, 2022
The Walking Dead
“Common sense is not that common.”—Voltaire Embed from Getty Images Yup, it’s official, the Republican Party is dead! The party of Lincoln, Reagan, Eisenhower, George H.W. Bush, and God Love ’em, John McCain, is dead from the neck up. On Friday, the Republican National Committee censured (formerly condemned) Republican Representatives Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney who “chose to join Nancy...
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February 8, 2022