Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
-- Abraham Lincoln, The Gettysburg Address
, November 19, 1863
FOUR SCORE AND SEVEN YEARS AGO was formed to help us explore the history, politics, and culture of America and its people.
Like many Americans, my understanding of the history and events that shaped this nation—and the people we are today—is greatly lacking. Modern life is structured in a way that does not require us to draw upon our history as a frame of reference when making decisions, when interpreting the news or political propaganda, when voting, or even when stating our opinions—although we would be better off if it did.
To be honest, I probably will not post to this group very often, as history is not my strength. FOUR SCORE was created to give you history buffs out there a chance to show us what you know, and give persons like me an opportunity to learn something new.
Understanding where we’ve been will help us understand where we are going. Understanding who we have been will help us understand who we will become. Understanding how the past affects the present will help us understand how the present shapes the future. Rules of Participation
This is non-partisan group, so posts need to be fact-oriented, educational, professional, and—you guessed it—non-partisan. There are several political groups on A|N, and inside those groups members often say things that would probably irritate other people outside of those political parties. If you want to be with like-minded members, then join one of those groups (links provided below). Of course, I realize that when dealing with political and historical events, it will be difficult to be 100% non-partisan, and someone may always take exception to this or that—but just strive to be as fair as you can, and watch what you say. Try to stay focused on education and verifiable information.Be brief:
Comprehensive is good, but brevity is better. There is a lot of information on the web, and a lot of activity on A|N—basically, there are a lot of things competing for our attention. You will get more mileage out of your posts if you remain succinct and focused.Be focused:
It is all but impossible to separate American history from world history, but when posting events that occur outside of the continental US, you will need to focus on how America has played a role in those events. For example, if you post something about the Israeli-Palestine conflict, you will need to show how that conflict affects the US, or how the US affects that conflict. Be accurate:
This is not a group for those who have an axe to grind, those eager to make outrageous and implausible claims, or for the gullible who believe the US was founded by aliens some time after they built the great pyramids in Egypt. In other words: No crazy stuff!Be relevant:
In the past decade I have noticed that the Geneva Conventions have been in the news quite a bit. How many of us fully understand what the Geneva Conventions are, why we signed them, and what they mean? If you see or hear of a current event, and some part of our history is relevant to that event, then please take the initiative to create a post that will help us understand it.
Posts do not have to be about politics or historical events only. Post can include, but are certainly not limited to:
- Civil rights
- Voting rights
- Capitalism and economic policy
- Native Americans, minorities, and social groups
- Immigration history and trends
- Government bureaus, organizations, and agencies
- Famous and influential Americans (both in and out of office)
- Inventions, commodities, and discoveries
- Foreign policy and trade
- The separation of church and state
- Political demographics and political party history
- National parks, landmarks, and treasures
- Cities, towns, and sites of historical significance
- Healthcare, welfare, social security, and other social programs
- Personal or cultural customs, beliefs, and behaviors
- Wars and conflicts
It is inevitable that there will be some cross-over in topics and issues related to American history with other groups here on A|N. Would you post Mark Twain in this group because he is an influential American, or would you post him in the Nexus Book Club? Tough choice! Use your best judgment and post the topic in the group that best fits the focus of the discussion. Please do not cross post the same discussion twice in different groups. It is against Atheist Nexus policy to do so. Forbidden
Group member book and DVD recommendations:The Founding Fathers (DVD),
- Hostile or discourteous comments, proselytizing, and ad homenim attacks on other members.
- Modern political debates and candidate/party information.
- Current news and events unrelated to historical and non-partisan events.
recommended by Dallas Gaythiest Ben Franklin (DVD),
recommended by Dallas GaytheistAmerican Experience | Eleanor Roosevelt
. recommended by Dallas GaytheistOther A|N groups of interest:Anarchist Atheists Barack Obama ’08 Conversations about Race, Ethnicity and Culture Democrats/American Liberals Free Thinking Anarchists Green Party History Talk The Other Free Thinkers External links of interest:America.gov Bill of RightsCongress.org Constitution of the United States Declaration of Independence Federal Election Commission Help American Vote Act of 2002 House of Representatives Library of CongressThe National Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner National Archives National Park Service Presidential Libraries Presidents Senate Smithsonian Institution Supreme Court USA.gov Voting Rights Act of 1965 White House