This reminds me of a sort of implausible joke I heard as a child. It goes something like, “Lincoln and Washington were having dinner when Washington complained that Lincoln got to be on a bill which was a higher demonination. ‘Why should I be on the one? It’s unfair.’ Lincoln replied ‘ look at this way. More people will see you. More folks have singles in their pockets than fives.'”
I suppose this was an example of perspective. I agree with you on perspective. And I would love to keep Hamilton and put Tubman on a two dollar bill why not do that and keep who we have. Simply reintroduce the $2.00 bill.
It does seem to me historically tone deaf for the Treasury Dept. to consider taking Alexander Hamilton, of all people, off U.S. currency, of all things, or even reducing his presence there. I can’t say I care who is on the money — easier to have nothing there but graphic design, I think — but if any face should be engraved on money, it’s Hamilton’s. Money is what he was all about.
That obvious fact has recently inspired a burst of Hamilton adulation, summed up in Steven Rattner’s New York Times Op Ed today. Rattner takes the controversy as an occasion for making a boatload of wrongheaded comparisons among the U.S. founders, arriving at the foregone conclusion that Hamilton was morally and politically superior to others. That requires glib assertions that misrepresent Hamilton and end up making no historical sense at all.
Leaning at first on the rickety Hamilton-vs.-Jefferson binary, Rattner says Hamilton created the first U.S. central bank against Jefferson’s fierce opposition. Jefferson did oppose the bank, but it…
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