September 17

Today is a big day in American history.

226 years ago, the US Constitution was signed. Its brilliance has yet to be matched by any other political document. While it certainly wasn’t perfect, it has the ability to be made better as time goes on.

151 years ago, the bloodiest single day in American history – the Battle of Antietam – took place. Despite their overwhelming numerical advantage, the Union Army of the Potomac under Maj. Gen. George McClellan fought the Confederates under Gen. Robert E. Lee to a stalemate, claiming around 24,000 casualties in the process. While it was a Union victory strategically (as it ended Lee’s invasion of the north), it didn’t make anyone feel good.

Sadly though, today isn’t marked on many people’s calendars. For whatever reason, these two events don’t reach even the level of Flag Day in the American schedule. I’m not calling for a national holiday or anything – I mean, do we really need another Congressionally-mandated 3-day weekend that everyone uses to go to the beach?

So take a few minutes today and learn about these events. If you’re inclined, plan a trip to Antietam. Read the Constitution (or better yet, the Federalist). Let’s bring some meaning to this day.

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