Everyone who knows me discovers that I am a Civil War buff. In grade school, we all had to memorize Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Over the years, I have heard various renditions of the speech. Newspaper reporters recorded what they thought they heard, and published it. Lincoln himself made at least five existing copies, but even he had slight variations in some of the copies.

In the last sentence, most auditory renditions emphasize the following words that I have capitalized: OF, BY and FOR the people. But I heard one reading that emphasized a different word: of the PEOPLE, by the PEOPLE, and for the PEOPLE.

The first interpretation deals with governmental process, while the latter emphasizes who is the beneficiary of that process. That’s different. We don’t know how Lincoln delivered his speech, since it was not audibly recorded. And that’s my point.

President Trump released his filtered version of his conversation with the president of Ukraine. Many, including Trump, political experts and reporters, referred to this as a “transcript.” I would suggest they all borrow that old standby, Webster’s Dictionary: A transcript is a written, printed, or typed copy of dictated or recorded material.

The document that was released is titled “memorandum of telephone conversation.” Webster defines memorandum as an informal written record, an informal diplomatic communication, or an informal written record of an agreement that has not yet become official.

In fine print on the bottom of page one is a caution: A memorandum is not a verbatim transcript. The process was explained on public television by an expert.

Three Situation Room duty officers are listening live to the telephone conversation, each furiously typing on his computer what he thinks he heard. Afterward, all three get together to iron out any differences.

Matthew Farina, Southern Pines

(6) comments

Sally Larson

Honestly, I don't understand why anyone can support this deceitful person. This has nothing to do with party affiliation, I'm an independent and vote for the person I like. His character says it all, why would anyone even want someone like this in charge of anything. I can't understand why his supporters don't demand he stops lying. Don't tell me he's better than Hilary, just answer the question as to his character, please. I'd really like to understand it.

Peyton Cook

How do you know it was “filtered”. The President did not have to be release the transcript as it was privileged. He did because there was no quid pro quo. The so-called “whistle-blower” was really a leaker as he had no firsthand know of the contents. This is another plot cooked up by the Democrats to get rid of a dewly-elected President. It all began before the 2016 election and has continued to the present day. He has done nothing to warrant this contrived “investigation” except having the audacity of his voters finding him more suitable to be President than Hillary Clinton. How he has stood the drumbeat of vile, untrue efforts of 99% of the media, Democrat leaders, and inside the DC beltway “establishment” (including many Republicans) indicates an individual dedicated to MAGA: to work to reestablish the United States as an economic power where all citizens can prosper with the military strength to protect the nation and fulfill our international obligations as well as secure our homeland. That’s why I and many millions supported him in 2016 and wii do so in 2020.

Jim Tomashoff

Trump was elected by "dew?"

Peyton Cook


Kent Misegades

Read ‘The Real Lincoln’ by Thomas DiLorenzo to get the truth on Lincoln, one of America’s greatest tyrants.

Jim Tomashoff

Thomas DiLorenzo, an "academic" whose publications have been roundly debunked and repudiated by other members of his own Department. If people are interested just do a quick Google search of DiLorenzo and acquaint yourself with the critiques of his so-called scholarship by his peers. The man has no following except in extreme right-wing publications, so of course Kent likes him.

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