Welcome the Trump Voters Back

Justin E. H. Smith in his Substack Newsletter:

You can do whatever you want with your morals, forgive people or not. But your duties as a citizen are somewhat different than the duties you might have as, say, a Christian (the kind who strives to follow the gospel), and here forgiveness is not so much what is required as, simply, recognition of a common plight. This civic virtue overlaps, admittedly, with the moral; it is difficult to articulate it in terms that do not come across as moralising, and certainly it would be an impediment to its realisation to articulate it in the bare terms of calculative strategy. In France it is traditionally articulated in terms of fraternité, which seems to strike just the right note between strategy and moralising. We need to hold things together somehow; in a real family unit this might have to pass through an overtly moral gesture of forgiveness, but in a polity what we should perhaps expect is that people aspire at least to a recognition of their fellow citizens through a lens that represents them as brothers and sisters.

Even after the defeat of Nazi Germany, the Allied forces understood that de-Nazification meant, first of all, punishing the leaders of the movement, and, second of all, getting the masses of the German people oriented towards an ideal of civic belonging more attractive than Nazism.

More here.