Canton Repository: Two hundred years ago this week, Washington was burning. The President’s House (later to be called the White House) and the Capitol were among the buildings that were torched by British soldiers on Aug. 24, 1814.
In the end, the nation survived its second war with Great Britain, just as it did the first, and became a stronger, better country.
It was a comforting reminder at the end of a horrible week that included the beheading of an American journalist by barbarians in Syria and the continuing spread of the Ebola virus in West Africa.
And, we confess, it was a week like too many others that left us wondering whether Americans’ innate sense of optimism — perhaps the biggest key to our future as a country — is in danger of being extinguished.
Fortunately, we mustered our own innate optimism and took comfort in the thought that after 1814, America faced even more daunting challenges.
We survived them, too. And became a better country.