I decided to adopt a pen name while reading about the founding of the United States. At the time of the nation’s founding it was common for political thinkers who were publishing pamphlets or editorials to adopt pen names taken from the names of Roman statesmen whose political views were similar to their own. The primary example of this can be found in the Federalist Papers, a series of editorial letters submitted anonymously to newspapers during the time leading up to the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. The Nationalists (who somewhat incorrectly labeled themselves “Federalists”, and so practically won the debate almost before it had begun) were primarily represented by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay (or so it is thought) who all wrote under the pen name “Publius“. The “Anti-Federalists” (who actually were true advocates for confederation) are thought to be George Clinton under the pen name “Cato”, Robert Yates under the pen name “Brutus” and Samuel Bryan under the pen name “Centinel”.
I realized it would probably be wise adopt the same strategy in presenting my own political ramblings for two reasons. First, it keeps me from posting all of my thoughts on Facebook where up to this time I’ve been alienating friends who are growing tired of my endless political commentary. And second, with political differences in the nation growing more and more stark and emotionally charged these days, well, it just seems like a wise thing to do.
When I’m not thinking about politics you can find me in the Great Pacific Northwest drinking coffee, reading books, serving in my local Christian church and performing as a musician in a progressive-classic rock band.