Frequently asked questions about our name change

Why did you change your name?

It began with a dispute over trademark rights with another organization, and ended with the conviction that changing our name to Braver Angels is the best way to improve and strengthen our message.

Why are you called Braver Angels?

Our name is inspired by Abraham Lincoln’s calls to courage and charity during the American Civil War.

Why “braver”?

We chose Braver Angels because what we’re asking Americans to do today requires bravery.  Yes, we need civility, and yes, we need to treat each other with respect, but that’s not enough.

The forces against us today are very powerful, and if we fail, our democracy fails. So it’s time to stand up and be strong, even when that’s hard to do.

In 1862, as the Civil War grew ever larger and more frightening, Lincoln warned: “The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion.” Today we too need to rise with the occasion.

What words from Lincoln best convey your message?

“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory … will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”

—First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861, near the beginning of the War

“The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion.”

—State of the Union Message to Congress, December 1, 1862, in the middle of the War

“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right … [let us] bind up the nation’s wounds.” 

—Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865, at the end of the War.