Abraham Lincoln

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by wpe3bql, May 24, 2015.

  1. wpe3bql

    wpe3bql
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Messages:
    979
    Likes Received:
    12
    Some people would love to see "Honest Abe" be made something similar to a RCC-style "saint" (Along with Washington, Jefferson, Jackson, T & FD Roosevelt, etc.).

    Now, I wouldn't go as far as some folks to say that AL should be "sainted," nor would I say that he should be assigned to something similar as the "hottest place in h**l" along side people as Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot or Saddam H.

    Whether or not AL was saved I will defer judgment on that matter to the Greatest Judge of All.

    OTOH, it irks me to have people go on and on about AL loving all African-Americans and that he single-handedly freed absolutely every slave back in 1863. Moreover, to insist that the American Civil War was fought solely "to free the slaves" has no real foundation in historical fact.

    Privately, AL might have been opposed to the "institution" of slavery as it existed in back in the mid-nineteenth century US. However, there remains to be found any authentic documentation by AL stating such.

    Publically, AL does not appear to oppose slavery per se; he only opposed its extension into the western US territories. IOW, the South could have the slaves as long as they kept them there.

    Did AL free all the slaves in the US by his "Emancipation Proclamation"? Not hardly. What the EP did was only to "free" the slaves that lived in the areas "still in rebellion," i.e., the confederate states that were not already occupied by the Union forces. The old adage that AL freed only the slaves that he couldn't, but didn't free the slaves that he could (Those living in the North...and, yes there were slaves living in the Union states.) has a lot of truth to it.

    It was the 13th Amendment that abolished slavery, and it was ratified some 6 months after AL was killed.

    Additionally, Northern support for the Civil Was not as unanimous as one might be led to assume. Volunteers to fill the ranks of the Army and Navy did not by any means come close to what was needed. Therefore, AL authorized the first military draft in the US.

    It was nowhere near like the draft the US had during the 1960's-70's. For one thing, under AL's draft, a person could avoid it by paying someone else (usually a poor person) to take that draftee's place. Additionally, there were draft riots in such places as Buffalo and NYC.

    AL's position in calling for military action against the South stemmed from the SC's state militia's bombardment of US Fort Sumter in Charleston's harbor.

    Ironically, it'd been suggested some 10 years prior to that incident in 1861 that all US coastal forts be re-assigned to the individual states in which they were located. This proposal was made during the presidency of Franklin Pierce (D-NH) by his Secretary of War.

    Who was his Secretary of War? It was Jefferson Davis---the only president of the Confederate States of America.
     
  2. Salty

    Salty
    Expand Collapse
    20,000 Posts Club
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2003
    Messages:
    22,126
    Likes Received:
    220
  3. rsr

    rsr
    Expand Collapse
    <b> 7,000 posts club</b>
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    10,074
    Likes Received:
    102
    Absolutely correct. No one with a knowledge of history would suggest otherwise.

    The first first is demonstrably wrong. He was opposed to slavery, both on moral and political grounds.

    "The real issue in this controversy—the one pressing upon every mind—is the sentiment on the part of one class that looks upon the institution of slavery as a wrong, and of another class that does not look upon it as a wrong. The sentiment that contemplates the institution of slavery in this country as a wrong is the sentiment of the Republican party. It is the sentiment around which all their actions—all their arguments circle—from which all their propositions radiate. They look upon it as being a moral, social and political wrong; and while they contemplate it as such, they nevertheless have due regard for its actual existence among us, and the difficulties of getting rid of it in any satisfactory way and to all the constitutional obligations thrown about it. Yet having a due regard for these, they desire a policy in regard to it that looks to its not creating any more danger. They insist that it should as far as may be, be treated as a wrong, and one of the methods of treating it as a wrong is to make provision that it shall grow no larger. [Loud applause.] They also desire a policy that looks to a peaceful end of slavery at sometime, as being wrong."
    - Alton, Illinois, Lincoln-Douglas debate

    As to the second point, Lincoln accepted that there was no way within the Constitution to abolish slavery, given that the South could easily block such a move and would likely take up arms should it occur.

    Technically, that is all true. Yet the Emancipation Proclamation let the genie out of the box. Once the slaves were freed in areas controlled by the Federal army, there would be no going back to slavery. From that day forward, the Federal government was committed to abolition, and the Southern slave owners knew it.

    Yes, but Lincoln was a prime mover in the 13th Amendment to cement the Emancipation Proclamation; the Senate passed it in in 1864, the House in January 1865. That is took several months to get the required number of states is no surprise.

    All true. And the Confederacy also had to institute a draft. The war -- with weapons that outstripped tactics -- was exceptionally bloody and horrendous.

    Lincoln was no saint. He was a politician. He should not be deified, and neither should his accomplishments be dismissed.
     
  4. wpe3bql

    wpe3bql
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Messages:
    979
    Likes Received:
    12
    One interesting thing about the CSA's constitution was what it said about its president.

    He was limited to only one six-year term of office.

    Quite often I have read that "reformers" from both the Left and the Right believe those same restrictions ought to be put in effect for the POTUS.
     

Share This Page

Loading...