Abraham Lincoln Supported Slavery

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The Presidents’ Day holiday is celebrated in the cold month of February; children in classrooms across the United States are given a litany of the Presidents and their most famous accomplishments: George Washington, who could not tell a lie is the “father of our country”; John Kennedy, the dashing young man who asked, “not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country”, was assassinated in a mystery that still remains unsolved, and “Honest Abe” Lincoln, the Great Emancipator who authored the Emancipation Proclamation, which freed the slaves, is credited with beginning the long road in the fight for equality for blacks. While these characterizations are true, there is an untold story to understand. Each president has personal and political skeletons in his closet that time and history tend to allow to remain locked away. Their images stare at the public from shiny coins to folded paper dollars, but their eyes seem to implore Americans to remember the presidents in their best light. Abraham Lincoln’s feelings toward slavery were not actually those that he portrayed in the Emancipation Proclamation. Moreover, Lincoln’s main objective in the Civil War was monetary: he feared states succession and financial collapse. Abraham Lincoln should not be known as the Great Emancipator, but rather the Great Centralizer. Ask an average American citizen why the Civil War was fought and the common reply will be that the North wanted slavery abolished; whereas the South, who relied on slavery to work their plantations did not want slavery abolished. The slavery issue might have been auxiliary, certainly vital to keeping the states from seceding, but the Civil War was not fought to end slavery. If Linc... ... middle of paper ... ...renzo, Thomas J. Lincoln Unmasked: What You're Not Supposed to Know about Dishonest Abe. New York: Three Rivers, 2006. Print. DiLorenzo, Thomas J. The Real Lincoln: a New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War. New York: Three Rivers, 2003. Print. Gienapp, William E. Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2002. Print. "Great Speeches Collection: William Lloyd Garrison Speech - On the Death of John Brown." The History Place. Web. 15 Feb. 2011. . Jones, George. "BLOGDIAL » Blog Archive » The Truth About Abraham Lincoln." Irdial-Discs MMIX. Web. 15 Feb. 2011. . "Lincoln's Changing Views on Slavery." Illinois Periodicals Online at Northern Illinois University - (Main Page). Web. 15 Feb. 2011. .
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