Sunday, September 2, 2007

Abe Lincoln was a racist, a liar, and an atheist, so why...?

Why do we, Americans mostly, revere Abraham Lincoln so?

I have to admit I "celebrated Lincoln's birthday, just like everyone else did - but if I'd have known then what I know now! I can't understand why he is so highly thought of - having the type of ignorant attitude as this passage reveals:

In the September 18, 1858 debate, Abraham Lincoln said:

I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races - that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of Negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And in as much as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.

"See our present condition---the country engaged in war! Our White men cutting one another's throats! And then consider what we know to be the truth. But for your race among us there could not be war, although many men engaged on either side do not care for you one way or another.

  • "Why should the people of your race be colonized, and where? Why should they leave this country? This is, perhaps, the first question for proper consideration. You and we are different races. We have between us a broader difference than exists between almost any other two races. Whether it is right or wrong I need not discuss, but this physical difference is a great disadvantage to us both, as I think your race suffer very greatly, many of them by living among us, while ours suffer from your presence. In a word, we suffer on each side. If this be admitted, it affords a reason at least why we should be separated. It is better for both, therefore, to be separated."
— Spoken at the White House to a group of black community leaders, August 14th, 1862, from COLLECTED WORKS OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Vol 5, page 371

  • "We have made the mistake of believing what Lincoln said and ignoring what Lincoln actually did. Since Lincoln was a consummate liar, telling each audience what it wanted to hear in order to advance his political career, it is easy to find pretty much anything one wants in Lincoln's utterances.
  • For example, Lincoln, often cited for his atheism by close associates—so much the atheist that he wrote a book in his youth parodying Christianity—cynically invoked America's religious values in public as a means of gaining a political following."
Here’s my sources:

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