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Looking for Lincoln - Essay Example

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He is mythologized as the country’s greatest hero who symbolizes the American patriotism. Lincoln was an efficient president who deserves very much of…
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Looking for Lincoln

Download file to see previous pages... He was considered as the presidential god and democratic ideal who sacrificed his life for the nation. Also, as his assassination occurred on a Good Friday, he was considered by the mourning nationals as a Jesus parallel, and this added his reverential heights. Several events that followed Lincoln’s death and immense grief and memory of Lincoln in public minds have definitely added to the cohesion, nationalism, and unity of the Americans during a period of serious degeneration. However, Lincoln has been considered as both a true and false friend of African Americans, and as one who supports or opposes incursions on civil liberties. Philip B. Kunhardt’s article Lincolns Contested Legacy throws light on some of the major arguments in this regard.
As Kunhardt’s article reveals, interpretation of Lincoln’s legacy varied from group to group. Interpretation by “northerners and southerners, prairie westerners and east coast elites, blacks and white, secular and religious, liberals and conservatives, scholars and popularizers” varied (para. 1). For instance, the prevailing mood after Lincoln’s death, as told by Evening Post editor Parke Godwin is “No loss has been comparable to his. Never in human history has there been so universal, so spontaneous, so profound an expression of a nations bereavement” (para 2). Lincoln was considered as a wise and good man and a supreme leader by many though everyone does not agree with this. Northern democrats opposed Lincoln’s wartime suspension of habeas corpus which has led to imprisonment without trial of suspected traitors and protestors, and they criticized Lincoln’s tyrannical rule.
Much of the southerners also hated Lincoln, although some have expressed regret over his death, many considered John wilkes booth, the murderer of Lincoln, as “bold slayer of an American tyrant” (Kunhardt, para 4). African Americans like Frederick Douglas passionately promoted Lincolns ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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