Abraham Lincoln: Overcoming Political and Social Obstacles in Order to Preserve the Union and Eliminate Slavery
This is a 4 page paper discussing the political and social obstacles Lincoln had to overcome to achieve his goals. After President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on April 16, 1865, writer Stephen Oates in his book “Abraham Lincoln: The Man Behind the Myths” (1984) said that Lincoln became symbolic to “ministers across the North [who] portrayed the slain President as an American Christ who died to expiate the sins of his guilty land”. While this statement reflects the enormity of the legend for freedom and unity Lincoln would become, his political career was one of controversy as his personal goals to preserve the Union and eliminate slavery were not necessarily popular notions in his day. In fact, many accused him of working against the U.S. Constitution in many of his statements and policies. In addition to the political obstacles he had to overcome, writings from the time also indicate that socially many still regarded him as a third-class citizen within a first-class position; adding to the controversy of his decisions and his ultimate dedication to the preservation of the Union throughout the Civil War and his issuing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 declaring all slaves were free forever. Despite these obstacles, Lincoln managed to persuade the northern Republicans and Democrats to back his desires for the elimination of slavery in the south while using the tide of controversy from the publication of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” and his public speech at the military cemetery at Gettysburg had a great impact on the national notions and approach to freedom and civil equality.
Bibliography lists 3 sources.