Fiche de révision de vocabulaire d'anglais - Abraham Lincoln – A Great President?

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Leçon 8 : Abraham Lincoln – A Great President?

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Résumé en français : Barack Obama cite souvent Abraham Lincoln, mais le seizième président des Etats-Unis fut-il vraiment un grand leader ?

In “ Rating the Presidents” Patrick J. Buchanan writes, “Certainly, Washington is our greatest president, the father of our country and the captain who set our course . But Lincoln is great only if one believes that preventing South Carolina, Georgia and the Gulf states from peacefully seceding justified the suspension of the Constitution, a dictatorship , 600,000 dead and a resort to a total war that ravaged the South for generations."
Research findings suggest that one reason Lincoln led the North against the South was to safeguard the federal tax revenue which would have been lost if the Southern states seceded peacefully.
As to the criticism that Lincoln suspended the American Constitution then it’s true if we believe the contents of James G. Randall’s “Constitutional Problems Under Lincoln”. According to Randall, Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus - an undeniable fact . He ordered the military to arrest tens of thousands of political opponents and in the New York Draft Riots (July 11-16, 1863) protesters of Lincoln’s draft policy to send more people to fight in the Civil War were shot at and some were killed .
If we give some credibility to the reports of Lincoln’s “ dark sides ” then the most disturbing “truth” is that he wasn’t the “Great Emancipator” and he didn’t start the Civil War to free the slaves .
It has been said that Lincoln would do anything to preserve the Union even if it meant shooting people who did not agree with his policies and suspending articles of the American Constitution.
In 1862 Lincoln wrote in a letter to Horace Greeley a leading Northern newspaperman , “My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and it is not either to save or destroy slavery . If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it.”
Much has been written about Obama taking the oath of office on a bible used by Lincoln. Appearing at a televised concert at the Lincoln Memorial and traveling on a train to Washington DC retracing the final stages of Lincoln’s journey for the same purpose .
However if some historians are to be believed, Lincoln arrived in Washington DC late at night on an unmarked train for his safety . His wife and children who were on the official train were assailed and several people were shot by soldiers during a near riot .
If the critical historians are correct about Lincoln’s “dark sides” let’s hope Barack Obama manifests some of Lincoln’s finer qualities and by doing so becomes a great American president.

By Stan

 

 

 

 

 

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Fiche de révision de vocabulaire d'anglais - Abraham Lincoln – A Great President?
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