Recently, Steven Spielberg released his award-winning film Lincoln. In one scene, Lincoln saunters into the War Room and has one of those conversations, mixing philosophy with his thoughtful wit, with two young men.
The United States, from day one, was a project about principles and ideals.
"Second Term Begins With a Sweeping Agenda for Equality," ran the eight-column banner in which The Washington Post captured the essence of Obama's second inaugural.
Presidential inaugurations are milestones in American politics and even history. And they may indicate a lot more than how far we have come and may have to go.
Abraham Lincoln, deeply troubled by four years of Civil War bloodletting, gave a great second inaugural address in 1865. By then Lincoln saw slavery as a terrible stench in God’s nostrils, so he mused about why God was taking so long to blow it away with His mighty breath.
He swore his oath of office on Abraham Lincoln's Bible. He has asked to give the State of the Union address on Lincoln's birthday. He rode to Washington in 2009 on a train route similar to Lincoln's in 1861. He has compared his critics to Lincoln's critics.
Watching the movie Lincoln, I thought there were some similarities between President Abraham Lincoln and President Barack Obama. Both men were popular during their times. During the film, Mary Todd Lincoln pleads with her husband not to squander his popularity with the American people by forcing Congress to pass the 13th amendment ending slavery as the Civil War was already coming to an end.
President Abraham Lincoln had been warned by Gen. George B. McClellan <i>not </i>to interfere with the institution of slavery. McClellan was a “War Democrat,” willing to fight to preserve the Union, but unwilling to do anything about the root cause of the rebellion that threatened the life of the nation.
America is now in a time that in some ways resembles the 1850s, when freedom-loving people, attentive to political and cultural trends, saw a great crisis coming.
‘Daniel Day Lewis was so deep in character he insisted everyone on set call him Mr. President. Coincidentally to this day Al Gore does the same wherever he goes.’
What is it about Abraham Lincoln that has captured the hearts and minds of the American public since his assassination nearly 150 years ago?
Neil Cavuto reports on their preparations not for the fiscal cliff, but for a special screening of the movie Lincoln.
"When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another ..." So begins the Declaration of Independence of the 13 colonies from the king and country to which they had given allegiance since the settlers first came to Jamestown and Plymouth Rock.
Every schoolchild with enough smarts and curiosity to get beyond the latest video game of "Call of Duty" ought to go see "Lincoln," the movie, and check out the references and his own attention span. It requires patience, but it shows through dramatic action how a self-taught rustic from the deep backwoods had the emotional and intellectual discipline to overcome poverty and grow up to be a president to rank among the greatest.
For decades, it has been obvious that there are irreconcilable differences between Americans who want to control the lives of others and those who wish to be left alone. Which is the more peaceful solution: Americans using the brute force of government to beat liberty-minded people into submission or simply parting company? In a marriage, where vows are ignored and broken, divorce is the most peaceful solution. Similarly, our constitutional and human rights have been increasingly violated by a government instituted to protect them. Americans who support constitutional abrogation have no intention of mending their ways.
It is Steven Spielberg's singular achievement to have made a heroic movie about compromise and petty corruption. In "Lincoln," he pans away from a field of corpses 130 miles down the road in Petersburg and puts a tight frame on the Cabinet meetings, legislative debates and backroom confrontations where the final, decisive battles of the Civil War were fought. Combat determined the outcome of the War Between the States. Politics determined its meaning, culminating in passage of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution.
Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” is a different film than one would expect from the brilliant filmmaker responsible for ageless films like “Schindler’s List” and “Saving Private Ryan.”
Someone once said, history repeats itself because no one was listening the first time. All one needs to do is look at the ever-widening ideological divide and partisan bickering going on in America to understand Americans are slow learners. And, unless a Lincolnesque figure rises to the occasion, America is headed for another Civil War sans the bloodshed.
One of the worst things that could be said about any of us is that greatness passed before us, and we failed to recognize it.
Looking back all the way to America's Civil War, there have been three dominant presidential coalitions.
IN DECEMBER 1862, from his military headquarters in Mississippi, Major General Ulysses S. Grant issued a directive expelling "Jews as a class" from the immense war zone known as the Department of the Tennessee. General Orders No. 11 was the most notorious anti-Jewish edict ever issued by an official of the US government, and it was overruled by the commander-in-chief -- President Abraham Lincoln -- as soon as he learned of it in Washington.
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