November 26, 2009

THE LONE MARTYR:

Today, Let Us Give Thanks for Our Union (Jay Cost, 11/26/09, Real Clear Politics)

With his Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln made clear his intention that the United States would become all free - that from so much death, "this nation, under God, shall have a new birth in freedom." Less than three years after Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation, the 13th Amendment to the Constitution would abolish slavery forever. Later, the 14th Amendment would ensure that all Americans have the full rights that citizenship entails, and the 15th Amendment would secure the right of all men to vote. Future generations of Americans could thus enjoy the fresh air of Liberty and Union, as Daniel Webster said.

Tragically, Abraham Lincoln would not live to see his vision of a more perfect Union enshrined in the Constitution.

Four American presidents have been murdered while in office. Yet only one has been martyred for the cause of the American Union. Abraham Lincoln. Like the hundreds of thousands of soldiers who perished during those horrible years of Civil War, he sacrificed his own life not only to save the Union, but to strengthen it. And indeed, Lincoln's heroic efforts ensured that the notions of secession and slavery were placed on the ash heap of history, where they rightly belong. None of us need worry that the Union will come under such a threat ever again; all of us are committed to the principle that government of the people, for the people, by the people shall never perish from the earth. For that, we owe a debt of gratitude to the sacrifices of Abraham Lincoln and the soldiers who lost their lives while under his command.

So today, in the year of our Lord two thousand and nine, and of the independence of the United States the two hundred thirty-fourth, it is altogether fitting and proper that we give thanks to the Almighty for this American Union, and those whom He has guided over the centuries to secure its blessings for us. Let's give thanks for the equanimity of George Washington, for the persuasive pen of Thomas Jefferson, for the keen mind of James Madison, for the eloquence of Daniel Webster, for the political craftsmanship of Henry Clay, and for the sacrifice of Abraham Lincoln, who gave the last full measure of devotion to preserve, protect, and defend this Union against the greatest threat it has ever faced.

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Posted by at November 26, 2009 12:13 AM
  
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