Thursday, May 18, 2017

Lincoln Ch 3-4 by C. M.

  The reading on chapters three and four of George Mcgovern’s, Abraham Lincoln, are about how the Southern States wanted to secede from the United States; beginning with South Carolina. In chapter four, the main focus of the chapter was the Emancipation proclamation that would free slaves in the Southern States. The author’s purpose is to inform the reader of the events leading up to the Civil War, how it ended, and how Abraham Lincoln handled the situation. The author provides evidence such as quotes from Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address in March 4, 1861. Mcgovern also provides quotes from historians such as Richard Striner.

   The Author does not really present a point of view, the purpose is to inform readers and present their own point of view. The author expresses how Abraham Lincoln was highly criticized by Southerners and other politicians. For instance, when Lincoln read his draft of the Emancipation Proclamation to his cabinet, Salmon Chase and Montgomery Blair thought that the idea was beyond the president’s power and would make the border southern states into the Confederacy. Another example on how Lincoln pushed the boundaries on what was legal was the removal of habeas corpus and enacting the very first military draft. We heard the Southerners’ point of view, which was that the government should not interfere with state laws in order to protect slavery. The voices that were left unheard were the bordering Southern states.

   The in class discussion to the reading better helped my understanding as to why the Civil War happened. For example, the class activity in reading the Inaugural Address and summarizing paragraphs helped me understand that Lincoln was criticized for being a hypocrite about not having any interest in changing the slavery laws and after he ordered that the “rebelling” states give up their slaves. After having further discussions in class, it was concluded that yes, Lincoln was hypocritical but that the Secession and the Civil War was inevitable and it took a man like Lincoln to resolve the issues regardless of the approval of the American people. Lincoln wanted to preserve the Union and would do whatever it took.

     In a separate discussion with Professor Arrowsmith, we spoke about how Senator Henry Clay came up with the Great Compromise of 1850 to resolve issues between the North and the South and settled other disputes regarding territory. But the compromise was only a temporary solution and with the ongoing feud between the north and south. We concluded that Abraham Lincoln was the one that would find the solution whether his ideas were popular or not. The questions that still remain is if Lincoln’s critics changed the way they viewed him as a President; if he became more respected or more hated.