Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Popular Presidents
The New American Magazine ^ | 10-16-09 | Jack Kenny

Posted on 10/18/2009 1:57:49 PM PDT by ChrisInAR

In 1909, in the great state of Illinois, school teachers one February day were directed to spend at least half the school day in public exercises, patriotic music, and recitations of sayings, verses, and speeches to mark the centennial birthday of a great hero. At the end of it all, they were to have their students face in the direction of Springfield and chant in unison the following:

“A blend of mirth and sadness, smiles and tears;

“A quaint knight errant of the pioneers;

“A homely hero, born of star and sod;

“A Peasant Prince, a masterpiece of God.”

Who was this masterpiece of God, this knight errant and heroic offspring “of star and sod”? Well if Springfield, Illinois, is Mecca, Abraham Lincoln must be the American Muhammad — if not the American Allah. While our 16th President was considered fair game for scathing political and editorial attacks during his life, his sudden death by an assassin’s bullet inspired the near-deification of “Father Abraham.” In 1868, Edward M. Stanton, Lincoln’s Secretary of War, read the “Gettysburg Address” at campaign appearances for Republican presidential candidate Ulysses S. Grant and concluded tearfully: “That is the voice of God speaking through the lips of Abraham Lincoln!... You hear the voice of Father Abraham here tonight.”

Nor did it end there. “Destiny made Lincoln the agency of fulfillment, held the inherited covenant inviolate and gave him to the ages,” Warren G. Harding proclaimed decades later. So great was the shadow Lincoln cast over the land that in the 1940s, Everett Dirksen, then a Congressman from Illinois, opined that the first duty of any politician was to “get right” with Lincoln. Nearly a century after the President’s martyrdom, historian David Donald would observe: “The Lincoln cult is almost a national religion.” Almost?

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government
KEYWORDS: jackkenny; lincoln; presidents; reagan; roosevelt; tna

1 posted on 10/18/2009 1:57:49 PM PDT by ChrisInAR
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: ChrisInAR

Very interesting article. “God save us from great Presidents.”

In the end, I’d have to say I agree.

2 posted on 10/18/2009 2:18:17 PM PDT by john in springfield (One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe such things.No ordinary man could be such a fool.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson