Having displayed only a fragment of Senate candidate Lincoln's remarks, we might speculate that David Collins would have us remove Lincoln's name from our streets and other monuments to him. With Lincoln's remarks correctly reported as a fragment, the whole of Lincoln is too easily missed as he was responding to fear mongering remarks made by "Judge Douglas." Lincoln knew his voters and was attempting to lead them to the Republican Party's position of preventing slavery's spread to other US territories, a policy of containment. Politics as the art of the possible, had become evident in the 1856 election, when the abolitionist Republican candidate for president lost. The Civil War began in direct consequence of Lincoln's election as president. Beginning the war effort only to preserve the Union, Lincoln later moved the goal post towards war's end, feeling this cruel war had no meaning at all with any continued presence of slavery. He then promoted and achieved the total abolition of slavery and the addition of three constitutional amendments which assured to former slaves a full standing as free US citizens. Because Democrats have not given up on slavery, the full intent of Lincoln's amendments were not realized until the 1960s. The income tax and the welfare system continue as the real monument to slavery. As for statues, we should borrow some words from Lincoln's second inaugural address after reading its entirety. "With malice toward none and charity for all, let us bind up the nation's wounds..." Words for today. Continuous picking at old scars will not achieve this.
Leonidas H. Miller, Mattoon