Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Abraham Lincoln Died 150 Years Ago Today

Image from source, Mother Jones
The fact that Abraham Lincoln's death by assassination happened 150 years ago today is a little stunning when you think about it. In the scheme of things, that really isn't that long ago. I'll be 50 next year, and it's hard for me to believe that just three of my life-spans separate the here and now from Civil War America.

It's also roughly the same amount of time that it took to go from basically no modern conveniences to the world of today. There were some important inventions in use at the time of course, from photography to locomotives to telegraphs, but if you plunked a Millennial kid into 1865, he'd pretty much find it to be a dystopian nightmare. Similarly, if you plucked Lincoln out of Ford's Theater, and into 2015, he'd be mortified by the modern Republican Party.

In many of the discussions about civil rights (spurred by either a gay rights issue or Ferguson and the other racially charged controversies with police), I've seen countless conservative Republicans go on about how it's the Republican Party that blazed the civil rights trail. They'll start with Lincoln, and go all the way up to the Civil Rights Era. They'll point to George Wallace and other Democrats as proof. They're not wrong. . .but they're not right either. They disregard the massive shift both parties went through over the issue, and the fact that the "Dixiecrats" jumped ship and effectively overtook the Republican Party.

Look at a map sometime of the red and blue states, particularly in the 2008 and 2012 elections. Look at a map of the progression of same-sex marriage states. They echo closely the map of Confederate States vs. United States of Lincoln's time. I don't think that's a coincidence.


Lincoln Died 150 Years Ago Today and If He Were Still Alive He Wouldn’t Have Been a Republican

On April 14, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth while attending a play at Ford's Theater in Washington, DC. Lincoln died the following morning, just six days after General Robert E. Lee had surrendered and the Civil War, which lasted four years and killed an estimated 750,000 soldiers, officially ended. . .

Read more at: Mother Jones

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