The ‘Great Emancipator’
Abraham Lincoln stated in his own words that the Emancipation Proclamation was a ‘military necessity’:
“If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union.”
Lincoln was also a strong supporter of the Illinois law that forbade marriage between whites & blacks & didn’t believe that they should live amongst each other. He admitted to not believing that blacks would ever be seen as political or social equals to their white counterparts, stating:
“I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races; I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people.”
“I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”
Lincoln made several attempts to send freed slaves ‘back to Africa’ & colonize them, a step that led to the founding of the country now known as Liberia. Many others were emancipated to Haiti & Central America.
So Lincoln wasn’t as great as we were made to believe he was. Despite his blatant racism, I can still see some of the logic in his stances, which were aligned with the beliefs millions of other men’s of that era; many of which still exist today. The KKK had 4 million members nationwide at its peak; Those ideals have not entirely changed or receded. Lincoln understood & recognized this & tried to do what he thought was best, by organizing committees for blacks to have & be sent to their own nations to call home.
To this day, Africans in America have not been awarded the 40 acres & mules they were promised. Although reparations have been paid out by the USA to other nationalities, some of whose people suffered great mistreatment OUTSIDE of the country, they have never been awarded to African Americans. The abolition of slavery & civil rights were put in place, but that never stopped the mistreatment of African people & has yet to bring us full equality. So in some ways, Lincoln was right.
Had everyone been treated as equals from the beginning, many of the issues that plague most poor African communities in the United States would not exist. The Jim Crow laws worked wonders against African people & in some ways, they are still being practiced, so there is still a great deal of healing that needs to take place in the consciousness of African people who have displaced in the Americas due to the slave trade. Part of my plan is to help undo that damage, to restore self-love amongst African people everywhere, so that unity & overall uplifting of our people is a reality. That will positively affect not only African people, but humanity as a whole!