I’m very proud of our country in a lot of ways today. In many ways we needed somebody to help us believe in ourselves again. We needed to believe that “Yes we can.” And it’s not a yes we can do this…or yes we can do that. It’s just this general sentiment that nobody seems to really be able to put their finger on.
Or perhaps it’s this belief that “yes, we can do anything” – very much void of any specifics (much like Obama’s presidential campaign). Which is a good starting point. We need to believe in ourselves. It makes us feel good, too.
And while this day marks a very significant accomplishment for us as Americans, I ultimately think it will end up being yet another point of shame in the history of our nation.
On the contrary, Abraham Lincoln’s presidency is marked as a great point of pride in American history. It was his leadership that eventually led to the abolition of slavery in the United States. I’m sure there were many other important issues at stake in America at that time, but people like me only know one of them – slavery.
And the magnitude of the issue makes it justly so. Our country did not recognize the rights of African-Americans. In fact, many people did not even think African-Americans were fully human. This is how they rationalized that blacks therefore had no human rights.
Abraham Lincoln could have merely said that “determining whether or not African-Americans are actually human or not is, uh, above my pay grade.” And perhaps many of the elitists and lemmings at the time may have thought, “oh, how brilliant of him.”
But he didn’t do that. Lincoln knew the obvious: that African-Americans are humans too and that slavery is gravely wrong. He was willing to risk his life for it. He was a real leader that believed in his principles. He never hid behind his “pay grade.”
This is why Lincoln is remembered as one of our greatest presidents.
We are in a drastically different situation today. We’ve just elected an African-American president of the United States. We’ve come a long, long way. Or so it seems.
In Barack Obama’s lifetime our nation has struggled in accepting African-Americans and treating them as equals. Finally, we’ve had a breakthrough. A black president.
Unfortunately, in that same struggle to the top for one class of people – in that same lifetime – we’ve trampled the rights of yet another entire class of people. Indeed, many of us no longer believe these people are actually human. Sound familiar?
Of course, I am speaking of the 50 million abortions that have occurred in the US alone during the last lifetime. 50 million voiceless human beings that were denied and are still being denied their human rights. That are treated as garbage. That are not given a seat at the table or a spot on the bus. That don’t get the chance to drink from any water fountain or attend any school. They will never get the opportunity to march on Washington. They are not even given the dignity of being treated as 3/5 of a person. They won’t even get the chance to be somebody’s slave.
Their lives are ended before they are able to do any of those things. Perhaps if they were around to organize their own “FIFTY-Million Man March” they would be a bit harder to ignore.
Yet in all of the hoopla, pep rallying, $150 million inauguration festivities, and worries of our own 401ks we hear nothing of these 50 million human deaths. We hear nothing of the 5 million more human deaths of unborn children that will take place during Obamas first (and hopefully only) term. And when he’s asked about it he slickly replies that such matters are “above his pay grade.”
That’s not courageous leadership. It’s political pandering and deliberate obfuscation. And that’s why when we look back in history at the presidency of Barack Obama – no matter what he does with the economy, the war on terror, the environment, energy or anything else – he will be praised less for what he did than he is shunned for what he failed to do. And it won’t only be for what he fails to do. He will be shunned for what he has promised to actively and aggressively promote!
I don’t know what it’s going to take for us to wake up and protect the most innocent humans among us. To end the gravest injustice in the history of the world. Maybe Americans just don’t care enough.
Lincoln had a nation of people willing to literally fight a war and give their lives for justice. And that’s what it ultimately took. I know of about 50 million people that would be willing to fight this war today. And they would give their lives doing so – in truth they already have. I guess the rest of us aren’t to that point – yet.