RE: [RLC-Action] Baracj Obama: Better than Lincoln?
Posted on Sun, Jun. 26, 2005
CHICAGO - Sen. Barack Obama sees parallels between Abraham Lincoln's life and his own, but he says the nation's 16th president might not have envisioned a black man occupying the seat he now holds.
Obama, who occupies the U.S. Senate seat from Illinois that Lincoln lost to Stephen Douglas in 1858, wrote about how Lincoln shaped his life in an upcoming special issue of Time magazine.
"In Lincoln's rise from poverty, his ultimate mastery of language and law, his capacity to overcome personal loss and remain determined in the face of repeated defeat - in all this, he reminded me not just of my own struggles. He also reminded me of a larger, fundamental element of American life - the enduring belief that we can constantly remake ourselves to fit our larger dreams," Obama wrote in a package dubbed 'Uncovering the Real Abe Lincoln,' on newsstands Monday.
Obama, a Chicago Democrat who is just the fifth black senator in U.S. history, also raised questions about Lincoln's role in ending slavery.
"I cannot swallow whole the view of Lincoln as the Great Emancipator," Obama said. "As a law professor and civil rights lawyer and as an African-American, I am fully aware of his limited views on race. Anyone who actually reads the Emancipation Proclamation knows it was more a military document than a clarion call for justice."
And as for what Lincoln may have thought about Obama's election to the Senate in 2004?
"He may not have dreamed of that exact outcome. But I like to believe he would have appreciated the irony," Obama said.
Rekindle the Rivalries. Sign up for Fantasy Football