The Black Lives Matter movement has persuaded Princeton University President Christopher Eisgruber to begin expunging the name and image of Woodrow Wilson (Princeton president for eight years) from campus buildings because of Wilson’s undeniably racist words and actions (He re-segregated the federal government, for example). Their next target, who should have been the movement’s first, should be the most publicly outspoken racist and white supremacist of all American presidents – Abraham Lincoln.
The college students involved in the Black Lives Matter movement should include in their education a reading of the book, Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln’s White Dream, by Lerone Bennett, Jr., the longtime editor of Ebony magazine. This should be followed up byThe Real Lincoln and Lincoln Unmasked by Yours Truly, along with Lincoln Uncensored by Joseph Fallon, and Lincoln the Man by Edgar Lee Masters. In these works they would learn that Woodrow Wilson, as abhorrent as he was, was a racial angel compared to Lincoln. Indeed, as Lerone Bennett, Jr. would argue, it is an abomination that young black students are taught, along with all other American students, to worship and idolize such a vulgar racist and white supremacist whose “white dream” was literally an all-white America, achieved by deporting all the black people from the country. Up to his dying day, Lincoln was busy plotting the deportation of all the black people in America, including the soon-to-be-freed slaves, as proven by the brilliantly-researched book, Colonization After Emancipation by Phillip Magness and Sebastian Page. “I have said that the separation of the races is the only perfect preventive of amalgamation [of the white and black races] . . . Such separation . . . must be affected by colonization” to Liberia, Central America, anywhere but the U.S. (Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln vol. II, p. 409).
“Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and . . . favorable to . . . our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime,” said Lincoln in a plea to ship all the black people back to Africa (Collected Works, vol. II, p. 409). And, “The place I am thinking about having for a colony [for the deported black people] is in Central America. It is nearer to us than Liberia” (Collected Works, vol. V, pp. 373-374). Woodrow Wilson “merely” re-segregated the federal government; if Lincoln had lived and carried out his plans there would have been no re-segregation because there would have been no black people to desegregate.
Frederick Douglas called Lincoln “the white man’s president” because he knew the man’s character and was familiar with his political speeches. He knew that during one of the Lincoln-Douglas debates Lincoln said “Free them [black slaves] and make them politically and socially our equals? My own feelings will not admit of this . . . . We can not then make them equals” (Collected Works, vol. II, p. 256). “There is a natural disgust in the minds of nearly all white people, to the idea of an indiscriminate amalgamation of the white and black races,” Lincoln announced (Collected Works, vol. II, p. 405). “What I would most desire,” he continued, “would be the separation of the white and black races” (Collected Works, vol. II, p. 521). And, “I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and black races . . . . I, as well as Judge [Stephen] Douglas, am in favor of the race to which I belong, having the superior position” (Collected Works, vol. II p. 16). This statement proves that Lincoln was the very definition of a white supremacist if ever there was one.
He was far worse than that, however. “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,” he scolded. “I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people” (Collected Works, vol. III, pp. 145-146). Moreover, said Abe as an Illinois state legislator, “I will to the very last stand by the law of this state, which forbids the marrying of white people with Negroes” (Collected Works, vol. III, p. 146). “Senator Douglas remarked . . . that . . . this government was made for the white people and not for Negroes. Why, in point of fact, I think so too,” said the hyper white supremacist from Springfield, Illinois whose language would make any KKK member blush (Collected Works, vol. II, p. 281).
Lincoln powerfully supported the explicit enshrinement of slavery in the text of the U.S. Constitution in his first inaugural address by endorsing the “Corwin Amendment” to the Constitution, which would have prohibited the federal government from ever interfering with Southern slavery. The amendment had already passed the post-secession, Northern-dominated House and Senate, guided by Lincoln’s secretary of state William Seward, who followed Lincoln’s pre-inaugural instructions. In the same speech, which few average Americans have ever read, Lincoln literally threatened, in his words, “invasion” and “bloodshed” in any state that failed to collect the federal tariff tax, which had just been more than doubled two days earlier when President James Buchanan signed the Morrill Tariff into law.
Following the Republican Party platform of 1860, Lincoln only opposed the extension of slavery into the new territories, which he said he wanted to reserve “for free white people.” He never said that this would somehow magically end all slavery some day, as his modern-day apologists and court historians laughingly argue. He was the strongest supporter of the Fugitive Slave Act that compelled Northerners to round up runaway slaves and return them to their owners. He enforced this evil law all throughout his presidency. As an Illinois state legislator he championed the Illinois Black Codes, which stripped the small number of free blacks in the state of any semblance of real citizenship; supported the Illinois state constitution’s prohibition of the emigration of black people into the state; and served as a “manager” of the Illinois Colonization Society, which sought to use state tax dollars to deport as many black people out of the state as possible. As a lawyer he never defended a runaway slave but did defend a slave owner (Robert Matson) who sought to regain his five runaway slaves (in 1847).
Lincoln did not even lift a finger to help get the Thirteenth Amendment through Congress to constitutionally end slavery, contrary to the tall tales and fables of the court historians, and the silly movie about Lincoln by Steven Spielberg. The preeminent, Pulitzer Prize-winning Lincoln scholar David Donald of Harvard writes on page 545 of his book, Lincoln, that there is: 1) no evidence that Lincoln ever did anything at all to change a single Democratic vote for the Thirteenth Amendment; and 2) that when several Republican congressman asked for his assistance he refused them.
All of this makes it seem trivial that the Black Lives Matter movement has chosen the lowly Woodrow Wilson as one of its first targets of extinction when an infinitely greater evil is staring them in the face. It is as though a man who is being charged by a grizzly bear and holding a hunting rifle decides to swat the mosquito on his arm instead of shooting the bear. I suppose this is a “testament” of sorts to the generations of lies and propaganda perpetrated by the Lincoln cult about the founding father of American statism, militarism, empire building, crony capitalism, bureaucratic centralization, and never-ending political deception.
“Social justice” will be served if the Black Lives Matter movement succeeds in getting Lincoln’s mug shot off the penny, tearing down the Lincoln Memorial, blasting his image from Mount Rushmore, and getting others to do the same to the hundreds, or thousands, of Lincoln statues and memorials that cover the American landscape. These are all American versions of Russia’s old Lenin and Stalin statues, the sole purpose of which is always to sanctify and deify the state and excuse or justify all of its crimes.