Abraham Lincoln Cornerstone Speech Analysis

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When studied carefully, the historical significance of these two documents become very clear. From the significance of the cornerstone speech to the south and their movement at the time, to the significant differing views the north and south had of then president Abraham Lincoln. These documents help provide, at least, a glimpse of some of the issues that were forefront before, during and after the civil war. It is therefore important to be aware of some of the implications of these documents and the effects they might have had at the time. Beginning with Alexander H Stephens’ cornerstone speech, we are able to gain some type of understanding of his thinking and ultimately the reasoning for his support for the secession of the southern …show more content…
This was especially the case with the northern states. Championed by Abraham Lincoln, the north was definitely against the institution of slavery, however, they didn’t wish to go as far as to pronounce the Negro man as their equal in every respect. As stated by Lincoln in one of his debates with Stephen Douglas, just because it was his desire to have the institution of slavery eventually eradicated from the union and wanted to respect the God-given rights of the Negro man doesn’t mean he considered them to be equals with the white man. In fact, one could reasonably conclude from his many speeches, that Lincoln viewed African Americans as inferior beings and as a result believed that it was up to the superior white race to have mercy upon them and grant them certain rights. This, in some respect, was the America could show to its superiority and inspire the entire …show more content…
Stephens also insinuated that the leaders of the union were to be regarded as hypocrites. According to him, the desire of the south to secede should not be met with resistance from the north. If the north really believed in their characterization of the institution of slavery as evil, then they should have absolutely no problem letting go of those in support of slavery. However, he believed the north was content with reaping some of the benefits of slavery while denouncing it in the same breath. He believed if the United States government, the northern states in particular, genuinely believed in the principles they proclaimed, they would have no problem doing away with the states that did not wish to do away with slavery. Stephens, an initial proponent of secession without the need for war, also believed the confederate states should be able to break from the union freely and without consequence as they freely joined the union in the first

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