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Response To Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address

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During a time in history when the United States was as divided as it had ever been, Abraham Lincoln delivered his Second Inaugural Address. The Civil War had been raging for four years, and victory was in sight for the Union. Many northern politicians wanted Lincoln to harshly punish and humiliate the South for all of the violence that its succession had caused. However, part of the wisdom that turned Lincoln into an iconic president was his intent to end the war “with malice towards none, with charity for all” and “ to bind up the nation's wounds, [and] to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan” (Second Inaugural Address). He was not just talking about helping the Union soldiers and their families, but also the Confederates, because he realized that there would be no lasting peace if the South surrendered but was then left destitute and bitter. This wisdom can be applied to almost any conflict. The goal is to win, but the cost of defeat to the other side, and how that may affect the future, is always in the mind of someone wise like Lincoln.…show more content…
Lincoln seemed to know that the moral laws of the universe were against slavery, but also that the North benefitted greatly from the evils of the slave system: “ [God] gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came” (Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address). In acknowledging the fact that the North also can be blamed for slavery and the war, he put the nation on a quicker path towards
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