Abraham Lincoln was America’s first American President. His “Emancipation Proclamation” of January 1, 1863 declared that all black slaves in states “in rebellion against the U.S.” were “forever free”. However, it then took Union soldiers more than two years to defeat the Confederate armies, occupy those states, and make that Proclamation a reality.
President Trump was supposed to have his rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma today, Friday, June 19. Today is an African-American holiday known as “Juneteenth”. It celebrates the day the Union army arrived in Texas on June 19, 1865, and freed all black slaves there.
The Emancipation Proclamation, an Executive Order, could not and did not free slaves any in the four “border” states which were not “in rebellion”. Those four border states were Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky and Missouri. The President could not free slaves in those states because slaves at that time were property, and the 5th Amendment of U.S. Constitution does not allow property to be taken from owners without “just compensation. However, the property of rebels can be seized as “contraband” under military law. However, President Lincoln persuaded voters in Maryland to abolish slavery on their own in 1864. Lincoln also lobbied for passage of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to permanently free all slaves in America during December of 1865.
Democrats attacked President Trump when he scheduled a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma for today, June 19th. They said he was “insensitive” to hold his rally on “Juneteenth”, an “African American” holiday. President Trump moved the rally to the following day after getting advice to do so. That was bad advice.
First, moving the date looked like an admission that it is somehow bad for a Republican President to hold an event on a holiday celebrating when America’s first Republican President ended slavery in America.
Second, President Trump missed a great “teachable moment” to explain how Republicans fought to end slavery and racism in America for the past 166 years, while Democrats still fight to keep them.
Here is the truth.
On February 22, 1861, on his way to being sworn in as President, newly elected Abraham Lincoln stopped to make a speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia. He repeated his lifelong belief that America was created by our Declaration of Independence of 1776. He said that Declaration was about far more than the “mere separation of the colonies from the Motherland”. He said our nation was founded on the “self-evident” truths that we are all created equal and endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights”. We recite those words at the beginning of every meeting Libertyandprosperity.com.
- Our Declaration of Independence of July 4, 1776 was America’s first step to end slavery in America. It declared that we are all created equal and endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, including “liberty”. Abraham Lincoln in 1861 said: “that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence. . . gave liberty. . . to the world. . .” and “promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men”.
- Between 1780 and 1804, seven of the 13 original states, including New Jersey, abolished slavery.
- In 1787, America banned slavery from the future states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
- In 1808, American banned the slave trade from Africa.
- Starting in 1820, Americans in the North and West fought, often violently, to stop the spread of slavery west of the Mississippi.
- Started in 1837, Americans in the North and West started an economic war against slavery in Maryland, Delaware, Kentucky and Missouri by helping thousands of slaves escape and resisting efforts by bounty hunters to recapture them. That is described in detail in Border War, a book by Stanley C. Harrold in 2010.
- From 1861 to 1865, roughly 310,000 white Americans from the North and West as well as 40,000 blacks died to end slavery in the Civil War. Nearly 2 million whites and 180,000 blacks fought in the Union army and navy.
- In 1862, Union soldier freed all slaves they found in the South as “contraband” of rebels. In 1863, Republican President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation which freed all slaves in states “in rebellion against the United States”. In 1864 and 1865, Lincoln lobbied for and got the State of Maryland to abolish slavery on its own and the 13 Amendment permanently ending slavery throughout America.
- In 1865, and Democratic celebrity actor murdered Republican President Lincoln, knowing Lincoln’s Vice-President was a racist Democrat. Between 1866 and 1875, the Democratic Party organized the KKK to terrorize blacks and other Republicans in the South. In 1868, Republicans in Congress failed by one vote to impeach that Democratic Vice-President for failure to protect the rights of blacks in the South.
- From 1869 to 1877, Republican President Ulysses S. Grant used U.S. troops, including many blacks, to crush the KKK and protect the rights of blacks in the South.
- In 1876, racist white Democrats in the South made an alliance with corrupt big-city political machine Democrats in the North to win national elections, and again terrorize blacks and white Republicans in the South.
- Between 1877 and 1930, roughly four million blacks move out of the South run by Democrats, and found safety, prosperity, and freedom in northern cities, including Atlantic City, run by Republicans. This was known as the “Great Migration”. In those days, 95% of black Americans voted Republican.
- For years, most Americans in the North and most blacks throughout America celebrated Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on February 12, as the holiday to celebrate America’s “a new birth of freedom” free of slavery. “Black History Month” in February began as “Negro History Week”. That week recognized how Republican leaders Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass worked together to end slavery, win the Civil War, and secure equal rights for black Americans.
How ironic! The same Democrats who now demand that Juneteenth, or June 19, be a national holiday, are the same Democrats who removed February 12 as a national holiday for Abraham Lincoln.
Seth Grossman, Executive Director