When looking back through history at an extremely divisive time for the United States, one cannot help but think of the Civil War and the time leading up to it.
Upon entering his administration, Abraham Lincoln knew that the nation was divided, and many were apprehensive as to what was to come in the years ahead. The nation was far more fractured than it is today, but Lincoln knew that he had to deliver a message on his inauguration day that sought to unite and not divide. He knew he had enemies that were working hard against him within his own nation that he was now sworn to lead.
“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”
It was a call to unite, despite knowing that so many were still against him. Lincoln would do all he could to save the nation. Ultimately, we had our most brutal war, but we did come back together.
Now, compare the eloquence, compassion, and true leadership of Lincoln’s speech to that of Donald Trump’s New Year’s Eve tweet discussing enemies:
“Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do. Love!”
Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don't know what to do. Love!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 31, 2016
Not only is Trump purely making everything about himself and not the nation, but he’s belittling his enemies and those working against him. He’s not seeking to unite whatsoever, and to be frank, this tweet is outright embarrassing.
Trump was not the leader we needed, and the American people, as a whole, chose someone else. However, because of an archaic Electoral College system, Trump was able to maneuver and manipulate a victory. Now, he belittles the very people who he seeks to lead.
To be blunt, there is no comparison between Abraham Lincoln and Donald Trump. That is like comparing apples to a tornado fill with screwdrivers. As Americans, we should all be embarrassed by this tweet, but we also need to remember when true leadership lead the way to unity.
Over the past eight years, despite constant criticism from opposition, President Barack Obama took a cue from Abraham Lincoln and always sought to unite instead of divide despite constant division being ever apparent. Hopefully, Trump will soon come to his senses, away from his narcissism, an eventually be a leader for all Americans, not just the ones who voted for him.
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