Thursday, October 24, 2013
Emancipation Proclamation -- Wartime Strategy or Cry for Freedom?
The articles you are reading for today provides two very different schools of thought about the Emancipation Proclamation. Supporters and opponents of the proclamation saw it serving two seemingly disparate purposes--one to seek foreign alliances, and one to catalyze nationwide emancipation. It was either celebrated joyfully or distrusted and feared.
But what was its function, really? In this "post-racial" (no, I don't believe that we actually are, hence the quotes), country that has elected a black president, we tend to celebrate Lincoln and his Proclamation. But we know that this 1863 decision only scratched the surface of the immense and violent racial battles that were still to come (and are still occurring today).
So what is it that we are celebrating? What is the Emancipation Proclamation?