A Critique of DiLorenzo's The Real Lincoln Essay

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A Critique of the Real Lincoln The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War, by Thomas J. DiLorenzo completely shatters the illusion of the 16th President as the liberator of the slaves. DiLorenzo provides convincing evidence for Lincoln’s overt racism as expressed in his documented views on racial supremacy as stated in his desire to colonize all American blacks outside the United States (p. 4); Lincoln’s views were matched by the majority in the North who used such tools as state constitutional amendments to prohibit the emigration of black people into Northern states like Lincoln’s home of Illinois (p. 4); and that the Presidents war which killed 620, 000 Americans and destroyed 40% of the…show more content…
DiLorenzo shows that Lincoln’s entire agenda was focused on advancing these three goals. Many southern states believed with the coming of Lincoln into the White House he would push for his agenda of increased federal government spending and control. "So when Lincoln suspended the writ of Habeas corpus in order to arrest those accused of treason, the "Peace Democrats" had more ammunition against the president. There was much controversy as to whether the president had the power to suspend habaes corpus, and it was argued that only Congress had that right. The writ of habeas corpus protects people from arbitrary arrest and detainment. The power to do so was both that of the legislative branch as well as the judicial branch. It was unclear whether the Philadelphia convention placed it in Article I, just to identify it or define it as a legislative function. Either way, Lincoln did so, and the suspension of the writ of Habeas corpus brought on thousands of arbitrary arrests. Many of those who were arrested were spies, foreigners and smugglers. The question is: Did Lincoln go too far and unlawfully exercise his executive powers to manipulate constitutional limits? Thomas DiLorenzo spends the rest of the book discussing secession, Lincoln’s assumption of “war powers,” his resort to total warfare, the story of Reconstruction, the cruel Indian

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