OK

This is only a Preview!

You must Publish this diary to make this visible to the public,
or click 'Edit Diary' to make further changes first.

Posting a Diary Entry

Daily Kos welcomes blog articles from readers, known as diaries. The Intro section to a diary should be about three paragraphs long, and is required. The body section is optional, as is the poll, which can have 1 to 15 choices. Descriptive tags are also required to help others find your diary by subject; please don't use "cute" tags.

When you're ready, scroll down below the tags and click Save & Preview. You can edit your diary after it's published by clicking Edit Diary. Polls cannot be edited once they are published.

If this is your first time creating a Diary since the Ajax upgrade, before you enter any text below, please press Ctrl-F5 and then hold down the Shift Key and press your browser's Reload button to refresh its cache with the new script files.

ATTENTION: READ THE RULES.

  1. One diary daily maximum.
  2. Substantive diaries only. If you don't have at least three solid, original paragraphs, you should probably post a comment in an Open Thread.
  3. No repetitive diaries. Take a moment to ensure your topic hasn't been blogged (you can search for Stories and Diaries that already cover this topic), though fresh original analysis is always welcome.
  4. Use the "Body" textbox if your diary entry is longer than three paragraphs.
  5. Any images in your posts must be hosted by an approved image hosting service (one of: imageshack.us, photobucket.com, flickr.com, smugmug.com, allyoucanupload.com, picturetrail.com, mac.com, webshots.com, editgrid.com).
  6. Copying and pasting entire copyrighted works is prohibited. If you do quote something, keep it brief, always provide a link to the original source, and use the <blockquote> tags to clearly identify the quoted material. Violating this rule is grounds for immediate banning.
  7. Be civil. Do not "call out" other users by name in diary titles. Do not use profanity in diary titles. Don't write diaries whose main purpose is to deliberately inflame.
For the complete list of DailyKos diary guidelines, please click here.

Please begin with an informative title:

I was born on February 12, Lincoln's birthday, leaving me little choice but to love the man and everything he represents.  I had Lincoln-themed parties as a kid, and in elementary school my Dad came in one day with a beard and stove-pipe hat, carrying a log-cabin cake for my class.   I memorized the Gettysburg Address in fifth grade, and later stood awestruck before the Lincoln Memorial, reading and re-reading the Address and the Second Inaugural inscribed on the walls.

Even with that background, I was stunned by my emotional response to Steven Spielberg's Lincoln. I wept briefly when the 13th Amendment passed, to cheers and peeling church bells, and then shook with sobs as the final credits rolled.

Part of my reaction is a tribute to the performances, particularly Daniel Day-Lewis as Lincoln, and Tommy Lee Jones as Thaddeus Stevens.  (Message to the Academy:  There is no need to nominate anyone else for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor.)  Those are towering performances -- I felt I was watching a documentary following Lincoln around in January 1865. That's how convincing it was.

But that's only one part of why I wept.  

I also wept because I remembered the faces of the free blacks rejoicing in the gallery when the amendment passed, and thought "do they have any sense of what's in store for them and their descendants in the next 150 years?"  Any sense of the struggles they faced against vicious efforts to undo what had been done in 1865? Jim Crow, the Klan, the Scottsboro Boys, Brown v. Bd. of Educ., the '60s and Civil Rights Laws, Martin Luther King, Jr., his assassination, the "Southern Strategy," President Barack Obama, racist backlash to President Obama.
I also wept because despite those struggles, the 2012 Election and the "War on Voting" showed that we still need to fight against the voter suppression tactics of loathsome, cynical politicians like Jon Husted, Tom Corbett and Rick Scott.   It is a disgrace that they are still seeking to overturn the very progress that cost 600,000 lives 150 years ago, and it is the media's lasting shame that they have not properly branded them as rogue racists.
I also wept because I continually thought of the struggle to pass Obamacare while watching the tactics used by Lincoln and his allies to get the votes to pass the 13th Amendment. The overt bribery and questionable deals made the supposed Obamacare "scandals" like the "cornhusker kickback" look like models of honest governance.  The cornhusker kickback was no worse than thousands of provisions inserted into thousands of bills throughout American history.  And yet it became such a symbol of supposed "corruption" that the "brilliant" Justice Scalia revealed at Supreme Court oral argument that he thought it made it into the final law.
Finally, I also wept because I believe that Lincoln is my (and your) spiritual ancestor.  That we here are part of a multi-century continuum of progress toward a better country and a better world, and are willing to work, struggle and persevere to keep going in that direction.

Update:  Thank you to the Rescue Rangers, who put this up on the Community Spotlight, and enabled it to be Recommended!

Intro

You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to Upper West on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 10:01 AM PST.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.