What Would Lincoln Do?

S M Chen
5 min readJan 14, 2024

Abraham Lincoln, our 16th POTUS, was one of our most beloved Presidents. He has also been ranked by historians as one of our best POTUS.

Photo: Author

It is he who signed the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863, declaring “all persons held as slaves are, and henceforward shall be free.”

He waged the Civil War of 1861–1865, which sometimes pitted brother against brother and father against son, and cost the nation $5.2B and 620,000 lives.

To put that into context, the number of American fatalities in the Civil War exceeded those in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican War, the Spanish American War, WWI, WWII and the Korean War combined.

Lincoln desired the preservation of the Union. It would be a costly wish.

Both for the nation and for him.

His assassination at the Ford’ Theater on April 15, 1865 by John Wilkes Booth came about because of Lincoln’s promoting black citizenship.

Candidate Nimarata Nikki Randhawa Haley (aka Nikki Haley), perhaps the closest 2nd in the upcoming Republican primaries for the highest office in the land, has taken heat for her initial refusal to name slavery as a cause of the Civil War.

Pundits have argued whether her omission was accidental or deliberate.