Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Abraham Lincoln: An Enduring Icon of Leadership

Americans of all ages continue to be captivated by the life, death, legacy and message of Abraham Lincoln.

During speaking engagements with students, educators and law enforcement personnel throughout the country, I am continually astounded at the detailed information individuals have on Abraham Lincoln including specific dates from his life, the Civil War, the Gettysburg Address, the Emancipation Proclamation, his second inaugural and his assassination by John Wilkes Booth at Ford's Theater in Washington, DC on April 14, 1865.

During recent character education presentations, students from a 3rd grade class were able to recently quote to me with admirable precision President Lincoln's words from Gettysburg on November 19, 1863:
"that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
In our troubled times, so besieged by violence, turmoil and scandal, Abraham Lincoln remains an icon of dedication to country. From his early days of studying by the fireside as a young boy to his rise to the presidency, the character of Lincoln is worthy of emulation. Lincoln's courage and perseverance in the face of great adversity serve as an example that what is needed in America's response to the current crisis of violence, scandal and division is newfound perseverance, unity, strength and transformation.

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