Of the many presidents who could be mindlessly passed off as heroes, there are a few truly heroic presidents. Among them, Abraham Lincoln stands tall. In 1861, when Lincoln was elected to office, the situations of the time called for a hero, and Lincoln stepped up.
All throughout his childhood, Lincoln had to struggle to make a living and learn as well. His mother died when he was only ten years old. He lived as a farmer, working largely what would be considered “minimum wage” jobs today. All this while Lincoln struggled to gain knowledge, especially of law. He was always determined to accomplish his goals, and was willing to work as much as it might take to do so.
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After gaining presidency, Lincoln was faced with a dilemma. The secession of the South, though never officially realized by Lincoln, called for some sort of action. Throughout the Civil War, and even after, Lincoln was very kind and forgiving to southerners. He kept in mind the greater good and strived for the reunion of the nation, rather than becoming angry toward the South. As he stated in a speech at the Gettysburg military cemetery, Lincoln wanted a “government of the people, by the people, for the people, (that) shall not perish from the earth.” After the Civil War, Lincoln urged the South to put away their weapons, and rejoin the Union.
One of Abraham Lincoln’s truly noble and well-known actions was the issuing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. This would proclaim all the slaves in the United States free from slavery. Though this meant little to the South at the time, it means everything today.
Any American resident, and hopefully anyone in the world can appreciate Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. Without it, our country wouldn’t demonstrate the same sense of freedom and equality it currently does. All people of minorities especially would regard Lincoln’s proclamation heroic. It freed them from possibly being born into slavery, and was the first national-scale step towards racial equality.
I personally consider this act heroic. For one, I am not a racist, nor do I support or participate in racial discrimination. In addition, we would live in a completely different world than we live in now if slavery were still allowed. Lincoln committed much of his time into abolishing slavery, earning a great deal of respect from many.
Abraham Lincoln did many other things which worked to define him as a hero. Not only did he go from a poor, hard-working child to president, but he did so with minimal assistance. He learned law and debate on his own, and had a great mind in both subjects. Prior to his election to presidency, he participated in a series of debates with Stephen Douglas, a well-known politician. While Lincoln was an unknown underdog, his ability to debate was apparent. He upstaged Douglas on various occasions, but more importantly established a name for himself. Lincoln is the definitive “self-made man.”