Have you seen Lincoln yet? Bear and I went to see it a couple weekends ago when it opened and I can’t recommend it enough. I know it’s already been said a million times elsewhere, but Daniel Day-Lewis does a masterful job of portraying one of the greatest men our country has ever know. And Sally Field certainly stands her own ground as Molly Todd Lincoln. I have to say that while it is not a face paced thriller, and really moves a little slowly, I think the pacing of it is so genius as it really reflects Lincoln’s disposition, even in the most critical time of his presidency. It makes his anger and determination that much more profound.
One of the things I was most struck by came near the end of the movie when they finally passed the 13th Amendment in the House of Representatives, they put the date up on the screen, January 31, 1865. Something about seeing that date really brought about a big reality check for me. This man fought so hard to do away with slavery, and then to think where our country was at 100 years later…segregation and discrimination were still an integral part of our society. Another 47 years later and now we have an African-American president. It’s amazing to me how long it can take for true change to take hold. I still don’t think we are totally there yet. And how important it is for someone with a strong conviction about an issue to stand strong and eventually truly shape our history. Lincoln stood up against nearly everyone in the country, even the Union states weren’t totally on board with doing away with slavery…but he felt so strongly about this cause he wouldn’t give in. He did whatever he could to get the 13th Amendment passed. I just am wholly in awe of the resolve and determination he had, and the vision he had to make this country great. And Day-Lewis brought that so poignantly to life for me.
So go see this movie. It’s a great history lesson for all of us. It’s also a great character lesson. Stand up for what you know to be right, even when it seems as though everyone is against you.