Lincoln e Direitos Naturais II

O Espirito Santo:está de folga II: "Lincoln fala, de vez em quando, em “divindade”, “deus”. Mas nunca fala no deus cristão ou mesmo em Jesus Cristo. Aquele deus é uma referência ética para o direito natural, e não uma referência à cultura cristã." Henrique Raposo (who else?)

Hmm, Direitos Naturais sem Cristianismo? Mais, sem Catolicismo? Não em parece (nem a mim nem a ninguém... de onde sairam os Direitos Naturais? De Lincoln? De Strauss?). E Lincoln, um homem de fé? Não em parece a mim nem a ninguém. Os seus discursos falam muito de Deus e cita a Bíblia mas não se conhece que tenha entrado numa Igreja como cristão. É como o abolicionismo. Nunca o foi. Foi quando deu jeito. Falar em Deus dá jeito.

Mas outros parecem ver uma intenção. Ele não era Cristão porque era muito mais do que isso. Lá está. Uma Divindade. Mas Lincoln presta-se à divinização - a entidade hoje etérea perfeita para uma religião civil, do género que se materializa nos actos simbólicos do Estado. Este quer-se secularizado mas pelo caminho arranja as suas divindades e sagrado evocadas nas suas cerimónias e respectivos rituais, onde o protocolo faz de teólogo.

Mas vamos a Mencken:

"But despite all the vast mass of Lincolniana and the constant discussion of old Abe in other ways, even so elemental a problem as that of his religious ideas—surely an important matter in any competent biography—is yet but half solved. Was he a Christian? Did he believe in the Divinity of Jesus? I am left in doubt. He was very polite about it, and very cautious, as befitted a politician in need of Christian votes, but how much genuine conviction was in that politeness? And if his occasional references to Jesus were thus open to question, what of his rather vague avowals of belief in a personal God and in the immortality of the soul? Herndon and some of his other early friends always maintained that he was an atheist, but the Rev. Willian E. Barton, one of the best of later Lincolnologists, argues that this atheism was simply disbelief in the idiotic Methodist and Baptist dogmas of his time—that nine Christian churches out of ten, if he were live today, would admit him to their high privileges and prerogatives without anything worse than a few warning coughs. As for me, I still wonder. (...)

Even his handling of the slavery question was that of a politician, not that of a messiah. Nothing alarmed him more than the suspicion that he was an Abolitionist, and Barton tells of an occasion when he actually fled town to avoid meeting the issue squarely. An Abolitionist would have published the Emancipation Proclamation the day after the first battle of Bull Run. But Lincoln waited until the time was more favorable—until Lee had been hurled out of Pennsylvania, and more important still, until the political currents were safely funning his way. Even so, he freed the slaves in only a part of the country: all the rest continued to clank their chains until he himself was an angel in Heaven.(...)

But let us not forget that it is poetry, not logic; beauty, not sense. Think of the argument in it. Put it into the cold words of everyday. The doctrine is simply this: that the Union soldiers who died at Gettysburg sacrificed their lives to the cause of self-determination—"that government of the people, by the people, for the people," should not perish from the earth. It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in that battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves. What was the practical effect of the battle of Gettysburg? What else than the destruction of the old sovereignty of the States, i.e., of the people of the States? The Confederates went into battle free; they came out with their freedom subject to the supervision and veto of the rest of the country—and for nearly twenty years that veto was so effective that they enjoyed scarcely more liberty, in the political sense, than so many convicts in the penitentiary."

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