Posts Tagged ‘Springfield’

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I took a trip down through corn and big sky to the Illinois state capitol, Springfield.

Springfield was originally named Calhoun after Secretory of War, John C. Calhoun from South Carolina.  About 10 years later, when Calhoun became the 7th Vice President under John Quincy Adams, and then again under Andrew Jackson, and maybe around the time that Calhoun became a staunch advocate of secession, the fact that he called slavery a “positive good” instead of a “necessary evil,” and that he spoke outright in favor of nullification, a state’s ability to void any federal law they found not to their liking, the citizens of Calhoun found their town’s namesake to be not to their liking, and renamed their town Springfield.

That was about the time this guy got here, where he would stay for almost two decades.

It was here he practiced law after having taught it to himself.  It was here he put his feet up on November 6th, 1860, his kids spilling ink on his law office walls, that he learned that he was elected President of the United States.

Lincoln freed the slaves, set a new direction for the country approaching its centennial, and kept these United States united, all while being under constant attack from his wealth of enemies, watching his sons die, as well as nearly 600,000 Americans, about 4% of the population at the time, yet he had the drive and vision to see a higher cause.

I’m totally in the bag for good ol’ Abe… But more on that later.

But check this out…

(Not my picture...)

I didn't take this one...

A face divided…

Cover up the right side of his face (his right) and you see happy Lincoln.  That man knew how to laugh, how to tell stories.

Now cover up the left side of his face (his left) and see sad Lincoln.  That men felt each one of those 600,000 deaths…

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Here in France, the kids are on vacation for the next two weeks because why the hell not?  It’s February!  Let’s stop going to school!  It will be a nice contrast to the three weeks they took off in December and January, and the two weeks they will take off in April.  That all being said, I am accompanying three chillins to the America of Americas here in France, the emporium of American Glory, I am going to EURO Disney .  Yes, soon I will feel at home on Main Street U.S.A. where the rocks play music though the cotton candy will be called “barbe à papa” which translates to “papa’s beard” which is a far weirder image to eat than simply a candy version of the cotton plant.  

Most laking to me, however, will be The Hall of Presidents from Disney World in Orlando.  In Orlando, The Hall of Presidents features animatronic figures of every past and current president. Each of the forty-four U.S. presidents is called by name where they wave or nod or blink assertively and all other presidents turn to acknowledge their fellow office holders.  The show ends first, with the current president giving an excerpt from a famous speech and then… well… First I’ll say that I was there a little over a year ago and  the excerpt used for W. was a selection from an always inspirational “No Child Left Behind” speech.   Yet after the current president, Abe Lincoln stands and delivers a speech, one that has been revised from the original (C’mon.  You seroiusly think you know better than Lincoln?  You can’t revise that shit.).  The audio-animatronic Abe blinks, gestures, forms syllables with his mouth and refers to a sheet of paper to remind him of his next line. This is yet another historical inaccuracy as Abraham Lincoln was a God, and Gods needn’t refer to notes.

And on that note, who knows what speech of Obama’s is being used o’er in Orlando?  I’d be curious to know.  What are your guys’ favorites?  I should also note that all over France now are “Learn English with Obama” computer programs.  They teach English through Obama speeches and using only his voice.  I just like that we went from W. to the model of English rhetoric.

And make sure to check out Obama’s speech  in Springfield, Illinois at a banquet for Lincoln’s bicentennial.

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