Honest Abe

Elect Abraham Lincoln to the Illinois House of Representatives

Philosophy


  • All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.
  • Slavery
    • As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy.
    • Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.
    • Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.
    • You cannot build character and courage by taking away a man's initiative and independence.

  • Philosophy
    • Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.
    • Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.
    • The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend.
    • These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people.
    • Towering genius disdains a beaten path. It seeks regions hitherto unexplored.
    • We should be too big to take offense and too noble to give it.
    • When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion.
    • When you have got an elephant by the hind legs and he is trying to run away, it's best to let him run.

  • General
    • Common looking people are the best in the world: that is the reason the Lord makes so many of them.
    • God must love the common man, he made so many of them.

  • Character
    • Every man is said to have his peculiar ambition. Whether it be true or not, I can say for one that I have no other so great as that of being truly esteemed of my fellow men, by rendering myself worthy of their esteem.
    • I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, and stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong.
    • I do the very best I know how - the very best I can; and I mean to keep on doing so until the end.

  • Political
    • Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed.
    • Tact is the ability to describe others as they see themselves.
    • The ballot is stronger than the bullet.
    • The people will save their government, if the government itself will allow them.
    • The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.
    • What kills a skunk is the publicity it gives itself.
    • With public sentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed.

  • Statesmanship
    • When I am getting ready to reason with a man, I spend one-third of my time thinking about myself and what I am going to say and two-thirds about him and what he is going to say.