So you can read my books

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


Abraham Lincoln delivered his Gettysburg Address on this day in 1863.

As he was following a two-hour oration by Edward Everett, Lincoln kept it short.

Afterwards, even Everett acknowledged that he could not "come as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes,"

but the newspapers of the day still managed to play politics.

Republican papers reported hearing a speech that had "the charm and power of the very highest eloquence" (Providence Journal),

that "will live among the annals of man" (Chicago Tribune).

 Democratic papers wished to "pass over the silly remarks of the President" (Harrisburg Patriot and Union),

for "the cheeks of every American must tingle with shame as he reads the silly, flat, and dishwatery utterances" (Chicago Times).


On May 29, 1856 in Bloomington, Illinois, Lincoln so mesmerized reporters that all of them failed to write down the words that so moved them. 

It is thought that newspapers with opposing ideals refused to print it due to its anti-slavery sentiments.

With just a few sentences, Lincoln in the Gettysburg Address summed up American history and democratic ideals as well as giving a new motive for keeping up the fight,

so that those who fell at Gettysburg “will not have died in vain."

Lincoln’s speech was years ahead of its time, which is why it still resonates today, when audiences quickly tire or overlong oratories.

Today’s speeches are more likely to resemble Lincoln’s. The rise of social media has changed the way they are written and digested.

What we think will sometimes, if not all the time, influence how we view new information.

That is why we sometimes are skeptical when foreign ideas invade our minds.

Our thinking or current perception of things or an idea filters the new perception or information so that it fits the perception that our mind is willing to retain.

What do you think?

Do people truly read
what you write
who they are?


  1. Indoctrination. Optical illusions. I'm not sure I agree with some of the contents.

    A person raised in a home where one belief is traditional, can still grow up with different beliefs of their own.

    It may depend on the person, their education, and who they associate with. Interesting question, Roland.

  2. D.G.:
    Nor do I. But I wanted to raise some questions. Thanks for visiting. :-)

  3. Hi Roland - sadly people don't think very much, there's too much selfishness and lack of understanding ..

    I don't fully understand or understand sometimes what I'm reading - especially the political aspects ... or world comments ...

    I'm not too happy about being run (governed) by text speak ... it's too glib, while Lincoln, Churchill and other great orators were able to be amazingly wise and concise.

    I'm sure people don't fully read what I write ... I can read that sometimes in the comments ... yet I'm not writing great philosophies or treaties - just putting some ideas across ... some simple to grasp, others perhaps not so - as they're on British culture .. and our perspectives are different if we're from different continents.

    If only we could be one nation (one world) with one set of ideals .. with no sides - we'd all be better off ... we need discourse, but not disagreement and downright intransigience ... and always blaming others ..

    Cheers Hilary

  4. I think the delivery and impact of a well-made speech is what politicians focus on these days instead of sincere and intelligent content. Makes for great advertising slogans, not so much for a admirable system of government.

    Moody Writing

  5. Hilary:
    You're right I am afraid: we have become the people of the Sound Bite. People want to escape lives of dreariness in entertainment that wisks them away from the hurtful to a time of just flowing with the sensations.

    I don't mind the different sides of situations -- just that people cannot seem to resolve differences decently and peacefully. Sigh. Great, insightful comment.

    You're right: you can't run a country by slogan. And things have gotten to such a state by mismanagement, it is a knot beyond untying. Sigh.

  6. The same passage can be read by two people and each will interpret it a little differently. We filter everything through our past experiences and knowledge, and no two people experience the same life.
    Lincoln was short and to the point - I like that!