Lincoln on the Right to Rise

“Most governments have been based, practically, on the denial of the equal rights of men. Ours began by affirming those rights. The said “some men are too ignorant and vicious to share in government.” “Possibly so,” said we, “and by our system you would always keep them ignorant and vicious. We propose to give all a chance; and we expect the weak to grow stronger, the ignorant wiser and all better and happier together.”

Notes, July 1, 1854


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