Below is an excerpt from a speech made by President Abraham Lincoln in 1860 when the debate on slavery was raging in our nation. Some called for abolition, some called for acceptance, some called for a middle way of tolerance. This is a portion of what Lincoln had to say about it as he ended his speech in New Haven Connecticut on March 6, 1860. If you’d like to read the speech in it’s entirety, you will find it here.
“but can we, while our votes will prevent it, allow it (slavery) to spread into the National Territories, and to overrun us here in these Free States?
If our sense of duty forbids this, then let us stand by our duty, fearlessly and effectively. Let us be diverted by none of those sophistical contrivances wherewith we are so industriously plied and belabored — contrivances such as groping for middle ground between the right and the wrong, vain as the search for a man who should be neither a living man nor a dead man — such as a policy of “don’t care” on a question about which all true men do care — such as Union appeals beseeching true Union men to yield to Disunionists, reversing the divine rule, and calling, not the sinners, but the righteous to repentance — such as invocations of Washington, imploring men to unsay what Washington did.
Neither let us be slandered from our duty by false accusations against us, nor frightened from it by menaces of destruction to the Government, nor of dungeons to ourselves. Let us have faith that right makes might; and in that faith, let us, to the end, dare to do our duty, as we understand it.”