‘Lincoln’ film reveals American politics as a double edged sword
December 2, 2012 - 10:46 am | Category: Politics
Steven Spielberg’s film ‘Lincoln’ has been out in theaters since mid-November and has generally received positive reviews and a few remarks from pundits putting in their two cents worth of semi-intelligent commentary. One reviewer pointed out that ‘Lincoln’ is receiving “bipartisan” support. Even New York Times columnist, David Brooks, praises Spielberg’s biopic on Abraham Lincoln’s efforts in pushing for the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution. Brooks actually went further in his recent article when he praised the film’s depiction of politics as a noble pursuit in the overall development of social good.
In reality, there are two clear points obscured by Brooks’ simplistic perceptions of this movie focusing on an incredibly dramatic period of Abraham Lincoln’s presidency. The first point is that presidents are unique individuals who will operate the apparatus of government based upon their respective capabilities and individual character traits. The second point is that the political power the presidents possess while empowered by the office can be utilized for the good or the opposite of good; or more specifically, such power can be used for destructive ends. It is not that government, as an entity under its own power, would have the capacity to create societal good or to perpetrate harm upon the people. People wield the power for good or harm based upon who they are.Article Source