“American culture is identified as very individualistic, and yet there’s a tremendous social pressure to conform and to be like everybody else, and to marginalize and pathologize people who function differently in all different kinds of ways,” says Tom Ehrenberg, a therapist. “I will get parents who will say to me, ‘I just want my kid to be normal,’ and sometimes I have to say to them: ‘It’s not his job to be normal. It’s his job to be who he is.’ ”
“Learning From What Lincoln Had to Say”, Neil Genzlinger, NY Times April 14, 2014
“The inspiration for this project is the tiny Greenwood School in the small town of Putney, Vermont. The school’s students, boys ages 11-17, all face a range of learning differences that have made their personal, academic and social progress extremely challenging. Yet each year they are encouraged to practice, memorize, and recite the Gettysburg Address…
The film interweaves this contemporary story with the history, context and importance of the Address, which remains one of the most important declarations ever made on human equality.”
About the Project / Learn the Address
Credit: Lindsay Taylor Jackson/Florentime Films
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.
It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us — that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
November 19, 1863
Sunset over the national military park at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Photo © AppalachianViews/Dreamstime.
Upon the subject of education, not presuming to dictate any plan or system respecting it, I can only say that I view it as the most important subject which we as a people can be engaged in. ~ Abraham Lincoln
The people — the people — are the rightful masters of both congresses, and courts — not to overthrow the constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert it. ~ Abraham Lincoln