04 March 2008
Local Landmark Looking to Close...
The downtown Lincoln Museum, a little gem nestled in the heart of our fair city's crown (since 1920) is going lights out, and right on the heels of a year-long local celebration of Abraham Lincoln's 200th birthday in 2009, Lincoln Foundation officials announced yesterday that the museum will close to the public effective 30 June. And YES, I DID add a tear to the face of Lincoln seen above. Move over, "Life and Legacy"...make way for Copstaplenty Square and ALL that money THAT will bring in for decades to come (yawn...yeah, right).
I'd grab up those mementos REAL fast, people.
(no mention there yet as of today...wonder why?)
As a result, close to 80 historical items will have to find new homes. Of course no one knows where all these artifacts will wind up. (I'm thinking the four winds myself)
Citing declining attendance, the collection's dispersal to other sites will better match the Lincoln Financial Group's mission to ensure the items get maximum exposure and remain accessible to the public. This is not expected to be a negative in the downtown area redevelopment. (They probably already SOLD the property to some developer and are counting the cash.)
That's pretty much the PRINTED story.
Now for MY take on this (caution: you might learn something here).
I can sum up the Lincoln Museum's "problem" in ONE word: ENTERTAINMENT!
It's not entertaining enough for the masses of ADHDs and their pitiful 30 second attention spans. It's not SUPPOSED to be a freaking carnival sideshow -it's frigging HISTORY, you dip$hits! If ANYTHING, it's supposed to spark debate, provide insight, and invoke a sense of enlightenment.
History is to be presented in a less joyous, more somber manner, allowing one to reflect on the times and circumstances surrounding it. It's not intended to be thrill-seeker's paradise. That's what the surf at Maui, or the cliff-diving in Acapulco is for.
Spend some time at THE WALL in D.C.
Or try the Smithsonian Institution and the National History Museum there.
Stop by the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, or the Science and Technology Museum in Chicago. It's about H I S T O R Y, you morons.
It ain't DISNEYWORLD or even a NASCAR event, for God's sake!
They have a G.A.R. Museum in Philly, staffed by VOLUNTEERS, and funded with private donations. They barely make enough money to pay the freight, and yet...they have been at the Ruan House in Frankford for ages. They are in it for the HISTORY, as in "let's not forget our past when we look to the future". I like that.
But hey, maybe the Hardball guys can ride to the rescue.
Think about it.
We can have a "Theme Park" in center city, right alongside that redundant baseball stadium. We can call it "Honest Abe's Railsplittin' Ride-O-Rama", or something similar. Imagine the possibilties. You can experience what it would feel like to have someone come up from behind you (while you're enjoying a play), and put a bullet in your skull (with VR technology). Oh wait, they ALREADY do that (for REAL, too)...on the SOUTH side. It's called MURDERING ONE ANOTHER.
We can have the Mary Todd Lincoln "Crazy-Ass" waterslide, or perhaps see what it would have been like if Lincoln would have NOT signed the Emancipation Proclamation. We can give our OWN version of the Gettysburg Address, while civil war re-enactors cheer and applaud. We could even do a "Hillary Clinton smear campaign" against Stephen Douglas as we participate in the "great debate". They could come out with a Honest Abe basketball shoe (sure to make some young boys have to have them). Nike can get on board with this : "Air-Lincolns"! It's sure to be an "E"-Ticket ride, no matter how you feel about it. This could become a huge money-maker for our city, IF ONLY it was "branded" and marketed the "right" way...and that means MORE ENTERTAINMENT, people!
But I suppose that the REAL history might be LOST in all this frivolous self-indulgence. So what, we're re-writing the history books for the schoolkids already, what's one more little "change" going to matter, right? And besides, don't so many OTHER nations around the world look at America as some war-mongering bastard with it's finger in too many pies? I'd like to think that these other nations have their heads firmly up their asses (which they do).
Hey, I went to Abraham Lincoln High School in Philly, so I have some vested interest in all this. I feel this city is cutting off it's nose to spite it's face (yet again). Tell you what....with all that damn nose-cutting, this town's looking more like Michael Jackson every day. Damn shame this city doesn't have the talent to go with it (but we do have the sexual molesting down here pretty well, with all the pedophiles). Yeah, it's ALWAYS a trade-off.
I'd like to see the museum STAY. I mean we DO have an African-American History museum, and that's not going anywhere soon. I say let's be fair AND balanced about it, and keep Abe here. If it wasn't for Abe, the African-American museum probably wouldn't BE here...right, Hana?
But if there is NO way possible to keep the Abraham Lincon Museum HERE...in Fort Wayne, then by all means, I say take the entire collection and send it to D.C., or at least to Illinois (birthplace of Abe), and call it done.
Obviously, EVERY generation (up to NOW anyway) has understood the NEED for the museum, and what it stood for. But people can't be bothered with history...it's old and in the past. What's important is NOW...HERE...TODAY. Forget that what we say, think or do will shape the generations to follow, which in turn WILL BECOME the future history of our people and our nation.
We're already reaping the "benefits" from a lack of understanding history through education (by choice), and rising crime (due to stupidity). Why be burdened with lessons we could learn from history...that's just too much "work" for us, right? If this city is not able to see past it's billfold, simply CANNOT appreciate history, and in the process perhaps LEARN from it, then the destiny awaiting it will be something I'm glad none of us will be around to see.
Posted by Bob G. at 08:37