Depression Awareness in Peoria Illinois

Since we are going to have to see Abraham Blue, the removable mural that will be on the Peoria County Courthouse for the next two years, let’s start the discussion about what it means.

The Peoria Journal Star wrote – “The Lincoln portrait was created by Doug Leunig several years ago as part of a work that captured the likenesses of the famous Americans that adorn the nation’s currency. “It’s called ‘Abraham Blue’ because it’s tinted blue. That symbolizes the fact that Lincoln suffered from depression but was able to overcome that problem to be a great president,” said Doug Leunig.

I just don’t know why a man that was prone to violent rages, espoused white race superiority and endorsed the utterly inhumane treatment of Native Americans is somehow just the symbol for the Peoria County Courthouse to proudly display for the next two years? Doesn’t Peoria in 2018 have enough trouble without alienating big chunks of our citizenship?

Oh and by the way, you the tax payer are going to pay for the light bill to illuminate this mural at night – kind of a slap in the face for non-white males (don’t think that Abe considered women as being equal under the law either).

I’m not saying Lincoln did not help our African American ancestors, he did, but he didn’t think they deserved equal protection under the law, nor women and definitely not Native Americans – so why is he the one who deserves sympathy for his depression on the Peoria Courthouse?

Quite frankly I’m offended at this insensitivity – public art is great but at the expense of other citizens heritage? Hell no. This is 2018 – we deserve a symbol that represents all of us. We can do better than Abraham Blue.

Why not have our our favorite local artist Preston Jackson kick off our run of murals with a painting of Richard Pryor or something that we can relate to? Isn’t laughter the best medicine? Or perhaps just a colorful abstract-esque painting with all the colors of the rainbow?

Was anything but Doug’s art considered at all or perhaps this was Steve Tarter’s idea after all as it looks like he was the one who got the AP to take this mural story all over the country?

Is it just me that feels that this gloomy reminder of a medical prescription fail and countless deaths is just too much depression for Peoria in 2018.

Abraham Blue Depression Awareness - get used to it.

Abraham Blue Depression Awareness – get used to it.

“I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in anyway the social and political equality of the white and black races – that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied everything.”

-Fourth Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858 (The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume III, pp. 145-146.)

There are lots of websites that show that Lincoln was a conflicted individual – maybe this is why he was depressed.

Throughout the late 1850s, treaty violations by the United States and late or unfair annuity payments by Indian agents caused increasing hunger and hardship among the Dakota. Traders with the Dakota previously had demanded that the government give the annuity payments directly to them (introducing the possibility of unfair dealing between the agents and the traders to the exclusion of the Dakota). – read more here

Yeah, I didn’t know the ugly side of “honest” Abe either until I started looking….