Skip to comments.War Between the States about slavery? No way
Posted on 04/25/2011 9:31:58 AM PDT by Iron Munro
I am responding to a column by Leonard Pitts Jr., a noted black columnist for The Miami Herald, entitled, "The Civil War was about slavery, nothing more" (Other Views, April 15).
I found this article to be very misleading and grossly riddled with distortions of the real causes of the War Between the States. I find it so amusing that such an educated person would not know the facts.
I am a proud native of South Carolina. I have spent my entire life in what was once the Confederate States of America. I am currently associated with Southern Heritage causes, including the Sons of Confederate Veterans in Tampa.
It's been 150 years since brave, patriotic Southerners drove the imperialist Yankee army from Fort Sumter, S.C. It also marked the beginning of the Confederates' fight to expel this foreign army from the entire Southern homeland.
After all these years, there still exists national historical ignorance and lies about this war. The War Between the States was about states' rights not about slavery.
Remember, the original colonies voluntarily joined the union and never gave up their individual sovereignty. These independent states always retained their right to manage their domestic affairs and to leave this voluntary association at any time.
This voluntary union was for limited reasons such as national defense from the foreign powers, one language, interstate commerce, disputes between the sovereign states and matters of foreign affairs.
When the Southern states tried to leave this union, the Northerners had to put a stop to this. The slavery issue was masterly inserted into the movement of Yankee aggression.
We are a union of independent and sovereign states free to determine our own destiny. This sovereignty is meant to be free of Yankee federal domination and control. This should still be in principle and practice today as it was before the first cannon shots at Fort Sumter.
Slavery of any people is wicked and morally wrong. Domination of one people over another is just as evil and morally wrong.
The facts are that throughout history, just about every race of people has been slaves to another people. Slavery has always been a failed institution and a dark mark in history. One-hundred years before the first slave made it to the auction blocks in Virginia, African kings were running a booming enterprise of selling their own people into slavery. It was also customary that defeated people became slaves.
Slavery as an institution worldwide was coming to an end before the War Between the States. Slavery in America would probably have come to an end within 50 years.
The great eternal lie that the war was to "free the slaves" is still being propagandized today by modern spin-makers, schools and even scholars. But the facts are plain and quite evident if you were to take off your Yankee sunglasses.
The Army of the Potomac invaded the South to capture, control and plunder the prosperity of Southern economic resources and its industries. This army also wanted to put a final nail in the coffin of states' rights.
If, and I say this with a big if , the War Between the States was to free the slaves, please answer these simple questions:
Why didn't President Lincoln issue a proclamation on day one of his presidency to free the slaves? Why did he wait so many years later to issue his proclamation? Why was slavery still legal in the Northern states? Before 1864, how many elected members of the imperialist Yankee Congress introduced legislation to outlaw slavery anywhere in America?
The slaves were freed and only in territories in rebellion against the North because the Army of the Potomac was not winning the war and Lincoln was fearful of foreign nations recognizing the Confederacy.
The Northern states needed a war to fuel their economy and stop the pending recession. The North needed rebellion in the South to cause havoc in the Confederate states. The North wanted the hard foreign currency being generated by Southern trade.
I hope this year not only marks the celebration of the brave actions of Southerners to evict the Northern Army at Fort Sumter but leads to the truthful revision of history about the war. Future generations should know the truth.
Al Mccray is a Tampa businessman and managing editor of TampaNewsAndTalk.com
What you think is silly is something would willing die for, just as my Southern ancestors did 150 years ago. You are an amazing statist tool, a real federal boot licker. Not only do you propose bending over for FedGov, but you prefer we place one hand on each check and pull it open. You may condone squealing like a pig for FedGov, but not me.
Major Innes Randolph, C.S.A..
GOOD OL' REBEL SOLDIER listen
Oh, I'm a good old rebel Now thats just what I am And for this yankee nation I do no give a damn. I'm glad I fit (fought) against 'er (her) I only wish we'd won I ain't asked any pardon For anything I've done. I hates the Yankee nation And eveything they do I hates the declaration Of independence too. I hates the glorious union 'Tis dripping with our blood I hates the striped banner And fit (fought) it all I could. I rode with Robert E. Lee For three years there about Got wounded in four places And I starved at Pint (Point) Lookout. I coutch (caught) the roomatism (rheumatism) Campin' in the snow But I killed a chance of Yankees And I'd like to kill some mo'. (more.) Three hundred thousand Yankees Is stiff in southern dust We got three hundred thousand Before they conquered us. They died of southern fever And southern steel and shot I wish they was three million Instead of what we got. I can't take up my musket And fight 'em down no mo' (more) But I ain't a-goin' to love 'em (them) Now that is serten sho. (certain sure.) And I don't want no pardon For what I was and am I won't be reconstructed And I do not give a damn. Oh, I'm a good old rebel Now that's just what I am And for this Yankee nation I do no give a damn. I'm glad I fought against 'er (her) I only wish we'd won I ain't asked any pardon For anything I've done. I ain't asked any pardon For anything I've done...
You'd have to put your boots on and stand up first... something you new age secessionist poseurs never seem to get around to.
When will you little bitches stand and fight?
I have that song in a number of my music books and enjoy playing it every now and then. I’m thinking about writing a follow-up called: “ I Am A Good Old Norske.”
So when are you leaving that hellhole that is the state of Virginia where you are so miserably oppressed? And where are you going?
More fitting: for you: “I Am A Good Old Nazi, that is what I am, for this silly republic I do not give damn.
Remember Godwin’s law or corollary: the first person use Nazi terminology loses the argument. Or has no argument in the first place. And again, when are you leaving Virginia to escape this awful country that is the U.S.A.?
Fight who, truckstop?
You and your union thug buddies? Not possible. All you union thug boys do is pick on women and children. I suspect that if you saw some Southern men approaching you that would run faster than your forefathers did when they saw Southerners running towards them and heard the Rebel Yell.
How about the federal government? You want us to fight them? Facts are, we are fighting them. We're the last section of the country that is fighting to remain free as opposed to you yankee pansies that walk arm in arm with the big spending libs.
Now why don't you go back to the bowling alley, have a couple of beers, bowl a couple of frames and talk tough with your union thug buddies and let us adults have a conversation here.
Your question shows your complete ignorance to what a republic is and should be. I want Virginia to leave the Union (again), it is FedGov that needs to go. Did you order you Lincoln blow up doll yet? It is Coven standard issue, silly one. mac_truck can show you how to inflate it.
Just ordered it. I'll send you a picture.
Bravely said! Bravely said!
(But rather amusing, coming from someone who would immediately cover himself in mustard, if five justices declared he was a ham sandwich... ;>)
Your "contention" was not commonly held when the Constitution was being ratified. In fact, the first nine ratifying States seceded from a supposedly "perpetual" union formed under the terms of the Articles of Confederation, and several States specifically reserved the right to withdraw from the new union, when they ratified the Constitution. One respected legal reference of the time noted:
The federal government then, appears to be the organ through which the united republics communicate with foreign nations, and with each other. Their submission to it's operation is voluntary: it's councils, it's engagements, it's authority are theirs, modified, and united. It's sovereignty is an emanation from theirs, not a flame by which they have been consumed, nor a vortex in which they are swallowed up. Each [State] is still a perfect state, still sovereign, still independent, and still capable, should the occasion require, to resume the exercise of it's functions, as such, in the most unlimited extent.
- St. George Tucker, Blackstone's Commentaries, 1803
...If a faction should attempt to subvert the government of a state for the purpose of destroying its republican form, the paternal power of the Union could thus be called forth to subdue it.
Yet it is not to be understood, that its interposition would be justifiable, if the people of a state should determine to retire from the Union, whether they adopted another or retained the same form of government, or if they should, with the, express intention of seceding, expunge the representative system from their code, and thereby incapacitate themselves from concurring according to the mode now prescribed, in the choice of certain public officers of the United States.
The principle of representation, although certainly the wisest and best, is not essential to the being of a republic, but to continue a member of the Union, it must be preserved, and therefore the guarantee must be so construed. It depends on the state itself to retain or abolish the principle of representation, because it depends on [the State] itself whether it will continue a member of the Union. To deny this right would be inconsistent with the principle on which all our political systems are founded, which is, that the people have in all cases, a right to determine how they will be governed.
This right must be considered as an ingredient in the original composition of the general government, which, though not expressed, was mutually understood, and the doctrine heretofore presented to the reader in regard to the indefeasible nature of personal allegiance, is so far qualified in respect to allegiance to the United States. It was observed, that it was competent for a state to make a compact with its citizens, that the reciprocal obligations of protection and allegiance might cease on certain events; and it was further observed, that allegiance would necessarily cease on the dissolution of the society to which it was due.
The states, then, may wholly withdraw from the Union...
- William Rawle, A View of the Constitution of the United States, 1829
In short, it is your historical revisionist "contention" that is "rather silly"...
You, like every other sovereignist, refuse to answer one quesiton I’ve posed every time these discussions arise: if all states have equal rights, do states created by the federal government after the original thirteen colonies have the right to secede from the country that created them? In short is my state of Wisconsin, made a state in 1848, sovereign and does it have the right to secede?
Yes, next question.
Actually, you're wrong. I've never refused to answer that question, whether posed by you or any other historical revisionist.
...if all states have equal rights, do states created by the federal government after the original thirteen colonies have the right to secede from the country that created them? In short is my state of Wisconsin, made a state in 1848, sovereign and does it have the right to secede?
Let's see what the State of Wisconsin had to say:
Resolved, That the [federal] government, formed by the Constitution of the United States was not the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; but that, as in all other cases of compact among parties having no common judge, each [State as a] party has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress.
-Wisconsin State Legislature, March 19, 1859 [General Laws of Wisconsin, 1859, 247, 248.]
Perhaps you recognize the language (or perhaps not). In any case, the State of Wisconsin claimed the right to "judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress" - which quite obviously did not exclude the right of secession. "In short," my answer is yes - in 1859, Wisconsin had the right to secede.
Now, perhaps you would like to provide some historical documentation supporting your "contention" - that the States ratifying the new Constitution intended to prohibit "states leaving the union under any pretext."
Or, perhaps not...
Re: Wisconsin State Legislature, March 19, 1859 [General Laws of Wisconsin, 1859, 247, 248.]
“So what? You’re just a Lost Causer!” :)
Hoping the federal government will follow the Constitution (or even its own regulations) IS kind of a lost cause these days, isn't it?
(But, in my opinion, still worth pursuing... ;>)
Yeah, I guess the U.S. didn’t really own the territories that eventually became the states of Wisconsin, Iowa, and the others.
What part of the phrase “more perfect union” don’t you understand? When the states ratified the consitution and broke up the confederation, they consigned themselves to a union. Nowhere in the federal constitution is the right to secession expressed. A number of presidents, including James Madison and Andrew Jackson, said no right to secession exists.
Yeah, that’s right, the EU states and charter is exactly the same as the U.S. states and constitution. Try a different model please. And tell me again why the “right” to secession is not explicitly mentioned in the U.S. constitution.
When the individual states gave up on the articles of confederation and signed onto the constitution and the UNION!!!!, they gave up the right of secession. George Washington in his farewell address spoke about the primacy of the union over individual states. When Americans today worry about the future of the country, they don’t mean their individual states. They mean The UNITED !!! States of America. Why don’t you try to organize a secessionist movement in Pennsylvania, and see how popular it is?
The driftless2 History of the U.S.:
The same men who fought for their right to secede from Britain and declared it in their Declaration, upon realizing that goal created a new system that oppressed its members into subservience and removed the same right they bled for just years prior.
Perfectly logical, and now that we’ve introduced CAPS, simply indisputable.
Before you play the broken record again, answer this...
Pete and Repeat were in a boat. Pete fell off. Who was left?
d2: What part of the phrase more perfect union dont you understand? When the states ratified the consitution and broke up the [supposedly perpetual union formed under the Articles of] confederation, they consigned themselves to a union.
So - no documentation to support your "contention," except three out-of-context words from the Constitution's preamble? (Others have encountered similar difficulties before you - as James Ostrowski observed, "If one lacks support for one's view in the text of the constitution, one seeks it in the preamble."... ;>) You are suggesting that a "more perfect union" must of necessity prohibit "states leaving the union under any pretext." My understanding of the term "more perfect union" is quite the opposite.
But it's interesting that you should mention 'breaking up the confederation' - the compact under which that union was formed claimed to be "perpetual," and required the unanimous consent of the member States to any alteration in its terms. Nevertheless, the first nine States to ratify the Constitution seceded from that supposedly "perpetual union," and established a new union under a compact that nowhere claimed to be "perpetual."
d2: Nowhere in the federal constitution is the right to secession expressed.
And nowhere in the federal Constitution is State secession prohibited. (Sorry, but I can't resist: 'What part of the Tenth Amendment dont you understand?' ;>) As the man who should be our Chief Justice once observed:
...[W]here the Constitution is silent, it raises no bar to action by the States or the people [of the individual States]...
In each State, the remainder of the people's powers-- "[t]he powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States," Amdt.10--are either delegated to the state government or retained by the people. The Federal Constitution does not specify which of these two possibilities obtains; it is up to the various state constitutions to declare which powers the people of each State have delegated to their state government. As far as the Federal Constitution is concerned, then, the States can exercise all powers that the Constitution does not withhold from them. The Federal Government and the States thus face different default rules: where the Constitution is silent about the exercise of a particular power--that is, where the Constitution does not speak either expressly or by necessary implication--the Federal Government lacks that power and the States enjoy it.
These basic principles are enshrined in the Tenth Amendment, which declares that all powers neither delegated to the Federal Government nor prohibited to the States "are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." With this careful last phrase, the Amendment avoids taking any position on the division of power between the state governments and the people of the States: it is up to the people of each State to determine which "reserved" powers their state government may exercise. But the Amendment does make clear that powers reside at the state level except where the Constitution removes them from that level. All powers that the Constitution neither delegates to the Federal Government nor prohibits to the States are controlled by the people of each State.
- Justice Clarence Thomas, U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton [minority opinion], 1995
The antebellum Constitution was silent with regard to State secession - it therefore raised no bar to such action by the States or their people.
d2: A number of presidents, including James Madison and Andrew Jackson, said no right to secession exists.
Care to post any documentation that does not date from decades after ratification? Of course not.
In short, the current union was founded on secession from a self-styled "perpetual union;" the Constitution (as ratified) nowhere prohibited State secession; several of the ratifying States specifically reserved the right of secession when they acceded to the current union; legal references of the era recognized the possibility of secession; and "a number of presidents," including James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, stated in their public writings that it was up to the individual States, as parties to the compact, to decide with regard to secession (please see Mr. Jefferson's Kentucky Resolutions, and Mr. Madison's Virginia Resolutions and Report on the Virginia Resolutions).
Because you seem to prefer sources that date from the period several decades AFTER ratification, allow me to close with the following:
Whilst the General Assembly [of the State of Virginia] thus declares the rights retained by the States, rights which they have never yielded, and which this State will never voluntarily yield, they do not mean to raise the banner of disaffection, or of separation from their sister States, co-parties with themselves to this compact. They know and value too highly the blessings of their Union as to foreign nations and questions arising among themselves, to consider every infraction as to be met by actual resistance. They respect too affectionately the opinions of those possessing the same rights under the same instrument, to make every difference of construction a ground of immediate rupture. They would, indeed, consider such a rupture as among the greatest calamities which could befall them; but not the greatest. There is yet one greater, submission to a [federal] government of unlimited powers.
- Thomas Jefferson, Declaration and Protest on the Principles of the Constitution of the United States of America and on the Violations of Them [by the Federal Government], 1825
(Strange that our public schools never mention Thomas Jefferson's 2nd Declaration... ;>)
Wow, take a couple of days off and the trollish ones go nuts! I’m gratified that they show so much concern for my well-being however ;-)
Yeah, those southern states sure were oppressed. The fact is Lincoln, other than trying to keep it from being spread to non-slave states, wasn’t going to do anything about slavery because he felt he constitutionally couldn’t. The southern states seceded/rebelled because they saw slavery coming to end, and they didn’t want to end it. If you want to call that being oppressed go ahead. You can argue all you want pal, but secession was a ridiculous idea then as it is now. You probably won’t get anybody in the state of Pennsylvania to agree with you, but why don’t you try.
Constitutionally speaking, he couldn't. How was he going to try to keep it from spreading? You are aware that efforts in halting the spread of slave labor had little to do with humanitarian reasons, correct?
The southern states seceded/rebelled because they saw slavery coming to end, and they didnt want to end it.
This conflicts with your statement above. How was it going to end? Who was going to end it?
They thought they could forestall it by secession. They saw it ending in a U.S. which they were part of. So they thought they would try to creat a separate country and keep it going for as long as possible.
How was it going to end? Who was going to end it?
The course of history. Slavery would most likely be gone from all states by the end of the nineteeth century. Slavery was something the south had to get over. A number of prominent southern soldiers, including Robert E. Lee and Patrick Cleburne, said as much during the war.
Then why did Lincoln's stated reason for waging war change? His pretext for beginning the war was to "save the Union" and voila, at Gettysburg he decided it was a war to end slavery.
Lincoln’s reasons were clear and unwavering - he sought to hold the union together. The notion that he “waged war to free the slaves” is one attributed to him, not by him.
From the Gettysburg Address:
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.
...that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom...
What was he talking about?
It was an acknowledgment of the sacrifice of soldiers and a reaffirmation of the founding principles of our country.
What was he talking about? Freedom for whom?
What you apparently fail to read from your own source is that every one of those, after the initial 13 and with the exception of Texas and, to a lesser extent, California passed through the status of US territory. In the case of California, arguments between slave and free interests and the Wilmot Proviso delayed the organization of the Mexican Cession into a formal territory, and as part of the Compromise of 1850 California was admitted as a state.The other exceptions are Maine and West Virginia, which were broken off from other existing states.
The fact is that the people of a territory can't simply form themselves into a state. The people of a territory tell Congress that they want to be admitted as a state and Congress passes an Enabling Act, giving the people of that territory the authority to form a state. And that permission is not automatic. Colorado started asking for admission in 1864, but it wasn't until 1876 that they were admitted.
You are aware, aren't you, that the Emancipation Proclamation was nearly a year before the Gettysburg Address, aren't you?
Do you disagree that ending slavery was the right thing to do?
I am. I'm also aware that it was a war measure which didn't free any slaves.
Do you disagree that ending slavery was the right thing to do?
You didn't answer my question: Freedom for whom?
“Not only do you propose bending over for FedGov”
You’re not funny, by the way.
“I am. I’m also aware that it was a war measure which didn’t free any slaves.”
It freed about 4 million slaves, silly.
You're wrong. About 20,000, in US controlled areas of North Carolina and on the Sea Islands of South Carolina were immediately affected. And of course as the war went on, millions more were freed under its terms.
You didn't answer my question: Freedom for whom?
Everyone, including slaves. What's your point?
Perpetuating historical revision.
Read the thoughts of Lincoln's contemporaries on this, including the legal aspects of it.
Everyone, including slaves. What's your point?
Follow the conversation.
“Perpetuating historical revision.”
Revision? Hop in your time machine, go back to 1865, ask them whoever’s around what “henceforward shall be free” means.
“Read the thoughts of Lincoln’s contemporaries on this, including the legal aspects of it.”
Oh, give it up. You know what happened. Eventually the Confederacy was conquered, and no matter what else happened the slaves in that territory would never have been delivered back to bondage. The 13th amendment made the point moot, but the EP nonetheless provided for freedom “henceforward,” i.e. forever.