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
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?