Teaching about the Civil War

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by Tanker, Sep 5, 2003.

  1. Tanker

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    In the thread entitled, "The slavery thread to end all slavery threads", I posted the reasons given by several southern states as to why they left the union. These statements are similar in nature to the Declaration of Independence that was published in 1776. These southern declarations gave in no uncertain terms, the reasons why the southern states seceded. What comes across as clear as a bell is how important slavery was in causing the rebellion. It is also clear that the slave holding interests, those who owned the several billion dollars worth of human property, were making the decisions that lead to secession. The southern leadership was obsessed with what they thought was a serious threat to their peculiar institution. I don't see how anyone, even southern partisans such as there are in this forum, can read these documents and still say that the issue was not slavery but "state's rights". To content that the issue was not slavery after reading these documents either brands a person as not very bright or intentionally dishonest. Bear with me here. I am not calling any of you dishonest. Because I think you probably had not previously read these southern declarations. But after reading them, it will take many twists of logic to dismiss them and still say that it was only "states rights", and not slavery that was the cause of the rupture.
     
  2. KenH

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    States' rights was the primary cause of the War for Southern Independence. Slavery was factored into the mix as a symptom of fighting for States' rights. I realize you are trying, Tanker, to simplify your argument and if I was in your weak debate position, I would try to do the same thing as well and not discusss other factors.

    I still submit and as yet no apologist for the Yankees has denied that the Yankees would have invaded the Confederacy if on the first day of its existence the CSA had outlawed slavery. Therefore, if the CSA had outlawed slavery on its first day of existence and the North had still invaded the Confederate States because they had seceded, then your argument that the cause of the war was slavery goes out the window. It means that the primary argument that the war was fought over was whether or not a State could willingly secede from the USA. And that Tanker, my friend, ol' buddy, ol'pal, was a battle over States' rights.

    Now as to whether you think I am not very bright or intentionally dishonest is up to you. :cool:
     
  3. Tanker

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    KenH,

    You assume that the cause of the war has to be the same for each side. That is not the case. It seems to me, from all available evidence, that the cause of the rebellion from the southern viewpoint, was fear that the union would adversely affect slavery. But it is clear that Lincoln's reason for prosecuting the war was to prevent the south from leaving the union, and not to eliminate slavery. Certainly states rights, was not mentioned by either party as a main reason for the war, except as was incidental to maintain slavery.
     
  4. KenH

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    And why were Southerners concerned about slavery? If States' rights were not in danger of being crushed by a powerful federal government, then there would have been no reason to be concerned about a sudden elimination of slavery. Ask yourself, why was the South concerned about the elimination of slavery? Answer dear honorable friend - Because the South feared the federal government would not respect the rights of the the States to order their own affairs within the parameters granted the States by the U.S. Constitution. Remember, the 13th and 14th Amendments had not been passed yet.

    Yankees and Southerners had different viewpoints on the relationship between the States and the federal government. And the issue was settled at the point of a bayonet.

    "The Civil War wasn't just a victory of North over South; it was a victory for centralized government over the states and federalism. It destroyed the ability of the states to protect themselves against the destruction of their reserved powers. Must we all be happy about this? [Abraham] Lincoln himself -- the real Lincoln, that is -- would have deprecated the unintended results of the war. Though he sometimes resorted to dictatorial methods, he never meant to create a totalitarian state. It's tragic that slavery was intertwined with a good cause, and scandalous that those who defend that cause today should be smeared as partisans of slavery. But the verdict of history must not be left to the simple-minded and the demagogic."
    --Joseph Sobran (syndicated columnist)


    [​IMG]
     
  5. KenH

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    For historical perspective, less than 5% of Africans who became slaves were brought to these United States. Therefore, it is amazing that the places where the other 95% were taken were able to free them without resorting to war. Also, it is rather clear that slavery in the South was hardly a peculiar institution. In fact, the South(and the U.S. as a whole) was a very minor player in the whole deal.
     
  6. Tanker

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    >>>>>Also, it is rather clear that slavery in the South was hardly a peculiar institution. In fact, the South(and the U.S. as a whole) was a very minor player in the whole deal. <<<<<<<

    As I understand it, the half million slaves on the island of Haiti freed themselves in a bloody struggle, but although you seem to have forgotten that, your comment about most slaves being freed without war is probably correct. However as a powerful economic interest, there was nothing minor about slavery in the south. If corrected to present day dollars, it was a financial force worth tens of billions of dollars. It is not surprising that this enormous power held control of all the governments of the Southern states. I don't doubt that the ordinary soldier of the south fought not for slavery but for his home, but it is certainly clear beyond any dispute that his political leadership was none other than the slave holding interests. Any financial interest worth tens of billions of dollars is going to squeal when stuck, and the powerful slave holding elite thought that Lincoln was going to stick them. Oddly, they could have held onto their slaves for at least several more decades if they had not so rashly quit the union. Rather than romanticize about this powerful slave holding interest, it is important to recognize that it went down in flames and is not worth shedding any tears over. Let's not romanticize a great evil - an evil that perhaps was not representative of the south as a whole, or at least not of the whole population. And I like fried okra, catfish and hush puppies as much as anyone.
     
  7. KenH

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    Do you ever read what I write? I wrote that slavery in the U.S. was minor compared to African slaves being shipped worldwide.

    Also, just how are you coming up with this "tens of billions" of dollars figure?

    I tend to doubt that. The Yankee agitator abolitionists would have had to have been restrained by the federal government and that might have become increasingly difficult to do.
     
  8. Tanker

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    >>>>>Also, just how are you coming up with this "tens of billions" of dollars figure?<<<<<

    At the time of the Civil War, the total value of the slaves was put at about 3 or 4 billion dollars, in money of that time. What was the average wage at that time? Probably about a dollar a day. Naturally money would buy far more then than now. So if we put the value of the slaves in terms of present day dollars, you would need to multiply 3 or 4 billion by a factor of somewhere between 10 and 50. So conservatively, slaves at the time of the civil war were worth at least 30 or 40 billion of today's dollars, and more realistically, probably about 100 billion or so. It is not hard to see why the southern governments were essentially in the pockets of the slave holding interests, to the detriment of the average white man.
     
  9. Tanker

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    >>>>Do you ever read what I write? I wrote that slavery in the U.S. was minor compared to African slaves being shipped worldwide.<<<<<

    I know what you wrote. You will use anything to minimize slavery in the south.
     
  10. KenH

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    Oh, please, that is such an inane comment.

    God save the South!

    [​IMG]
     
  11. KenH

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    And you will do anything to maximize slavery as a contributing factor to the War of Northern Aggression, regardless of the facts.

    So there.
     
  12. Dr. Bob

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    Let's project some of our BB History Forum personalities back into history.

    KenH and is arguing state's rights (so he can keep his lucrative slave industry). Tanker will not listen or debate or discuss - just continually harp on and on and on and on (you've read his posts) about extreme cases of slave abuse. He's been reading Uncle Tom again.

    If and when Tank gets his view in a majority in the Congress and a President in the White House, what will be his next step? "Tank" was a weapon then, but if it had been, they'da been rolling into Arlington!

    Civil debate? Where is my cane so I can beat the abolitionist senseless on the BB floor?

    I KNOW that when radical abolitionists, led by their ungodly Unitarian/Universalist social do-gooders control the government, I am dead meat. Better leave, quick. Form my own forum. :D

    OH NO. THEY'RE GOING TO FORCE ME TO COME BACK! NO! NO! NO!
     
  13. KenH

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    Tanker,

    You have yet to deal with the logic of this thread - that even if the CSA had made slavery illegal on the first day of it's existence, the USA would have still invaded the CSA, thus rendering slavery as a non-issue as to why the Yankees invaded the South.
     
  14. Tanker

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    Dr. Bob, I notice that you are no longer arguing your more outrageous claims about the Civil War. It is good that you have retreated a bit, because I will nail you if you persist in making unsupported claims. I suspect that my knowledge of that era is at least equal to yours. A few years ago, I learned that I am a distant relative of Lincoln, and have spent about 10 years studying that time period. But my primary motive is that I support telling the truth about the past.
     
  15. dianetavegia

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    Oh Dr. Bob! I don't know nuthin' bout birthin no babies! I wanna be the Southern belle with all the beautiful clothes!

    Diane
     
  16. KenH

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    That explains a lot. Thanks for 'fessing up again.

    In the Politics Forum, we learned that you are a rich person who doesn't care about working people being taxed confiscatorily. :rolleyes:

    Now we know in this forum why you try to defend one of the worst presidents in the history of these United States. :rolleyes:
     
  17. Tanker

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    >>>>You have yet to deal with the logic of this thread - that even if the CSA had made slavery illegal on the first day of it's existence, the USA would have still invaded the CSA, thus rendering slavery as a non-issue as to why the Yankees invaded the South. <<<<<

    Well, I thought I was clear on that but I will give it another try. I agree with you that the war started because the Federal government did not want to allow the Confederacy to go out of the union. And in that sense, slavery was not the immediate cause of the conflict. But the reason that the south wanted out was because they felt that the north would not respect slavery. So in that sense, slavery was, as Lincoln said "the cause of the conflict, somehow". And there are the various declarations of the southern states that also identify slavery as the root cause. As with many safety issues, there is an apparent cause and a root cause. So to claim that the war was a war over "states rights" does not get at the truth of the matter. It is in fact a deliberate avoidance of the cause, in order to make the sympathy with the south more respectable.

    So for the north, they had a reason for their part in the war, which was not the same as the reason for the south.
     
  18. KenH

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    Thank you for finally admitting to the truth. I feel I have finally achieved something with all of these debates. [​IMG]
     
  19. Dr. Bob

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    I have simply quit beating my head against a wall against an abolitionist that defies logic and redefines truth.

    And I'm sure you know more than me. You've told me.

    In two different volumes I've read one canonized him for his work on the Gettysburg Address. A whole work on the meaning of each word and phrase.

    The other demonizes him, showing how he contracted syphillus and gave it to his wife (leading to her being crazy). Neither written by the KKK ilk, but scholarly works.

    A descendant of Linkum. Hmmmmm. Explains a lot.
     
  20. Tanker

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    >>>>>A descendant of Linkum. Hmmmmm. Explains a lot. <<<<<

    I didn't say descendant, I said relative. Lincoln's last descendant died about 15 years ago.

    I am surprised that you would stoop to spreading such slander about Lincoln, as something negative about his medical history. That is a lie that I have not heard before but it fits into your pattern of spreading dubious information whether it is correct or not. Sounds to me like something from a hate group such as the KKK. Other and more reputable sources say that Mary Lincoln was affected by hardening of the arteries, a condition that commonly causes mental problems.
     

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