So. Here was the article in USAToday: Blind to history in Richmond http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/editorials/2010-04-08-editorial08_ST2_N.htm
Suffice it to say when the governor of Virginia declared April to be confederacy history month (which I don’t mind personally) he never mentioned slavery as an issue or a discussion point with regard to the confederacy and the civil war.
Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm …. nope … not once.
Okay. That I do have an issue with. But. Anyway.
It’s the comments below the article that gave me pause.
Come on folks. if we’re going to teach our children about America’s worst yet finest hour, then let’s teach it correctly. Slavery in the south was but a secondary cause of the civil war. states rights were the first and foremost cause of the War of Northern Aggression.
First and foremost, so many of you actually don’t know history and are re-writing it here. The fact is that the civil war WASN’T about slavery! Yes, we all know that Lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation essentially ending slavery. And we know that the south certainly was in FAVOR of slavery. But, again, that is not why the confederate states succeeded, nor was that why the civil war was fought.
Anyone with even a basic knowledge of US History knows that the Civil War was not about slavery. That was only a side issue.
OK. Yikes. (even beyond the fact the commenter suggested “seceded” should be spelled “succeeded”)
OK. Double yikes then.
Giving the benefit of the doubt … maybe this is the chicken and egg discussion (which comes first).
In my wacky world it is called stimulus – response. In this case the stimulus is slavery.
I don’t really care what response you select (the war, states’ rights, sustaining southern economy, etc) the stimulus seems to be slavery. Maybe someone can argue that if slavery wasn’t around that eventually states would have eventually seceded at some point over some other state power struggle.
And maybe someone can get their head out of their ass and just stop this whole discussion.
The civil war was about slavery. Period.
Everything else was simply a result of it.
If someone wanted to argue that the war was fought because the government couldn’t align on finding a solution to slavery I may tag along for that discussion. For in the end (assuming you believe America has some moral compass) if someone had said to slave owners “here is how we can abolish slavery and maintain the current economy” I would hope that everyone would have sat down at the table and say “let’s do it.”
But arguing the civil war wasn’t about slavery seems downright silly <if not inane> to me. For if you believe it is about state’s rights, and therefore each state had the right to elect to have slaves versus not have slaves … or that owning a person was “right” … well … yikes again.
Our founding fathers knew slavery was wrong. It is fiction but if you want an easy read and a nice background on the discussion surrounding slavery and our constitution pick up The Lost Constitution by William Martin. Our constitution was written struggling with this issue. And they were pretty smart people. The civil war was the ultimate culmination of that struggle.
State rights as the issue of the civil war. It’s sad to see people write that. Very very sad.
It suggests the moral compass of the country doesn’t exist. And that is just plain wrong <and not truth>.
Owning another human being is wrong. C’mon people. We know that.
If we want to fight a war over state’s rights go ahead and be that stupid and do it.
But ultimately the civil war was a morality war. And while soldiers may have actually fought for any variety of reasons and were heroes in their own right (confederate or union) our government failed us in that they couldn’t offer a viable economic solution to the moral dilemma.
And in the end we fought a war because we were not united in an effort to right that wrong.
But. Suffice it to say. Reading comments under some articles scares me. Because if that commenter is influencing kids … we are in a world of hurt.