Slavery was and is a horrible thing. I don't think that anyone here has defended the inexcusable institution. However, if you take the time to study history the idea that "North = Good and South = Wrong" is misleading and incorrect. As I mentioned earlier, the North ran the slave trade from Africa. The North controlled shipping and the Northern shipping industry controlled the slave trade from Africa. That's fact. I am not absolving the South of guilt. I am, however, saying that the North was also responsible for slavery. The North participated in slavery. People in New York City became wealthy from the trading of slaves and many were not supportive of ending slavery. When did New Jersey abolish slavery? Look it up.
IF the South fought only for slavery, as you posit, then you might have a valid argument, but if you will read about the history of the conflict you will see that slavery was an issue, but not THE issue for the war.
"When Faith preaches Hate, Blessed are the Doubters." - Amin Maalouf
He was talking about the importance of a federal government and how without it the states would be jealous of each other. They needed some sort of conflict middle man to cool conflicts so they didn't arise to be more. You seeing things that aren't there is your problem, not mine.No, your interpretation is not accurate. Hamilton was clear about the importance of a strong central govenment and the importance of no dissension or hostility between the states in order to support the central government.
Last edited by Henrin; 06-11-11 at 10:58 PM.
An example of what I'm talking about: Company B, 46th Mississippi Infantry went to war with 112 soldiers in ranks. In '65, when it surrendered at Mobile, there were 8 men left in the company.
Some interesting arguments here, but I must rebut. The fundamental issue of the war was slavery. If one wants to call it "state's rights", the primary right was the existence of slavery. The South saw a creep towards abolition, with Northern states imposing their will on Southern states via the Federal Government.
The Emancipation Proclamation was more to rejuvenate the cause of the War, and not so much with an expectation of causing southern blacks to revolt. The victory at Antietam provided Lincoln with the foundation to make abolition the issue for the North, especially moving into the upcoming elections against the not-so-abolitionist Democrats. He also needed a Constitutional foundation, and if one notes, the slaves were only "emancipated" in the rebellion states. Not in such as Maryland, for instance. There was no legal basis upon which the Federal Government could free them in Northern States.
Prior to the War, there had been serious considerations in the Federal Government to come up with a formula to essentially "buy out slavery", that is to pass laws that phased it out state-by-state and to compensate the owners monetarily. This is likely what would have happened had there been no war. In the end, the cost would have been exponentially less than the War.
Lincoln and the rest of his generals thought that the War would be over in a month or two. It was a huge miscalculation. One for which Lincoln gets too much of a pass IMMHO.
Having the benefit of distance and history, I would say neither side was 'right'. The road that led to the civil war was created over economics. It became a pissing contest. It had little if anything to do with slavery as a matter of freedom for the slaves. The actions of the North AND the South created an environment where instead of the insitution ofslavery ending a natural death within a few years (as the North had done, many in the South had already done, and most of the rest of the world was doing at the time) , racial strife and tension still endure today.