The Instigator
Farooq
Pro (for)
Winning
25 Points
The Contender
Ragnar_Rahl
Con (against)
Losing
18 Points

The American Confederacy had the right to secede and the Union should not have invaded.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/15/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,320 times Debate No: 2145
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (20)
Votes (13)

 

Farooq

Pro

Once again I will take the unpopular side in a debate regarding US history. Remember to vote on who presented the best arguments, not whom you agree with (unless they co-relate). So hear it goes, a pro-South argument about the American Civil War.

To understand the root of the problems that eventually manifested themselves in the ugly form of the American Civil War, first one must understand the US's history. It was a nation birthed in blood and rebellion, just as the American Confederacy would have been had the state not failed. It was founded on the principles of a balance between a federal government on the Potomac as well as having a great deal of power centralised in local, regional governments- lest the majority political opinion exert itself to aggressively and meddle in affairs that could be better handled on a regional basis.

But by 1860 things had greatly changed; the newly elected President only had about 40% of popular vote, and was overall the most loathed president in US history. His ideals were radical and out of touch with the majority of Americans, particularly his radical federalism (for he believed that the federal government ought to be more powerful than state governments), a sentiment obviously not shared by too many Americans. Had the Democratic Party not been undergoing a schism at the time between Douglas and Brecknidge (and to a lesser degree, Bell), which lead to a executive incursion by the less popular Republicans. Most of the Southern states' citzenries (excluding Delaware, Missouri and Maryland) determined to PEACEFULLY order their legislatures, (which were as democratically elected as Lincoln, if not more so,) to issue a series of Declarations of Independence and form their own country which better represented their values, namely that of a weak central government.

And they would have succeeded, had an army of invaders launched themselves into the independent (by order of the citizenry) nation known as the Confederate States. Writhing in blood-lust the Republican leadership refused to relent their attacks, a barrage that would cost more than any war in US history before or after, at the price of 600,000 young American and Confederate lives. How is this an example of democracy- using military force to force the will of an unpopular government on the citizenry of a seceding country? Was this not exactly what the British had done four score and seven year ago?
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

To speak of the confederacy having "rights" is to misunderstand the purpose and nature of rights. Rights originate in a series of facts:
1. Each human being who is alive chooses to be such (those who don't die).
2. In order to fulfill that choice man must enact the edicts of his reasoning mind upon his existence.
3. Force from others against one's person or property prevents 2.
4. Other humans have a close-to-equal capacity for force, and the capacity to restrain that force should they so choose.
5. It is therefore rational to refrain from use of force against another human's person or property, so long as it is clear that this restraint shall not be shown if that other one does not reciprocate.

Region, federalism, and especially "democracy" , play no part in this. "Gang rape, after all, is democracy in action"-Terry Goodkind.

Individuals are the possessors of rights, a confederacy can only hold them to the extent the individuals within them do.

The confederacy was created to defend the interests of a group (slaveowners) that regularly initiated force against human beings (african slaves). This violates the condition of reciprocity, thus violates rights. In the violation of the right of another lies the negation of one's own.

Granted that there may be difficulties in the morality of many members of the Union itself, the Confederacy did not have any rights whatsoever, being an explicitly anti-rights organization based upon initiated force. Where no right at all can exist, no right to secede can exist.
Debate Round No. 1
Farooq

Pro

{Chuckling} I see your naivet´┐Ż is typical of an Americans that has been only taught the one-sided propaganda that is dubbed "history" in the artificially patriotic US educational system. Now let me rebut your arguments.

First of all the notion that the North was a group of anti-racism crusaders. This is bogus, taught to justify the onslaught that followed, resulting in the death of 400,000 American lives and 200,000 Confederate ones. (aprox). The North was no where nearly as economically dependant as the South on slave-labour, and managed to exploit their workforce in other methods. Or do you beg to differ that the unionless factories of New England were really that much more respectful of human rights than the cotton plantations of Virginia? The Emancipation Proclamation was purely a war measures act, meant to encourage Negro disloyalty in the South just King George's Knell against the 13 Colonial slavery was meant to inhibit the Revolution's control of her slaves. After the Union had conquered, apartheid in the South still continued for a century. So much for "rights" you talk so admirably about- tell that to the freed slaves who continued to work for their former masters at the same pay, if not lesser pay (due to economic catastrophe caused by the war). The war hurt everybody, and not even Negroes really escaped the burdens it brought with it.

Yet we should look at the South's rebellion just as we did the 13 Colony's so many years ago. There were groups of citizens that were unhappy with their political rights and wished for greater independence from their masters (London, than D.C.) and so they rebelled against those they viewed as tyrants, Lincoln (only had 40% of the vote) and George (unelected). Slavery was an issue in both cases (both times people were concerned about the abolitionist movements in London and D.C.), but the biggest one. Both times, it was political alienation.

Rights are a malleable idea and in 1860's perception they were different ideals than we have today. In those days, as it today in North America (except Cuba), is the principle that every citizen should have the equal democratic right to vote, be heard, and direct his or her country anyway they see fit, even towards separation. (though what counts as a citizen has since expanded) In today's civilized world Canadian military wouldn't be sent in if Quebec voted to separate, would you? That is because most people respect the democratic rights of citizens to do as they please, thus defining the accountable form of democracy we know today.
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

"
First of all the notion that the North was a group of anti-racism crusaders. This is bogus,"

I never said they were now did I? But the fact is that the group of anti-slavery crusaders that was present, William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and such, sided with the north under consideration of all the facts available to them (more facts than are available to you).

"The North was no where nearly as economically dependant as the South on slave-labour, and managed to exploit their workforce in other methods."

Exploit? Am I speaking with a marxist? They weren't dependent on slave-labour because they were very nearly capitalist. This capitalism is precisely what prevents slavery. The fact that it was in their self-interest to oppose slavery is a reason not to oppose them but support them.

"Or do you beg to differ that the unionless factories of New England were really that much more respectful of human rights than the cotton plantations of Virginia?"
Yes I do. They respected the right of people to own themselves and freely exchange their labor and its products.

"The Emancipation Proclamation was purely a war measures act, meant to encourage Negro disloyalty in the South just King George's Knell against the 13 Colonial slavery was meant to inhibit the Revolution's control of her slaves."
Your point? I'm not idealizing the Union as a moral paragon, I'm regarding the Confederacy as something that must be destroyed. When people advocate the same policy you do but for different reasons, it is no reason to abandon the policy. Ignoratio elenchi you seem to be heading towards.

"After the Union had conquered, apartheid in the South still continued for a century."
But if you'll notice, slavery didn't. Just because something does not solve every problem is no reason not to do it if it doesn't solve one. And if you'll notice, the apartheid as you call it was passed by- Southern legislatures! Can you really argue it would not have been worse if those southern legislators were the ONLY ones who had a say in anything that went on around there?

"So much for "rights" you talk so admirably about- tell that to the freed slaves who continued to work for their former masters at the same pay, if not lesser pay (due to economic catastrophe caused by the war). "

It's not the North's fault those slaves didn't leave for greener pastures than the South you know.
And there is no such thing as "less pay" than a slave. Feeding a prisoner is not a wage.

"The war hurt everybody, and not even Negroes really escaped the burdens it brought with it. "

The war harmed southern whites, and those who died in it. It did not harm the former slaves. Slavery is of necessity zero value (even if you make values you do not own them), value can only go up from slavery.

"Yet we should look at the South's rebellion just as we did the 13 Colony's so many years ago." No, the 13 colonies were moving from less freedom to more. The South was moving from more freedom to less. That is the relevant factor in how it should be viewed.

". There were groups of citizens that were unhappy with their political rights and wished for greater independence from their masters (London, than D.C.) and so they rebelled against those they viewed as tyrants, Lincoln (only had 40% of the vote) and George (unelected)."
Democracy is not a right. The police state created by the South can hardly be regarded as an improvement in independence as counts (individual independence from users of force).

"Slavery was an issue in both cases (both times people were concerned about the abolitionist movements in London and D.C.), but the biggest one. Both times, it was political alienation."
The biggest issue in any war changes depending on which participants you ask. You have no evidence to regard "political alienation" as more important than slavery or taxes in a given war.

"
Rights are a malleable idea and in 1860's perception they were different ideals than we have today."
They are malleable ideas only for those with malleable minds.

"In those days, as it today in North America (except Cuba), is the principle that every citizen should have the equal democratic right to vote, be heard, and direct his or her country anyway they see fit, even towards separation."
Argumentum ad populum. The public perception is not a relevant consideration in the matter of whether a given interpretation of rights is correct. There is no lynch mob, firing squad, or river of tears large enough, to establish a right where there is no right.

"In today's civilized world Canadian military wouldn't be sent in if Quebec voted to separate, would you?"

Canada would not allow me access to it's military, but hypothetically, if the majority of Quebec's citizens were attempting to secede from a government that prevented them from oppressing any minority of quebec's citizenry (including a minority of one), I would support any military invasion of quebec. If however the secession would result in increased freedom (e.g. a capitalist secession) then I would support independence.

Secession is not any sort of right but a tactical matter to be treated as each situation that comes up dictates.

"That is because most people respect the democratic rights of citizens to do as they please, thus defining the accountable form of democracy we know today.
"

Argumentum ad populum again. "Most people respecting" a given idea of a right does not cause it to become a right. Indeed there is a conflict of interest here, because "most people" are precisely the ones democracy grants discretion to.

I do not regard the enslavement of people as a right, no matter how large a majority is for it.

Also, just gonna throw this out there for ya, but if blacks were added to the elections of the Confederacy, the confederacy would have been overthrown in minutes. You see, there were more slaves than free men in the confederacy. So not only are your democratic arguments invalid, but they are also based on the false premise that democracy favors the confederacy.
Debate Round No. 2
Farooq

Pro

So many words…

Yes there were a great deal of anti-slavery souls in the North fighting for freedom. It is also true that there were abolitionists in South that put aside their differences and took up arms to defend their country, including one of the most prolific military heroes of the war, Robert Lee. One can compares these people to the anti-slavery souls like Thomas Jefferson that still fought for their country when King George emancipated America's slaves. Likewise in the North, there were great deal of pro-slavery people, and the divide between pro and anti-slavery states is not nearly as fine as some people believe.

I do apologise for quasi-Marxist remarks but I am only trying to establish that slavery did not really greatly affect the living standards of American Negroes to any great degree. They were not the only oppressed demographic in the United States and the cruel treatment of employess in Northern factories was often worse than landowners' treatment of their property (not as easily disposed of). I am a capitalist, but the unfettered form in the mid 1800's was not praiseworthy form that we know today.

"…Ignoratio elenchi you seem to be heading towards."

No this conclusion is not irrelevant because you must realise that without the correct spirit no real reformation can happen. Yes slavery ended, but it was replaced with a form of despicable apartheid, not exactly a great social revolution. The federal power still had no strength to issue reforms when franchise returned to the South. Yes true, Washington did a better job in ending apartheid than Richmond would have (it would probably have ended twenty-five years later likely) but do you know what would have abolished slavery and apartheid even faster? London, but the Americans today still honour the Founding Fathers of their country, as the South would be today for Davies, Lee and Benjamin. Self-rule is still a principle that we honour today, and you must also keep in mind that apartheid was still greatly upheld in the North even at that time and a huge majority of US citizens (as viewed by the North as well, blacks didn't register in their minds as part of this group) had wanted to separate- and had voted on such. Lincoln provoked a needless war, resulting in huge economic hardships, the deaths of many thousands of young men, all for the purpose of holding together a country. Yugoslavia also tried to artificially hold itself together, and that resulted a total mess as the majority refused to allow minority political ideals to separate. Lincoln's name should be compared Tito's in so many ways.

As for your argument that slaves weren't paid realise that money isn't always a measure of wealth. Free rent and food can sometimes be preferred to the wages of unskilled Irish textile workers.

"No, the 13 colonies were moving from less freedom to more. The South was moving from more freedom to less. That is the relevant factor in how it should be viewed."

This contradicts your argumentation. London wanted to free its slaves-, which you believe is a solid measure of freedom. But they also wanted to have their own self-governance, just like the South would years later. You really don't make sense.

In conclusion you have completely failed to differentiate between why one political entity (the very pro-slavery 13 colonies) was justified attaining independent rule but the very pro-slavery Confederate states was not justified in trying to separate. Your arguments resemble that of the the typical uber-patritoic American that believes his country's actions were always justified and your enemies were always wrong, even when they were doing the same sort of thing.

You also fail to understand that perceptions of what counted as a person were different back than, and just because slavery ended does not any sort newfangled glorious utopia was formed in the USA. There are more ways than one to abridge freedom, and the US had plenty of experience in this field. The South was not only rebelling because of different social values (place of Negoroes in society), but because of political reasons (the majority in the North was negating Southern cocerns in congress, and wasn't giving as much independent rule) and economic (such FREEDOM of trade, and lack of economic hindrances that hurt the Southern economy, but helped the North's). My opponent fails to properly address these matters and seems to only repeat the same argument over and over again, about slavery in South, than contradicts himself in praising the American Revolution.
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

"It is also true that there were abolitionists in South that put aside their differences and took up arms to defend their country, including one of the most prolific military heroes of the war, Robert Lee."

Robert E. Lee owned slaves. He was in no sense an abolitionist, simply someone who regarded slavery as a moral problem (one to be left up to "god" to solve."
"Defending his country" is not an excuse until that country is established as valid.

". One can compares these people to the anti-slavery souls like Thomas Jefferson that still fought for their country when King George emancipated America's slaves."

I don't number hypocrites as "anti-slavery," even if they are conflicted about their actions.

King George may have officially emancipated america's slaves, but keep in mind he essentially stood on a platform of enslaving everyone in the colonies. It is this and not any moral merit of Jefferson and co which justifies the revolution.

"I am a capitalist, but the unfettered form in the mid 1800's was not praiseworthy form that we know today. "

If you believe we have capitalism today, I do not number you a capitalist. If you believe that the poor conditions for workers in the 1800's were caused by "unfettered capitalism" (as opposed to a. no better conditions being known anywhere yet due to having beeen even less capitalist recently, and b. violent strikebreaking that interferes with free market processes, along with tariffs, backlashes to attempted regulation that cause businesses to control legislatures, etc.), I do not number you a capitalist. Only those who know the nature of capitalism are qualified to use the title of capitalist. You are at best a Keynesian, as your support of "the progressive tax" in your profile proves.

mid-1800s factory workers may have had bad conditions by today's standards, but not by the standards of anywhere else in the world at the time or before, except those standards reserved for nobility and such. Nowhere were the lower classes richer anywhere in history up to that point than the Northern lower classes in the 1800s. The main reason conditions were not better was because they (the north) had not been even semi-free long enough to have produced enough to make them better yet.

"Yes slavery ended, but it was replaced with a form of despicable apartheid, not exactly a great social revolution."

Justifying the war does not require a "great social revolution," only an improvement on what was there without the war. Apartheid you can legally run north from trumps slavery you can't.

"The federal power still had no strength to issue reforms when franchise returned to the South. "
because southern senator's blocked it.

"Yes true, Washington did a better job in ending apartheid than Richmond would have (it would probably have ended twenty-five years later likely)"
25 years? tell me what leads you to believe they ever would have :D.

"but do you know what would have abolished slavery and apartheid even faster? London, but the Americans today still honour the Founding Fathers of their country, as the South would be today for Davies, Lee and Benjamin."

London would not have ended slavery. It would have ended the official system in which blacks were the only slaves- and replaced it with a world in which all american colonists are slaves to the king/parliament... Or did you not pay attention to the behavior of king George?

By the time London really stopped with those kind of colonial ambitions, they quickly replaced it with socialism (i.e. slavery of all to all rather than all to the king). It was not until, really, mid 20th century that Margaret Thatcher started to roll things back and achieve a level of freedom comparable to what the american revolution produced.

"Self-rule is still a principle that we honour today, and"

That you and some others do. Not we. Not me, in the sense you mean it (democratic localism). The only sort of self-rule I recognize is that of the individual.

"and you must also keep in mind that apartheid was still greatly upheld in the North even at that time and a huge majority of US citizens"
Not to the same extent as it was in the south.

"Lincoln provoked a needless war, resulting in huge economic hardships, the deaths of many thousands of young men, all for the purpose of holding together a country."
His purpose is irrelevant, the consequence of increased freedom for the innocent remains the same. Economic hardships went down rather than up after the war for the non-slaveholders.

As for deaths, those who died are by and large those who complied with the curtailing of freedoms (voters). The only innocent deaths I know of are those who volunteered for the cause. Drafts are regrettable but not necessary to war and not a central issue therefore in our resolution.

"
As for your argument that slaves weren't paid realise that money isn't always a measure of wealth. Free rent and food can sometimes be preferred to the wages of unskilled Irish textile workers.
"

speaking of slaves getting "free" rent and food is the most absurd thing I ever heard. Things ain't free for ya unless you free :D.

Indeed, they did not "get" rent and food in the sense of a value, only in the sense of upkeep. In other words, it doesn't count as yours unless you get to decide how to dispose of it.

A wage however small being yours is superior to a million things that aren't yours.

"This contradicts your argumentation. London wanted to free its slaves-, which you believe is a solid measure of freedom. But they also wanted to have their own self-governance, just like the South would years later. You really don't make sense."

I addressed this nonsense above about london. Black slavery is not the only kind of slavery out there.

"
You also fail to understand that perceptions of what counted as a person were different back than, and just because slavery ended does not any sort newfangled glorious utopia was formed in the USA. T"

No I don't, and you have no evidence for this supposed failure to understand.

"(such FREEDOM of trade, and lack of economic hindrances that hurt the Southern economy, but helped the North's"

Tariff's hurt the south's economy, and also the north's, and yes the north was to blame for those tariffs. But tariffs did not hurt nearly as much as slavery did. It's a helluva lot easier to be a smuggler than a fugitive slave.
Debate Round No. 3
20 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
"Ragnar, I wouldn't have to define exploitation of workers- common knowledge in modern business"

No, modern businessmen do not use the term. Tribalists, marxists, anarcho-syndicalists, and other such primitivists do.

And every time I've ever heard it from these people, they mean hiring people for an agreed upon amount of work and compensation. Which of course is important in capitalism, but in no way bad for my argument- just ask people how much they want to lose their job and then tell them they should, and their response will make it quite clear how important the positive effects of providing jobs are.

If you mean something by exploitation other than hiring, you do have to define it, if you don't, then you are using ignoratio elenchi until you explain yourself.
Posted by mindjob 9 years ago
mindjob
Well then it would be very interesting to see what the courts decide should Alaska or Hawaii ever want to secede. As it is, we were talking about the civil war, which didn't include either; so whatever Hawaii's and Alaska's situations are, they have no bearing in the debate and your premise for it is still false.

But lets take a look at Hawaii and Alaska.

Hawaii did go through the process that you lay out in your comment below, but so what? The same kind of process could be said for texas. Mexico allowed settlers into their territories, but those settlers brought with them slaves. When Mexico complained, the settlers didn't listen, nor did the US. When Mexico tried to kick them out, they told Mexico to go screw themselves and declared themselves independent and asked for the US to help them out. Thus began the Mexican-American war. But what about the Mexican people in the Texas region that didn't want to be part of Texas? They got screwed. Plain and simple. But I'm not about to say that Texas has a right to secede from our constitution after they signed on to uphold and live by the document.

The same is true for both Alaska and Hawaii. Hawaii got screwed, but that was a long time ago and much has happened since then. We didn't rob the country from every Hawaiian. Many Hawaiians joined in with us to create the republic that followed the monarchy and wanted to join the US. That doesn't make what we did right, but we've apologized, like you pointed out, and moved on. A fringe in Hawaii and Texas might want secession based on what happened over 100 years ago, but too few to say that those states have a right to secede, especially with their obligations under the constitution which they signed onto.

The only people that were screwed by our purchase of Alaska were the Inuit, and yes that sucks for them and is sad, but they are a distinct minority now. They are screwed over much more now by global warming, not by us owning Alaska.
Posted by Mangani 9 years ago
Mangani
Ragnar, I wouldn't have to define exploitation of workers- common knowledge in modern business- if you would just look up the word. No offense, but I'm not going to define something that at this level of discussion should be pretty clear.

As for the annexation of Hawai'i, it had nothing to do with the will of the HAWAIIAN people. She was rewriting laws ratified by the previous King under threat of violence from Americans and Europeans. On January 14, 1893, a group of American and Europeans formed a Committee of Safety in opposition to the Queen, and seized control of government. United States Government Minister John L. Stevens, responding to a request from the Committee of Safety expressing concern about possible violence directed against American citizens, summoned a company of uniformed U.S. Marines to come ashore to enforce neutrality. The overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani was successful and the monarchy ended in January 1893. It was replaced by a Provisional Government composed of members of the Committee of Safety. The administration of President Grover Cleveland commissioned the Blount Report, which concluded that the overthrow of Liliʻuokalani was illegal. The U.S. Government first demanded that Queen Liliʻuokalani be reinstated, but the Provisional Government refused. Grover Cleveland, was a friend of Queen Liliuokalani. He had remained opposed to annexation until the end of his term, but McKinley was open to persuasion by U.S. expansionists and by annexationists from Hawaii. He agreed to meet with a committee of annexationists from Hawaii, Lorrin Thurston, Francis Hatch and William Kinney. After negotiations, in June of 1897, McKinley agreed to a treaty of annexation with these representatives of the Republic of Hawaii.

In 1993 a formal apology for the illegal overthrow and annexation of Hawai'i was issued by Congress and signed by President Bill Clinton.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
Mangani, you haven't defined your exploitation yet, until then it's just a floating abstraction without the abstraction. :D

although from what I can tell there is no justification for the annexation of hawaii, it seems it basically occurred due to support from the local populace in order to keep vice laws in place and to keep democracy around (the queen wanted to write a new constitution to give herself power and institute a lottery, plus legalize opium.) Since I don't care about democrat versus monarch as such and consider legalized drugs and gambling superior to none, it would seem from the evidence available I have to oppose hawaii's annexation.

Dunno much about alaska's situation.
Posted by Mangani 9 years ago
Mangani
Mindjob I'm talking about Hawai'i, which was a sovereign nation illegally invaded and annexed by the US (not only was it a recognized sovereign nation, but the queen was illegally arrested and held), and Alaska which was annexed without the consent of the people.

To that you can add the territories annexed through the 1898
Treaty of Paris. With that treaty all colonies, except Cuba which gained sovereignty, of Spain were handed over the the US- including Puerto Rico illegally because it was a sovereign province of Spain by 1897 before the treaty was signed. Puerto Rico had it's own economy, monetary units, and thought it had representation in the Spanish parliament the involvement of Spain in Puerto Rican affairs was limited to military protection during it's transitional status. Puerto Rico was invaded and annexed against the will of the people.
Posted by mindjob 9 years ago
mindjob
I just wanted to correct myself before someone else did. When New Hampshire became the 9th state to ratify the constitution, it went into affect, but only for the states that ratified it. The other states who didn't initially ratify the constitution joined the union after they did eventually ratify it. Even so, Rhode Island became the last of the 13 colonies to ratify it on May 29, 1790, so I don't know which two states Mangani is talking about.

I was just trying to back up your side of the argument, Ragnar. I was directing them at Farooq and Mangani. I hope you didn't take my comments any other way. That said, should we have a debate about Obama?
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
The arguments from the constitution (for both the one of you agreeing with me and the one not) are mere ad authoritatem, which is probably why farooq was wise enough to keep them out of our debate. :D

And no obama but that's another debate.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
"
Ragnar, you fail to understand that Capitalism can't possibly be Capitalism without exploitation."

Define "exploitation."

"It was not economically feasable for the North to maintain slaves, and it was not economically feasable for the South to free them."
A lot of economists of the day disagree with the latter. They made it quite clear they considered slavery bad for the Southern economy, and a lot of the non-slaveholding whites in the south agreed.

Why? You don't have to train supervisors of free men to deal with as much violence for one thing :D.

"There were many abolitionists who fought for the South under the premise of state rights, and others who simply "sided" with the South and wrote against the war like Ezra Heywood. Even General Robert E. Lee- the great general of the Confederacy- is viewed as having been opposed to slavery."

I addressed that if you read the debate.

"
The North had states that maintained the right to own slaves. The South had 4 states that refused to join the Confederacy until they were ordered to send troops to fight- they refused and declared secession. Some freed slaves even offered to fight for the South. Indeed, this is not an issue as "black and white" as elementary school history books would have you believe...
"
Of course the north had states with slaves- but not as many, and the civil war resulted in freeing those slaved. The issue of the debate, as I said earlier, is not the moral value of the union but the value of the invasion and the supposed rights of the confederacy.

I highly resent all the ad hominem crap here trying to paint me as not knowing things just because I haven't mentioned them yet.
Posted by mindjob 9 years ago
mindjob
first inaugural address. Denying the role slavery played in the civil war is irresponsible, ignorant and some of the worst revisionist history that has ever been dreamed up.

Sometimes, it is good to tell the establishment to go screw itself and reject what it tells you. But in this instance, the established role of slavery in the civil war is the only one supported by the primary source evidence. Please stop trying to be a revolutionary in every instance and accept what evidence tells us to be true.

Oh, and GO OBAMA! At least that is something we can both agree on. :)
Posted by mindjob 9 years ago
mindjob
You aren't serious, are you? Not only is it clear. The sections I cited clearly deny the states the ability to secede. And if they weren't clear enough for you, how about article 1, section 10:
"No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation". It doesn't get any clearer than that. Therefore, whatever rights are reserved to the state by the 10th amendment, the right to secede and join a confederation is expressly denied it.

The Declaration of Independence has no legal standing. Why must historians remind so many people of this? The argument you cite is from Locke's social contract, which the people entered into when they ratified the constitution. Not all of the states had to ratify it for it to become the law of the land. Only 9 states needed to ratify it for all states to be bound. Article 7 was included in the original document, and the representatives of all the states at the constitutional convention signed on to it. They were sent by the elected representatives of each state, which derived their power from the people who elected them. Therefore, the people, by delegating their power to a government to rule over them, agreed to the passing of the constitution by their elected representatives. South Carolina signed onto the constitution like the rest, which freed it from whatever legal standing King George gave it. Imagine if they tried to make the argument in 1860 that they were allowed to secede because King George said they could. No one would have followed them. That argument, or line of reasoning I guess, is ridiculous.

Denying the part slavery played is ignoring the entire first half of American history. Its preeminence in American politics at the time is why the founding fathers only agreed to end the slave trade and take it back up after 25 years the constitutions ratification. It is what led to the Compromises of 1820 and 1850, and it is why the south hated Lincoln. Read the Lincoln/Douglas debates and Lincoln's
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