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Old 01-14-2019, 08:19 AM
 
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Not to mention that the Emancipation Proclamation motivated slaves to run away and resist the owners. Since they were the backbone of the support system for the Confederate armies, their absence doomed the war effort and forced white soldiers away from the battlefield in increasing numbers.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:51 AM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
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Originally Posted by maf763 View Post
American politicians didn't invent slavery, but they fostered and maintained it. If you don't see that as a cause of the Civil War, then you should probably just stay on the politics forum.

One side element of the Emancipation Proclamation is that it enabled the Union army to recruit black soldiers. By the end of the war, the Union had more black soldiers than the Confederacy had soldiers. Psychologically, the thought of freedmen with guns probably scared the crap out of southerners.
The subject is not the cause of the war. We are talking about various methods that could have served the slaves better, if there are any.
I will post in whichever forum I choose to, unless prevented by a moderator.
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:01 AM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
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Originally Posted by VM1138 View Post
Not to mention that the Emancipation Proclamation motivated slaves to run away and resist the owners. Since they were the backbone of the support system for the Confederate armies, their absence doomed the war effort and forced white soldiers away from the battlefield in increasing numbers.
Probably true. But I think the war effort was doomed from the beginning. An agrarian society simply cannot compete with an industrialized one.

An interesting read is the book of stories "When I was a Slave". FDR commissions the collection of 1st person accounts from ex slaves who were still alive. The stories were taken down verbatim, which makes it a little hard to understand at times.
The originals are kept in Washington, but there is a copy available.
In this book you will find that a great many slaves were never told of The Emancipation Proclamation, and some (a few) were never even told that the war had ended. The latter group were mostly West of The Mississippi.
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Old 01-17-2019, 03:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Ralph_Kirk View Post
It wasn't really so much using Christianity (that was, actually, kept from many slaves), as it was sheer physical brutality, such as repeated rape--including homosexual rape--and other forms of torture. What the character Toby in "Roots" went through was actually not the exception but a small example of what was the rule for new slaves.

I'm not going to give the slightest bit of consideration to what a Confederate school book said about the subject. I browsed an Alabama eighth grade schoolbook back in 1996 that stated the slaves in the South were all happy and healthy along with everyone else "until the Civil War and the subsequent Reconstruction brought misery to everyone." I put that in quotes because that's what it said.

And this very day, Texas schoolbooks don't even use the word "slaves," they use "immigrant workers."
Fake news. I went to school in Texas and I can assure you that not only see the word "slaves" in textbooks, but you get a little dose of white guilt from your teacher to go with it just like you probably do everywhere else.
As for "happy and healthy" who knows what that meant in 1860. The average age was 45, and access to proper healthcare was very limited, and conditions in factories utilizing free labor were dangerous, dark, and oppressive. Being poor anywhere in the US was likely comparably miserable compared to what it is today. "Happy and healthy" most likely meant you were fed and had a place to sleep at night.
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Old 01-17-2019, 03:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Listener2307 View Post
Very good.
I have long thought that the Civil War was unnecessary. It was not necessary to literally destroy half the country in the name of saving it.
No, the slaves were not done any favors. Various schedules for granting freedom were discussed, but whoever had the bright idea of suddenly freeing millions of illiterate, angry, dependent refugees in the middle of a racist country had rocks in their head. It was a disaster that reverberates today.
I've always wondered what the point was. We know the North clearly weren't humanitarians as they were concurrently engaged in the annihilation of Native Americans and exploitation of immigrant free labor at that same time. They had no illusions of ending slavery in Cuba or Brazil or Africa and slavery was still legal in Washington DC at the beginning of the war, so it's doubtful they just wanted social justice in general. I can't imagine knowing slaves harvested cotton in the South really kept them up at night.

From what we do know, is that the Northern economy was very different from the Southern economy, thus different and conflicting political philosophies on how to run the country and manage westward expansion. Fair enough, but when the South seceded, the North would have a political monopoly in what was left of the United States.
What incentive would there have been to not only get 300K Northern troops killed in a war, while destroying the entire infrastructure and creating hostility and animosity within the part of the country they want to maintain at gunpoint into the Union, and commit to diverting a great portion of what's left of the nation's tax base to reconstruct the part of the country they destroyed?

Considering neither Brazil, nor Cuba nor anywhere else that slavery non violently ended went through a "Jim Crow" phase, leads me to believe that Jim Crow was the result of creating unnecessary animosity and mismanaging the ending of slavery that we now know in retrospect would have likely died out within a generation anyway.
The entire Civil War and Reconstruction should be an epic historical lesson on what not to do.


As for the slaves freeing themselves, not only would have it been nearly impossible, but doing so would have likely lead to a country like Haiti, which has been plagued with being the most underperforming country in the Western Hemisphere for over 2 centuries. Noble causes are not always good ideas.
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Old 01-17-2019, 04:55 PM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
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Originally Posted by Ziggy100 View Post
... in 1860 ... The average age was 45, and access to proper healthcare was very limited, and conditions in factories utilizing free labor were dangerous, dark, and oppressive. Being poor anywhere ... likely comparably miserable compared to what it ... "Happy and healthy" most likely meant you were fed and had a place to sleep at night.
You describe the condition of the average human being - in fact, 45 is generous for average life expectancy, it was more like 30 - of every race, place, language, ideology, socio-political system throughout history until around the 1920s when the first fruits of industrialization were starting to mature in relatively few early-adapter countries.

Slavery in the north American colonies/US was the last gasp of the agricultural age. There was nothing unusual about it; on the contrary, it was the default position for a large swathe of humanity for some 10,000 years.

Unusual, shameful, dishonorable, disgusting and downright counter-production and unacceptable was, and to a certain extent still is, how the ex-slaves in the United States were treated afterwards because of their race.

Racism is not the root of slavery. The root of racism is something else, and it breaks through the surface right at the cusp of industrialization.

Last edited by bale002; 01-17-2019 at 05:18 PM..
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Old 01-17-2019, 05:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bale002 View Post

Racism is not the root of slavery. The root of racism is something else, and it breaks through the surface right at the cusp of industrialization.
Actually, I think i racism was the norm since the beginning of time and the idea of equality is a fairly new and progressive concept that only spans the past few decades.
Every culture has at one point an excuse to feel superior to another be it racism, differences in religion, social class, culture, nationality, etc.
I canít think of any period of time where people saw themselves as equals to everybody else.

Oregon for example was founded as a free state however blacks were not allowed to own property and were otherwise heavily discouraged from moving there. Oregonís founders didnít believe in slavery not because they believed in equality, but because they didnít want to live in close proximity to blacks. They wanted an all white state. They were too racist to believe in slavery.
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Old 01-17-2019, 06:32 PM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
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Originally Posted by Ziggy100 View Post
Actually, I think racism was the norm since the beginning of time ...
Every ... power group ... has at one point an excuse to feel superior to another ... power group.

I can’t think of any period of time where people saw themselves as equals to everybody else.
Well, if you employ "racism" as a catch-all term, then, yes of course.

History clearly show that humans - even of same race, same ideology, same language, whatever other sameness and similarity - have been clubbing each other to death and/or pummeling each other into slavery, servitude, etc. because of power group rivalry.

Period.

Now, Euro-American(Japanese) racism - not at the dusk of the age of agriculture - but at the dawn of industrialization was somewhat new and unusual.

Put another way, there is no necessary connection between slavery and racism throughout human history, while there is a clear connection between racism and the exclusion of African-Americans from the early industrialization process in the United States, yes, a stupid policy that has cost dearly.

Last edited by bale002; 01-17-2019 at 06:57 PM..
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bale002 View Post
Well, if you employ "racism" as a catch-all term, then, yes of course.

History clearly show that humans - even of same race, same ideology, same language, whatever other sameness and similarity - have been clubbing each other to death and/or pummeling each other into slavery, servitude, etc. because of power group rivalry.

Period.

Now, Euro-American(Japanese) racism - not at the dusk of the age of agriculture - but at the dawn of industrialization was somewhat new and unusual.

Put another way, there is no necessary connection between slavery and racism throughout human history, while there is a clear connection between racism and the exclusion of African-Americans from the early industrialization process in the United States, yes, a stupid policy that has cost dearly.
I donít necessarily find it unusual. Freed slaves were dumped into an economy that was already dominated by immigrants and native poor whites. Animosity is bound to arise when competition is set up for oneís own livelihood. Freed slaves likely drove wages down as well. Itís hard to compete with somebody who is used to working for free.
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:28 PM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
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Originally Posted by Ziggy100 View Post
I've always wondered what the point was...........
The entire Civil War and Reconstruction should be an epic historical lesson on what not to do........
I just selected those two points for discussion, although you make several points worthy of it.
We are supposed to learn from history, or so we say. Can you imagine the result if someone had had the courage to say, "The South wants to secede. Fine. Let's agree to part ways amicably, and remain trading partners. Further, let's agree to revisit the issue every 25 years in perpetuity, or until we are rejoined as one country"..... or something like that.
An escaped slave - and there were plenty of them - would then escape not just to The North, but to a foreign country, and The Confederate States would have no claim to them. That would have been a great improvement over what happened.
Slavery was dying. Our favorite European partners had abandoned it and it should have been evident that The Confederacy would sooner or later be forced out of the slave business.
It should indeed have been a lesson in what not to do.


On that subject, here is an excellent treatise by Henry Louis Gates where he discusses the reasons free blacks had to remain in The South after they had been freed. And a lot of them did remain in the South.
Why Did Free Blacks Stay in the South? African American History Blog | The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross
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