U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > History
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 04-11-2018, 10:48 AM
 
Location: crafton pa
979 posts, read 416,667 times
Reputation: 1201

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by KenFresno View Post
Can't speak for world history but in American history the greatest lies generally involve the Civil War and the mythos that was built around the Confederacy. The Confederates were absolutely evil and the weight of their crimes against humanity and their betrayal of this country has been greatly downplayed. The fact that we allow their statues in public places, that we have military bases and schools named after them is insane.
There are quite a few lies associated with the Civil War. It is true that the South fought to preserve the system of slavery that we now recognize as evil. What is not true is that the North fought the war for the purpose of eliminating slavery. It is not true that the North was somehow morally superior in its treatment of Blacks because of the absence of slavery there. That absence had nothing to do with any moral superiority and everything to do with economics. It was much cheaper and more efficient to use cheap labor in factories than it would have been to actually have to provide food, shelter, etc. for slaves. Racial attitudes in the North were largely about the same as those in the South -- namely that Blacks were inferior and that this was the natural way things should be. Many in the North were adamantly opposed to ending slavery. The owners of factories that relied upon Southern agricultural products naturally did not want to see any changes that would endanger the ability of the South to supply them. The workers in the North did not want to see freed Blacks compete with them for jobs.


Even the "Great Emancipator", Lincoln, was not really all that adamant about abolition. His main policy goal regarding slavery was to contain the spread of slavery so that the Southern states' domination of the Federal government could be challenged or ended. His Emancipation Proclamation was certainly not done out of any great desire to end the institution of slavery, something he believed he lacked the Constitutional authority to do anyway. He issued that proclamation as a purely military measure, as evidenced by the fact that it did not apply to any states that remained loyal to the US, nor did it apply to any areas of the seceded states that were under Federal military control. The idea was to foment unrest among the slaves and hopefully deprive the South of their labor to some degree. Even as the war went on and it became obvious that ending slavery was going to become a goal, Lincoln had no notion of promoting equality. His preferred course was to have all the Blacks deported to Africa.


This idea of South=bad, North=good in the Civil War is really an oversimplification. The South certainly utilized a system that we now recognize as inherently evil; that cannot be denied. It can be denied, though, that they did so because of evil intent. The Southern economy was based entirely on land and slave labor to work that land and make it profitable. To the leaders of the South, ending slavery was no more an option than completely eliminating the use of fossil fuels would be today. (Of course, I'm not equating the two morally, only economically). Our economy is based entirely on fossil fuel usage; we would immediately suffer an enormous decline in living standard should our use of fossil fuels end abruptly. In similar vein, those in the South would have similarly been impoverished should slavery have abruptly ended, as evidenced by the sorry state of the Southern economy in the aftermath of the war. That's not to say that the Southern leaders are to be excused for slavery. However, it does help us understand why people who are not any more inherently evil than others in the same country clung desperately to an inherently evil practice like slavery. It would certainly NOT have been as easy as some think to just give up slavery.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 04-11-2018, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Planet Earth
2,781 posts, read 2,609,648 times
Reputation: 4997
Quote:
Originally Posted by kapie9969 View Post
That the civil war was all about slavery.
Slavery was brought into it, when the war became unpopular. You know get people to fight a moral fight.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-11-2018, 02:52 PM
 
Location: crafton pa
979 posts, read 416,667 times
Reputation: 1201
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlowerPower00 View Post
Slavery was brought into it, when the war became unpopular. You know get people to fight a moral fight.
Not quite. Bringing slavery into it made the war MORE unpopular. There were several states that had slaves but remained in the union (Maryland, Missouri, Delaware, and most importantly Kentucky). In MD and KY at least, bringing slavery in would have almost certainly led to secession. Kentucky was technically neutral at the beginning of the war, and both sides were quite careful to keep their troops and military maneuvers off of Kentucky soil. Eventually, though, fearing an attack by Grant's troops stationed in Cairo, IL (probably justifiably), Southern troops stationed along the Mississippi River in Tennessee invaded Kentucky to go after Grant's force, thereby solidifying Kentucky's loyalty to the Union. Maryland was only kept out of the Confederacy by force; Lincoln had secessionist MD legislators arrested before they could vote on an ordinance of secession.

Even in those states where slavery was not practiced, though, eliminating slavery was not a popular position, and support for the war among the general population would likely have eroded, especially in the early part of the war. As I posted above, racial attitudes among the Northern population were not really all that much different in the North than in the South. Equality was certainly a no-go for anyone, anywhere in the country. Factory owners did not want slavery to end; they wanted the South to be defeated, brought back into the fold, and continue to supply cotton as they always had. Workers feared freed slaves competing with them, taking their jobs or causing lowered wages. Sure, there was an abolitionism movement, but that was a minority of people who favored outright abolition.

It was not until deeper into the war that the Emancipation Proclamation was issued. Even then, this did not mean an end to slavery. It really was only a confiscation of Southern "property", and only applied to areas that were not yet under Union military control. It was intended as a punitive measure to undermine the military capability of the Confederacy. It had a bonus side benefit of ensuring that Britain and France could not extend official diplomatic recognition to the CSA. It was most certainly NOT an end to slavery.


Slavery did end after the war, obviously, but that was even in doubt. Had Lincoln not been assassinated, it is unclear whether slavery would have ended in the aftermath of the war. Lincoln favored a relatively lenient policy for readmitting states to the Union. He favored a policy whereby all but the Confederate high command would receive amnesty and that a state could be readmitted when 10% of its population agreed to renounce secession and take a loyalty oath. Such a policy would not necessarily have made slavery illegal, although as a practical matter many slaves had already deserted their plantations when Union troops were nearby. It would certainly have been difficult to recapture all or even a substantial portion of those slaves, but nothing in Lincoln's plan indicated that slavery needed to end in order for readmission.


As a result of Lincoln's assassination, though, Johnson assumed office and Congress won a political battle for control of Reconstruction. The Radical Republicans in Congress instituted a very different set of requirements, which included ratification of the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, which eliminated slavery, provided for equal protection under the law regardless of race, and permitted freed slaves to vote. That's why slavery ended after the war. While some in Congress may have been well intentioned, the program was mostly a politically motivated one. Congress knew that the Southern population was comprised in large part of Blacks and that those Blacks would certainly vote for Republicans.


It does amaze me how much the Civil War gets short shrift when taught in schools. Most people think pretty much as follows:


1. The South had slaves, North wanted to eliminate slavery.
2. They tried a few compromises, but eventually the South decided they had to leave the Union.
3. This led inevitably to war.
4. The North fought to eliminate slavery, and eventually won the war (something about Gettysburg and how the South could have won had they won that battle sometimes gets inserted here) when Lee surrendered at Appomattox.


Just about that entire story is misleading, incomplete, or untrue:


1. The elimination of slavery was never a particularly popular idea in the North. Slavery ensured production of cotton for Northern textile factories and ensured that freed Blacks would not compete with Northern factory workers for jobs and drive down wages. It was the spread of slavery to new states that the North fought. The Federal government had been controlled predominantly by the South to that point, and the North knew that spreading slavery to new states would solidify that control. Conversely preventing that spread would allow the North to challenge Southern control.


2. Compromises were tried, and to some degree succeeded. There was still the conflict over control of the government, though. When Lincoln was elected, the South realized that they likely had lost this battle and made the (ill-advised) decision to leave the Union instead of trying to further compromise.


3. The secession of the South was an event that really caught people off guard. It wasn't really a surprise as such, but rather something that nobody actually took seriously. The South had used the threat of secession for decades as a tool to pressure the North into compromises and concessions. The 1860 secession was seen in a similar light. When they actually went through with it, nobody really knew how to handle it. Buchanan is often criticized for inaction, but he believed he lacked the power to take up arms against the seceding states even though he thought secession was illegal. Even in the North, there was a large segment of the population that did not want to go to war with the South. There was a lot of sentiment for just letting the seceding states go in peace. Lincoln did not go to war right away, either. He did oppose secession and did not suffer the same qualms about using force that Buchanan did (obviously), but he also feared that other states, most notably Virginia would secede if he jumped right into conflict. It was only the situation regarding Ft. Sumter that provoked a use of force by South Carolinian troops and led to war. The war was FAR from inevitable.


4. As detailed above, the war was fought, from the North's point of view to restore the Union. Eliminating slavery was an end result of the war, but not the purpose of it. The North of course did win the war, but the war certainly continued after Appomattox. (The actual end date is somewhat of a gray area; it wasn't until 1866 that Johnson declared an end to hostilities and the last organized Rebel troops surrendered). Gettysburg was certainly a crucial battle, but there's no reason to think that the South would have overcome the manpower, economic, infrastructural, and industrial advantages of the North had Pickett's charge succeeded. Likely, Lee's army would have been trapped in hostile country in PA and been unable to maintain its supply lines and forced to retreat back to Virginia, and the war would have carried on. The simultaneous loss of Vicksburg and with it control of the Mississippi River was far more damaging to the South than a loss at Gettysburg would have been to the North anyway.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-11-2018, 06:41 PM
 
592 posts, read 568,600 times
Reputation: 963
I had southerners mention taxes as one of the reasons for the desire to succeed. Many southern people were Christians and didn't approve of slavery.The winners write the history.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-11-2018, 09:36 PM
 
2,925 posts, read 1,233,638 times
Reputation: 2217
Quote:
Originally Posted by kapie9969 View Post
Many southern people were Christians and didn't approve of slavery.The winners write the history.
Some southerners may have not approved of slavery, but their being Christian had nothing to do with it. Nearly all slave owners and defenders of slavery were Christians.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-11-2018, 10:11 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,496 posts, read 21,812,115 times
Reputation: 8695
GOD, if there is one, didn't put us here to serve him or sing his praises. All that is written about him was done by someone seeking to exploit others. Good works should be for your satisfaction not because you are seeking a reward.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-11-2018, 11:12 PM
 
2,251 posts, read 904,071 times
Reputation: 2244
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgn2013 View Post
Oddly enough though, if you look at the declarations of states that seceded from the union, they generally mention slavery above anything else as the cause for separation.

It wasn't the ONLY reason, but if there was no slavery....there's probably no Civil War. Politics then would probably be more like today (and 1860's version of 'Blue State' vs 'Red State' America). I'm not sure why we're loathe to admit that freeing/enslaving blacks was the cause of such a bloody war. It's as if people aren't comfortable with the idea of blackness being centered in any discussion.

The average John Doe solider likely didn't think about slavery much since he probably owned no slaves. However, the powerbrokers driving the push for secession were almost singularly concerned with slavery. The other reasons used were helpful in convincing non-slave owning whites that they too needed to join.
The average John Doe would have been worried about things like preserving his higher position in the social order and job competition from newly liberated slaves. And the fear that if emancipated black men would begin dating/marrying/ having sexual relations with white women was a positively HUGE fear among members of all classes...including the
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-12-2018, 08:08 AM
 
Location: crafton pa
979 posts, read 416,667 times
Reputation: 1201
Quote:
Originally Posted by robertbrianbush View Post
The average John Doe would have been worried about things like preserving his higher position in the social order and job competition from newly liberated slaves. And the fear that if emancipated black men would begin dating/marrying/ having sexual relations with white women was a positively HUGE fear among members of all classes...including the
That's a good point. In the South, for those not directly affected economically by slavery, it was the fear of equality that was a driving force. People in both the North and South, unfortunately, regarded Blacks as an inferior race, and the notion that freed slaves might intermingle in White society was a very real fear all throughout the country. That, plus the economic dependence on slave labor, made it VERY unlikely that the South would have ever agreed to end slavery peacefully.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-12-2018, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Planet Earth
2,781 posts, read 2,609,648 times
Reputation: 4997
Quote:
Originally Posted by stremba View Post
Not quite. Bringing slavery into it made the war MORE unpopular. There were several states that had slaves but remained in the union (Maryland, Missouri, Delaware, and most importantly Kentucky). In MD and KY at least, bringing slavery in would have almost certainly led to secession. Kentucky was technically neutral at the beginning of the war, and both sides were quite careful to keep their troops and military maneuvers off of Kentucky soil. Eventually, though, fearing an attack by Grant's troops stationed in Cairo, IL (probably justifiably), Southern troops stationed along the Mississippi River in Tennessee invaded Kentucky to go after Grant's force, thereby solidifying Kentucky's loyalty to the Union. Maryland was only kept out of the Confederacy by force; Lincoln had secessionist MD legislators arrested before they could vote on an ordinance of secession.

Even in those states where slavery was not practiced, though, eliminating slavery was not a popular position, and support for the war among the general population would likely have eroded, especially in the early part of the war. As I posted above, racial attitudes among the Northern population were not really all that much different in the North than in the South. Equality was certainly a no-go for anyone, anywhere in the country. Factory owners did not want slavery to end; they wanted the South to be defeated, brought back into the fold, and continue to supply cotton as they always had. Workers feared freed slaves competing with them, taking their jobs or causing lowered wages. Sure, there was an abolitionism movement, but that was a minority of people who favored outright abolition.

It was not until deeper into the war that the Emancipation Proclamation was issued. Even then, this did not mean an end to slavery. It really was only a confiscation of Southern "property", and only applied to areas that were not yet under Union military control. It was intended as a punitive measure to undermine the military capability of the Confederacy. It had a bonus side benefit of ensuring that Britain and France could not extend official diplomatic recognition to the CSA. It was most certainly NOT an end to slavery.


Slavery did end after the war, obviously, but that was even in doubt. Had Lincoln not been assassinated, it is unclear whether slavery would have ended in the aftermath of the war. Lincoln favored a relatively lenient policy for readmitting states to the Union. He favored a policy whereby all but the Confederate high command would receive amnesty and that a state could be readmitted when 10% of its population agreed to renounce secession and take a loyalty oath. Such a policy would not necessarily have made slavery illegal, although as a practical matter many slaves had already deserted their plantations when Union troops were nearby. It would certainly have been difficult to recapture all or even a substantial portion of those slaves, but nothing in Lincoln's plan indicated that slavery needed to end in order for readmission.


As a result of Lincoln's assassination, though, Johnson assumed office and Congress won a political battle for control of Reconstruction. The Radical Republicans in Congress instituted a very different set of requirements, which included ratification of the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, which eliminated slavery, provided for equal protection under the law regardless of race, and permitted freed slaves to vote. That's why slavery ended after the war. While some in Congress may have been well intentioned, the program was mostly a politically motivated one. Congress knew that the Southern population was comprised in large part of Blacks and that those Blacks would certainly vote for Republicans.


It does amaze me how much the Civil War gets short shrift when taught in schools. Most people think pretty much as follows:


1. The South had slaves, North wanted to eliminate slavery.
2. They tried a few compromises, but eventually the South decided they had to leave the Union.
3. This led inevitably to war.
4. The North fought to eliminate slavery, and eventually won the war (something about Gettysburg and how the South could have won had they won that battle sometimes gets inserted here) when Lee surrendered at Appomattox.


Just about that entire story is misleading, incomplete, or untrue:


1. The elimination of slavery was never a particularly popular idea in the North. Slavery ensured production of cotton for Northern textile factories and ensured that freed Blacks would not compete with Northern factory workers for jobs and drive down wages. It was the spread of slavery to new states that the North fought. The Federal government had been controlled predominantly by the South to that point, and the North knew that spreading slavery to new states would solidify that control. Conversely preventing that spread would allow the North to challenge Southern control.


2. Compromises were tried, and to some degree succeeded. There was still the conflict over control of the government, though. When Lincoln was elected, the South realized that they likely had lost this battle and made the (ill-advised) decision to leave the Union instead of trying to further compromise.


3. The secession of the South was an event that really caught people off guard. It wasn't really a surprise as such, but rather something that nobody actually took seriously. The South had used the threat of secession for decades as a tool to pressure the North into compromises and concessions. The 1860 secession was seen in a similar light. When they actually went through with it, nobody really knew how to handle it. Buchanan is often criticized for inaction, but he believed he lacked the power to take up arms against the seceding states even though he thought secession was illegal. Even in the North, there was a large segment of the population that did not want to go to war with the South. There was a lot of sentiment for just letting the seceding states go in peace. Lincoln did not go to war right away, either. He did oppose secession and did not suffer the same qualms about using force that Buchanan did (obviously), but he also feared that other states, most notably Virginia would secede if he jumped right into conflict. It was only the situation regarding Ft. Sumter that provoked a use of force by South Carolinian troops and led to war. The war was FAR from inevitable.


4. As detailed above, the war was fought, from the North's point of view to restore the Union. Eliminating slavery was an end result of the war, but not the purpose of it. The North of course did win the war, but the war certainly continued after Appomattox. (The actual end date is somewhat of a gray area; it wasn't until 1866 that Johnson declared an end to hostilities and the last organized Rebel troops surrendered). Gettysburg was certainly a crucial battle, but there's no reason to think that the South would have overcome the manpower, economic, infrastructural, and industrial advantages of the North had Pickett's charge succeeded. Likely, Lee's army would have been trapped in hostile country in PA and been unable to maintain its supply lines and forced to retreat back to Virginia, and the war would have carried on. The simultaneous loss of Vicksburg and with it control of the Mississippi River was far more damaging to the South than a loss at Gettysburg would have been to the North anyway.

I think you are underestimating the effect of the abolitionist movement, I mean look at "Uncle Tom's Cabin". States rights were the initial reason for the war.

But you cannot leave out the abolitionist movement had SOME effect on the war and it's popularity. Very ironic considering Brown University in Rhode Island played a big role in the slave trade.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-19-2018, 07:44 AM
 
2,925 posts, read 1,233,638 times
Reputation: 2217
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tritone View Post
This is a HUGE and pervasive myth, that seems to be unstoppable. It's promoted by left-leaning people and the "Latinx" generation.
I decided to start a research blog to expose Latino historical revisionism:

https://forgottenlatinohistory.blogspot.com/
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > History
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top