Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Interesting perspective of politics upon history.

Every historian with a grain of credibility agrees that the reason the south succeeded from the north was because they depended upon slavery for their economic interests and they didn't believe that African-American slaves were inferior and should not be free citizens.
Actually, anyone who has every taken a decent American history course or read a book on American history knows this. There was a movement in the United States at the time, especially in the north, to abolish the institution of slavery. IT was THE issue of mid 19th Century America. The nation was growing and the thing that was causing it the most growing pains was slavery. Google "dred scott."
So the south went traitorous and succeeded from the Union. They set up their own gov't and basically declared war on the United States of America. See, they set up a separate country and went to war against (began killing) the troops that were in that area of the mother country. That's treason of the worse kind.
They were defeated by the United States of America and the Union was reunited and preserved. From that era rose the American hero Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was an extremely strong man who was also extremely intellectual and did absolutely nothing and made no decisions without intense study of the facts and all sides of the issues. This trait on the part of this great man is one of the big factors in the fact that the United States exists today as a single whole nation. Imagine the chaos wed have if the southern states were a separate country. When would slavery have ended? How? What kind of sad socio-economic mess would we have in the SE corner of this part of the continent?
Now take a look at the information below.

Civil War still divides Americans
By: CNN Political Unit
Washington (CNN) - . . . When asked the reason behind the Civil War, whether it was fought over slavery or states' rights, 52 percent of all Americas said the leaders of the Confederacy seceded to keep slavery legal in their state, but a sizeable 42 percent minority said slavery was not the main reason why those states seceded. . .

When broken down by political party, most Democrats said southern states seceded over slavery, independents were split and most Republicans said slavery was not the main reason that Confederate states left the Union.
Republicans were also most likely to say they admired the leaders of the southern states during the Civil War, with eight in 10 Republicans expressing admiration for the leaders in the South, virtually identical to the 79 percent of Republicans who admired the northern leaders during the Civil War.

That's kind of incredible. I'm not surprised that 40% of southern whites sympathize more with the confederacy than the union. Afterall, they're southern whites, need we say more? But the fact that 25% of ALL Americans feel this way sorta knocks me around a little.
The real kicker however is that 80% of republicans "admire" the confederate leaders is scary. The confederate leaders were traitors of the worse kind. They should have been rounded up and shot at the end of the Civil War. Really, it would have alleviated a lot of the problems we have today. Instead, the south was allowed to carry on as if nothing had happened despite the fact that they were sworn enemies of the United States of America.

So now 80% of the republican party "admire" with those traitors and racists and while I hesitate to divide us along party lines, I have to ask what this says for the conservative elements in political America. Are they racist to the degree that they "admire" a faction that wanted to keep slavery in America? Is the racial issue what really drives them to "admire" the confederacy? How does that all apply to their gravitation toward movements like the "tea party" and other extremist right wing groups? Do they also "admire" the extremist right wing white supremist groups? Afterall, these are the modern day confederates.


rainywalker said...

I admire Edwin Rommel but that doesn't make me a Nazie.

A good read I have is, "Lincoln at Gettysburg, The Words That Remade America by Garry Wills." It explores the Gettysburg Address in depth and makes an argument that it changed the way we think about the Constitution. 317 pages. Recommend highly, excellent read.

Herbert Weaver said...

Was re-watching that old Ken Burns civil war documentary the other night and the thing I took away was how fucking dumb the small-government, pro-secessionist, confederates were - and still are. They're the people who tried to build an empire based on a loose confederacy of states that collapsed because central govt had no power to get anything done.

Then, of course, they were the racist bastards who caused thousands of deaths by starvation on both sides because Lincoln refused to return confed POWs because the south wouldn't drop their policy of killing black soldiers who surrendered.

Lee and Davis should have been hanged as war criminals and anyone who admires their sick legacy needs a head check.

SagaciousHillbilly said...

Rainy, It's one thing to admire a great general's tactics and achievement if you're into that sort of thing. I've got no problem with that, but do you really believe these people are admiring confederate leaders because of their tactical skills, organizational skills or ability ot govern, etc.?.
You know the ugly truth here.

rainywalker said...

Just making a point. Those kind of people are about one nut short of a brain.

rainywalker said...

Sagacious the Civil War was the last great war where a large number of soldiers still had honor. Many of the officers went to college together. That's why McClellan called Robert E Lee, "Bobby." So no I do not think all those officers should have been hanged. Which again brings me back to the Gettysburg Address. It was a healing document, not one which foretold the coming of dead officers.
A case in point. A confederate Capt had been captured by the Union and saw two soldiers bringing in a Confederate flag. He ask if he could look at it. He folded the flag and started crying. It was from the 4Th Texas that was wiped out at Antietam in the first 20 minutes of battle, his brother's unit. He gave the flag back to the soldiers and said, "put this in a place of honor."
There is very little you hear of honor in battle now. They fly drones out of Miami and kill individual's thousands of miles away. Where is the honor in that?
Ho Che Men said, "There is neither good or bad in war, only friends and enemies."

Herbert Weaver said...

My understanding is that McClellan hated Lee so much during the war that it was his idea to build Arlington cemetery in Lee's front yard to remind him of all the men who died because of him.

SagaciousHillbilly said...

Interesting stuff Rainy. Appreciate it.
War is an ugly f'ed mess no matter the level of honor. For all the honor during the civil war, it was the bloodiest horror in US history. I just don't see the honor of the south's preemptive strike and secession, but I understand and empathize with the individual honor and the individual tragedy of it all.
i just think that if the south had been more harshly condemned after the war and delt with a little less sympathetically it wouldn't be the mess that it is now.
The first few years after the war went well with occupation and the Freedmens Bureau, but then the south was left to their own devices and things went to hell with the rise of the KKK, jim crow, etc. It went right back to where they were before the war in many ways.

rainywalker said...

Sagacious your right and here we are today. There are leaders both in the US and other countries that I would like to shake hands with. Some dead and some alive.

Herbert I would be interested in seeing any data on Gen. McClellan taking Robert E Lee's property [which the US government did] out of hate.

McClellan spoke kindly in his dispatches of Lee and at Antietam gave Lee an extra day to escape. The war could have ended there, that day, Lee was beat.
McClellan was reprimanded by the President.
From my reading and own opinion of what happened at Antietam, I believe McClellan had no interest in humiliating Lee. Strange, but nothing more than that.