Owl For President

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Response to a revisionist view of Southern culpability in the Civil War.


Gee, I'm sorry, I didn't know that history was now being made up to suit our fancies. Let's look at the basics of this article and why they are dead wrong and filled with research bias.

1.The South attacked the North, not vice-versa. After five years of having hoopla parties in which effigies of Lincoln, and other effigies (as well as real people) were also burned. Drunk on whiskey, these mobs sometimes attacked suspected Northerners. Meanwhile, in the North, it is true they didn't think about fighting the South, or whether it would win, because THEY DIDN'T PLAN A WAR WITH THE SOUTH. Most Northerners could have cared less about war, Southerners, Secession, or slavery for that matter. They just didn't give a damn. The south, on the other hand, was filled with passionate conversations at Cotillions, Debutante Balls and military and political dancing parties about the inevitable war with the North, and the "slight" of the Federal Government in not enforcing Dred Scott in states that would not themselves enforce Federal or state laws concerning the return of slaves (or should I say FREE MEN WHO HAD BEEN SLAVES). The south made it plain that the non-enforcement of the Dred Scott decision was a deciding factor in their determination to secede from the Union (of free men).

2.Re-framing Abolition as some sort of "religious sanctimony," is so beyond the pale, it's hard where to begin. It's like describing the SCBC (Southern Christian Baptist Coalition) as "religious zealots," when they supported ending desegregation and the speeches of Martin Luther King Jr. It's confused mumbo jumbo, and does not strike me as an academically sound proposition, but rather one clouded by research bias. In fact, there were many "religious zealots" who supported slavery in the slave times, but the issue was what FEDERAL AND STATE governments did, not what some kook-ball preachers said or did, that mattered. Yeah, there were Abolitionists who happened to be Fiery-eyed preachers, because being anti-slavery made SENSE. But, on the other hand, there were also fiery-eyed preachers in South Carolina railing against the "do-gooder abolitionists" who they sanctimoniously labeled devil worshipers.

3.Comparing the states, today, pulling out of the Union over abortion or anything else first off, sillly. If a state pulled out of the Union, what exactly would that mean? They are abrogating Federal legal protection from search and seizure laws? They are declaring war on their neighboring state in a desperate contest for resources? How can seceding possibly serve land-locked states? It's just all so pathetically unthoughtful, and would never pass muster in a real vote. Secession in 1860 involved a Whooped up, bloodlusted population FED ON WITNESSING LYNCHINGS, and supported by the disparate states governments of the Pre-Bellum South. Now we have a complacent population, few of whom are land owners, who are told to hide under their desks in school and watch the Cosby show and Reality TV when they are bored.

The entire gist of the article is that the North somehow initiated this war, which in fact is the exact opposite of the truth. McClellan, for example, far from prosecuting the war, did a series of defensive actions, won most of them, yet never pressed his advantage against an aggressive Southern army. Lincoln became so incensed with McClellan's incompetence (or downright treachery) that he replaced him. How does that get turned around into our blundering presence in Libya, or presence in Iraq or anywhere else? In the Former, an aggressor NATION, made up of several separate states, and calling itself The Confederacy, announced and made war upon, in a brutal way, a North that was unprepared for and not expecting an armed conflict. The North's counter attack took nearly 18 months to really get going! It is simply untrue to announce here or in a revisionist history that the North started the war.

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