Started by taxed, February 10, 2012, 12:09:07 PM
Quote from: tbone0106 on June 25, 2012, 03:24:50 PMHeh, heh. Hoo boy. "What he said." Such eloquence.What Giles should have said and didn't probably because he was a bit upset was "It was all about slavery because the South could not survive economically without it." Giles has said the equivalent of those words several times elsewhere on this board.The historic argument over the cause of the war is sprinkled with this phrase: "it was all about slavery." And every time, the writer is partly correct, as you are. For some, and in a rather obscure way, the issue was purely the existence of slavery and slaves; the lowest of low whites and other minorities were protected, you might say, by the existence of the black slave underclass below all. But those who were so protected had no say in how things got done. By definition, the only people who could benefit by the mere existence of a class of people who were ALWAYS at the bottom of the food chain are those who are just one step up from there, and they didn't call the shots.The folks who called the shots in the South were slave-owners to a man, and heavily invested in the economic value of slave labor. They were estate owners, plantation owners, lumber barons, sugar cane and cotton millionaires, all of whom depended on the availability of slave labor, not for their souls or their dignity, but for their fortunes. States' rights was a rallying cry, but a weak one. Secession wasn't quite like divorce. It meant crazy nation-building stuff like printing your own money (and finding something to back it up). It meant creating your own navy to protect your thousands of miles of shoreline. It meant finding folks overseas to replace the manufacturing capacity of the North that had just been seceded from. it meant finding a place to sell all that cotton and sugar cane and lumber that slaves produced -- other than the North. Secession was serious business, and was based, in the end, on business.Yeah, it was all about slavery, because the agriculturally-centered southern economy was based on the existence of slavery.
Quote from: elmerfudd on June 26, 2012, 03:56:43 AMI agree to a point. It was definitely about the material wealth that slaves represented, but it was also about "equality." More than a few of those fire eating slavers could not fathom a south where blacks would be equal to whites, and they feared it at least as much, if not more, than they feared losing their wealth. All you gotta do is read the secession speeches for proof.
Quote from: Shooterman on June 26, 2012, 05:31:36 AMThe Yankees believed the same, Elmer. Racism was not confined to the South. In fact, the North was probably even more racist. Lincoln certainly had no use for the Blacks, whether free or slave. Hell, some of the larger owners of slaves were free Blacks. Were they racist as well?
QuoteYeah, it was all about slavery, because the agriculturally-centered southern economy was based on the existence of slavery.