View single post by CleburneFan
 Posted: Fri Sep 12th, 2008 02:32 am
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Joined: Mon Oct 30th, 2006
Location: Florida USA
Posts: 1021

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44th VA INF wrote: For over a 100 years our country has debated on why it went to war with its self  

My Teache knows how i have a passion for studing the war and has asked me if i would like to teach part of the lesson i would like to use my own books and knowlge rater than that book well i would like to here ya thoughts on what i should do

My suggestion to you would be to attempt, in so far as possible, to present a balanced picture of why each side fought. Another suggestion would be to avoid inflammatory rhetoric such as calling Lincoln a "tyrant" or similarly emotionally charged phraseology because such vocabulary diminishes one's seeming objectivity.

The reason for the war boiled down to its simplest elements at the start over the South's right to secede.  The South claimed the right to secede to protect States Rights. The North believed just as strongly the South had no right to secede.

But why did the South so fervently want to secede? For the South, what was basically at the heart of the issue was trying to maintain Southern slavery or even expand the institution of slavery to new territories. At that time an outspoken Abolitionist movement was flourishing in the North that threatened to clamp down or eventually end slavery.

But the South, a heavily agrarian society, felt their economy could not survive without slaves. They also felt emancipating slaves threatened the Southern way of life and they imagined that freed slaves would pose a definite danger to their former owners.

But the North started out in the war to stop the secession. Emancipation came later and not even all Northerners were happy about that. Many fought to preserve the Union, but had no ambition to end slavery.

And that, in a nutshell, is your answer to an issue which is far more complex. Just remember, there were great heroes and scoundrels on both sides. Neither side had a monopoly on honor and valor. Neither side had a monoply on atrocities.

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