Tuesday, August 11

Slavery or states' rights?

Honest question: Can a legitimate case be made that states' rights was a serious concern of the CSA, or was the predominant concern really just slavery.

A few links, quotes and thoughts:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Civil_War#Causes_of_secession

'Both North and South assumed that if slavery could not expand it would wither and die.'

'Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens said[12] that slavery was the chief cause of secession[13] in his Cornerstone Speech shortly before the war. After Confederate defeat, Stephens became one of the most ardent defenders of the Lost Cause.[14] There was a striking contrast[13][15] between Stephens' post-war states' rights assertion that slavery did not cause secession[14] and his pre-war Cornerstone Speech. Confederate President Jefferson Davis also switched from saying the war was caused by slavery to saying that states' rights was the cause.'

Adding territory. Would it be slave or free, affecting balance in federal government?

'There was the polarizing effect of slavery that split the largest religious denominations (the Methodist, Baptist and Presbyterian churches)[32] and controversy caused by the worst cruelties of slavery (whippings, mutilations and families split apart). The fact that seven immigrants out of eight settled in the North, plus the fact that twice as many whites left the South for the North as vice versa, contributed to the South's defensive-aggressive political behavior.'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Origins_of_the_American_Civil_War

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/States%27_rights
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