And now for something COMPLETELY different: former NAACP leader defends the Confederate flag ... : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread

See this article in the Asheville (NC) Tribune.

What do YOU think? :)

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000


Thanks Stephen. When I read that article in the Asheville newspaper I was thrilled to think that there are people like H. K. Edgerton in this country. Everything he said was true and what a brave man he is to take such a stand.

-- Pat (, June 06, 2000.

I can't even fathom this gentleman's take on American history are accurate. Is this the Bizarro World TB2K Uncensored Forum? I'm beginning to think it might be.

-- Bingo1 (, June 06, 2000.

I have no problem with the "stars and bars". I do, however, have a problem with the flags of South Carolina and Georgia. These PARTICULAR confederate flags were raised in 1956 almost immediately after the Brown vs. Board of Education decision in order to protest school desegregation, not to honor confederat veterans. Contrast that with the state of Mississippi, who began flying the stars and bars again in 1898 on Confederate Memorial Day (that's in April, for all y'all who don't know). I applaud the state of Mississippi, and I hope their flag waves long and brave.

These PARTICULAR flags, however, aren't about heritage or history, they're about hatred, ignorance and mean-spiritedness. Ultimately, these particular flags are dishonoring the memories of our brave dead. They have more in common with Bull Connor than Robert E. Lee.

-- Nerd Rustler (nerdrustler@notanadventure.justa.job), June 06, 2000.

Great article. True take on the race issue.

Anyone who lives in the South and has their pulse on the real truth of the race issue knows that this man is right on. Especially with him being a black man.

While there are certainly race issues all over the country, they don't exist "just in the South". I once heard it said: "In the South, prejudice exists against the black race, but blacks are accepted on a person-to-person basis. In the North, they claim to be non-prejudiced against blacks as a race. They make up for it by being prejudiced on the person-to-person basis." Which is worse?

My family owned a tobacco processing company in Greenville, NC from 1927 through 1990. African-Americans made up the workforce, by and large, for all those years. I'll say, and dare anyone to challenge it: my grandfather, father, and uncle treated their workers, regardless of color, as well or better than any employer anywhere. Period. Paragraph.

Some of the older workers started passing away in the 1980's. Dad and Uncle Charlie would go to their funerals, in black funeral homes; get up and speak when asked, which was more often than not. Sent money to the widows on a monthly basis for years.

Some of the dearest friends I've ever had in my life were some of these workers for Greenville Tobacco Company. I attended those funerals too. I never saw "black", or "white", or "green", when talking to those guys. I saw "friend".

We used to have a river cottage on the Pamlico River. We'd have the whole family down there for a week or two every summer. A couple of old company workers would be down there to cook/help out/take us fishing/whatever. (At about $150-200/day, back in the 70's and 80's...yeah they were mistreated bigtime.)

A lot of times we'd go out at 7:00 in the morning, to go bass fishing; Dad, Uncle Charlie and me. Eugene Carr would be the boat navigator. When we got up the creek to where the good fishing was, he'd shut the motor off, and silently paddle the boat up and down the bullrushes, where the bass were, while we'd fish. We'd catch a slue of bass, bream, white perch, whatever, enough to feed everybody supper, and go on back to the cottage about 11:00 or noon.

But after lunch, many times, I'd ask Eugene, or Lewis, the other black fella, "Hey -- you guys wanna go fishing?" We'd jump in a boat, head up the creek, and I'd paddle THEM around while THEY fished for a while. That's how much I loved these guys. They were my *buddies*. Just as dear to my heart as anyone who's ever lived. I shed a tear or three at their funerals. Where Dad & Uncle Charlie spoke.


People who keep harping on the race issue in the South need to talk to some people who have *lived it* before they go drawing all their erudite conclusions.

The Flag of the United States of America waved over slave states for 85 years, from 1776 to 1861. The flag of the Confederacy waved over those same states for four years -- 1861 to 1865.

By present logic, we should ban the flag of the United States of America.

The flag of the Confederacy represents 11 states which felt strongly enough about many issues, not just slavery, to where they seceded from the USA. If you want to ban that flag, you might as well ask those 11 states to cease to exist; or at the very least, to erase their past histories.

I guess it's good that the legislature of the state of South Carolina voted to remove the Confederate flag from the top of their State House, and put it instead at the Confederate Memorial. But some say that's not enough. To those who say that's not enough, I say, "PUT A SOCK IN IT!"

-- Chicken Little (, June 06, 2000.

This guy's position is laughable. Is he SERIOUS? While I am not an Abraham Lincoln fan, and I could believe the part about the tariff (After all, Mr. Lincoln was an advocate of martial law), I cannot believe someone actually thinks the black person was treated better by the south. What planet is this guy living on. Did you ever hear of Rosa Parks? Jim Crow laws?

and this quote "if the southern man set a man free he gave them land and a home". Justify slavery? What the F***? No person should be denied their liberty in a country defined by liberty.

This joker must truly buy into the idea of "Compassionate Conservative". You know, George "I hear your pain, and I empathize, and I would really, truly like to do something about it, but as you know I really cannot at this time" Bush. That is what that quote above reminds me of-Aren't I truly compassionate if, when I decide to let you free, I give you a house and a home.


-- FutureShock (gray@matter.think), June 06, 2000.

I wouldn't go so far as banning Confederate flags, but I wouldn't want one flying over the state house either.

As far as this man's opinions on history go though, I would also ask the question "What planet is he on?" I'm with Bingo here. I can't fathom his take at all.

-- Buddy (, June 06, 2000.


At the risk of repeating myself, I'll say this:

The value of your opinions on this issue is directly proportional to how many years you have actually lived in the South, and have actually seen how things are here, with you own two eyes.

I.e. if you've never lived here, your opinion doesn't mean SQUAT. In real terms, that is.

(P.S. went through this same sort of argument when Hurricane Floyd occurred last fall -- all sorts of people on the original TB2k waxed eloquent on what was going on in eastern NC; as though they knew more about the subject than people such as myself, who were right here, dead in the middle of it, seeing it with their own two eyeballs)

-- Chicken Little (, June 06, 2000.

I haven't seen African-Americans treated differently in the North than the South. The South was certainly more blatant about their prejudices, and I confess that I expected colored water to flow from the fountain that said, "colored", but the North, although less blatant, still engaged in segregation and discrimination.

I've not studied history enough to know if the quotes by Lincoln are correct. It seems to me that the prejudices of BOTH the North and the South had/has a basis in the perceived financial welfare of the one issuing the prejudice. Southern "gentlemen" felt they could not achieve financial success without a slave workforce. The Northern "brethren" felt that blacks would compete for the jobs available.

-- Anita (, June 06, 2000.

A slightly different historical view:


-- fwiw (a@b.c), June 06, 2000.

The original article reminds me a bit of Gary North talking about Y2k.


-- Gregor (, June 06, 2000.

Gregor is scoring points. You sure you're new at this?

-- Bingo1 (, June 06, 2000.

I figured that one would generate a discussion. :)

First, on the tariffs thing: it's true. I don't know if H. K. has the percentages right, but before the war started, Lincoln and the leaders of the Confederacy met to discuss reconciliation. Slavery was *NOT* an issue in these meetings; Lincoln did, in fact, offer an amendment that would protect the institution in slave states in perpetuity. The sticking point was the tariff. Lincoln was unwilling to deal on that.

(Basically, it was the same old protectionism vs. free markets thing; the tariff helped Northern industrialists against cheap imports, but hurt Southern agricultural exports. The South was outvoted and felt that it had to secede to protect its interests, NOT just slavery.)

I frankly don't care that much about the Confederate flag; it's a non-issue with me. I just thought this story was interesting. (I am also convinced that the current furor over the flag is just election-year politics.)

BUT ... I *AM* interested in accurate history about the Late Rebellion, and the link provided by the poster above is the typical politically-correct, whitewashed Official Version.

Here are some interesting facts, chosen at random, that most people don't know:

1. Already mentioned: if the war had been about slavery, the South could have preserved that institution at ANY TIME before, say, 1863, by simply laying down its arms and rejoining the Union. Lincoln simply wanted to preserve the union, and in his own words: if that meant leaving the slaves in chains, "in chains they would have remained."

It was only when it become obvious that a long, drawn-out conflict was inevitable, and that France and Britain were at the brink of recognizing the Confederacy, that he issued the Emancipation Proclamation (to play on strong anti-slave interests in Europe) and made slavery the issue.

(This doesn't mean the South was pure as the driven snow by any means. Yes, the South DID want to preserve slavery as PART of its goal in secession. But re-read what I said above: if slavery had been the ONLY issue, the South could have preserved it at any time by simply rejoining the Union.)

2. The Cherokee nation (reluctantly) seceded along with the Southern States. See the link for their reasons; one was alarm at Lincoln's dictatorial style -- especially his suspension of the writ of Habeus Corpus.

(Incidentally, the Cherokees under General/Chief Stand Watie were also the last standing army to surrender, months after Lee and Johnston.)

3. Over 90,000 free blacks fought for the Confederacy.

4. The Emancipation Proclaimation ONLY freed slaves in "rebellious territories" (ie, in seceeded states). The slaves in the North remained in bondage until 1871, several years after the war.

5. The vast majority of the men who fought in the Confederate army had never owned a slave. They fought primarily against "Northern agression."

6. And while I'm on a roll: most of us nowdays don't realize just how close the South came to winning, in spite of severe disadvantages. As already mentioned, Britain and France were prepared to recognize the Confederacy, which would have ended the whole question. The Battle of Antietam (which gave Lincoln a narrow victory, and allowed him to issue the Emancipation Proclaimation to cool Confederate sympathy in Europe) was actually the key battle of the war, NOT Gettysburg.

7. If the South, by some miracle, had won the war during Sherman's March, General Sherman would have been hanged for war crimes. :)

Harry Turtledove has written a series of EXCELLENT alternate history novels based on the idea of the South having won; I highly recommend them.

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.

If you can't fathom his take on history, it is as he said, you've been lied to for so long; are you happy believing a lie? What this man said is accurate, and can be researched if you weren't so lazy. You sit at your computer and believe you are thinking, when all you're really doing is rearranging your own prejudices; in my book that makes you a hypocrite.

And what the hell does this have to do with Gary North? Idiot!

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

Nerd Rustler,

Yep. One reason why I'm abivalent on the Confederate Flag itself is NOT because of what it ORIGINALLY stood for, but because it has been co-opted in this century by many racist organizations.

That's unfortunate, too, because (as Edgerton points out), the flag originally had a deep symbolic meaning.

I'd trade a thousand Confederate flags for real freedom.

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.

Oops, let me correct that: over 60,000 free blacks fought for the confederacy. (6, not 9.)

But still, as a percentage of all fighting forces, comparable numbers fought for both South and North.

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.


This is pure revisionist history.

Hey, I can talk. While one great uncle [the number of greats will not be given for space reasons] led the Ohio 7th to the capture of Lexington/Frankfort another was a general in the Southern army [I descended from Laura]. The situation was very complicated, but the revisionism is nonsense.

The south lost and lost big. We need to accept that, just like you want folks to accept their errors about Y2K.

Best wishes,,,,

-- Z1X4Y7 (, June 06, 2000.

Not to Bragg, Stephen:

But it is a fact that North Carolina had more soldiers to fight in, and die in, that "War of Northern Aggression" than any other state, on either side.

Is it any wonder then, that NC presently has the largest military establishment anywhere on planet Earth -- them Tar Heels just don't play.

-- Chicken Little (, June 06, 2000.


The fact that I live in the conquered territories sortof proves that I at least acknowledge the surrender. :)

But answer this question: if slavery was the issue, why did Lincoln wait so long to issue the Emancipation Proclamation?

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.


But it is a fact that North Carolina had more soldiers to fight in, and die in, that "War of Northern Aggression" than any other state, on either side.

Yep. And Ft. Bragg is named for Braxton Bragg, who was one of the least capable commanders in the Confederate Army. (Not all of our Generals were Lees and Jacksons[g].)

Ironically, North Carolina and Virginia were two of the last states to secede, too. They only did so after it became obvious that Lincoln was planning to invade the South. At that time, a number of Northern Generals came South to fight as well, solely for the principle of State's Rights.

By the way: another piece of trivia. George Custer was one of the most arrogant, pompous and vain airheads to ever command soldiers. Turtledove NAILS him in the aforementioned alternate histories.

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.

Of course the South lost, Z1X. My 3-year-old nephew knows that. It's in pre-school history books.

Point being, losing a war should not cause a whole region to lose its historical identity.


(Pity on those who try. You Yankee theorists just don't quite realize exactly who you're messing with, evidently.)

-- Chicken Little (, June 06, 2000.


Understand your position. My family has one foot on each side of the conflict. You do know who Laura is? My great [whatever] grandmother [note last name is Jackson; man we have been here so long that I am related to a lot of people]. The point is trying to revise what happened serves no purpose.

Remembering the past is important. Dwelling upon it isn't. We are what we are; and better off for it. You may note that most of the people in Atlanta are Yankees.

Best wishes,,,,,

-- Z1X4Y7 (, June 06, 2000.

Having read enough of the idiocy spouted by this "Z" character, I can say beyond the shadow of a doubt that if that's the type of mentality teaching in our universities, it certainly explains why there are so many educated idiots running around; idiots teaching idiots.

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

Just so:

it certainly explains why there are so many educated idiots running around; idiots teaching idiots.

Brad is one of my former students. I recoginize his IP. How are you doing Brad?

Best wishes,,,,,


-- Z1X4Y7 (, June 06, 2000.

Nice try; no Brad here.

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

I was taught (NJ) the primary causes of the Civil War were economic policies. North & South were at loggerheads for years. Even cursory study of the 1850's would reveal this. Slavery as a do or die issue wasn't even close to reality.

My experiences living in NE North Carolina as an adult, as well as several summers spent in NE Georgia as a kid were eye-opening. Segregation in rural areas is alive & well. The aspect I didn't know about was that it is self-imposed. Blacks by & large socialize with blacks. Same with whites.

Case in point: I play a solid game of basketball. I played every day as a kid during the summers in Dalton, Georgia at the county recreation center. Blacks played with blacks, whites with whites. There was no crossing over - except with me. The blacks allowed me to play with them 'cause I had game. After that I wasn't welcome to play with the whites, nor would they socialize with me after getting nigger sweat on me. Lovely group of kids.

It was the same in NC as an adult. Whites I worked with thought I was nuts for going to the blacks-only playground for pickup games. It was mind-bending stupidity, handed down from ignorant parent to child, generation after generation.

To buy a drink in NC one joined a social club. The first time I went into a bar & grill in NC I didn't know this. I was told I could eat there but had to be a member to order a beer. They told me I had to be recommended for membership by a dues-paying member. Suffice to say I walked out & never returned.

After a few years in NC we decided to look for a house to purchase. It came to my attention there were white-only real estate agencies and neighborhoods which were not open to black families. Theopposite was true as well. It was nauseating. Local politics made it VERY difficult for blacks to secure proper permits for new businesses. This was the 1990's people.

My wife & I beat it the hell out of NC three years ago. Not all folks participated in this idiocy, of course. Social pressures made it very difficult to go against the grain for those with long family histories in the areas we lived.

I despise bigotry & will not tolerate those who practice it. I knew many in NJ who were just as slimy as those I was exposed to in the south. People basically suck.

Excellent topic Stephen.

-- Bingo1 (, June 06, 2000.

Just so:

I know that you are Brad. I am not this "Z" person. I have been on this forum since it started. You haven't. The one thing that I am ashamed of is that you, "Brad" lack the courage to use your real name and address. Even though by your own assessment you are an idiot, I would expect more from my former idiots.

Best wishes,,,,

-- Z1X4Y7 (, June 06, 2000.

Doesn't matter if you were here since Moses, you still know nothing of these matters, yet lamely attempt to obfuscate the issue; you're somewhat lower than whaleshit to me; again, had I been a student of yours, I would have dropped your sorry ass within the first two days.

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

The Civil War was not about slavery and Mr. Lincoln stated that quite clearly in a letter to editor Horace Greeley: Link

Executive Mansion,

Washington, August 22, 1862.

Hon. Horace Greeley:

Dear Sir.

I have just read yours of the 19th. addressed to myself through the New-York Tribune. If there be in it any statements, or assumptions of fact, which I may know to be erroneous, I do not, now and here, controvert them. If there be in it any inferences which I may believe to be falsely drawn, I do not now and here, argue against them. If there be perceptable [sic] in it an impatient and dictatorial tone, I waive it in deference to an old friend, whose heart I have always supposed to be right.

As to the policy I "seem to be pursuing" as you say, I have not meant to leave any one in doubt.

I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be "the Union as it was." If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views.

I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men everywhere could be free.


A. Lincoln.

-- DeeEmBee (, June 06, 2000.


I never have to set foot on southern soil to state that a minute of slavery is wrong-and anyone that tries to remotely justify it by saying they were treated "well" is an arrogant, pompus, worthless piece of white trash.

I guess we should have kept them niggers as our property cause, hell, they were treated better as slaves than now, right?

-- FutureShock (gray@matter.think), June 06, 2000.


To buy a drink in NC one joined a social club. The first time I went into a bar & grill in NC I didn't know this. I was told I could eat there but had to be a member to order a beer. They told me I had to be recommended for membership by a dues-paying member.

The problem in this specific case isn't racism, it's the liquor laws that vary from one county to the next. For example, in Hoke County (where I grew up), liquor by the drink wasn't permitted in any form, not even beer, but "brown-bagging" was: you brought your own alcohol, the restaurant could sell the "setups."

Even the consumption of beer on public property was proscribed, so ... if you wanted a Tall One with your buddies after work, you had to set up a "private club." It was a handy way to side-step the law, but you DID have to run it right (membership according to strict rules, etc.) or you were subject to be raided by the Law Dogs[g].

But this isn't necessarily done to discourage black membership. I'm not a fool; I'm sure some clubs are set up for that purpose, but sheesh, I'd love to know where you lived. I can assure you, all of NC isn't as bad as you describe it. You were just in the wrong part.

In my hometown of Raeford, NC, anyone who wanted to start a business was welcome to do so, so your experience there puzzles me, too. We have had dozens of black candidates for office over the years as well, and my father (chairman of the Elections Board at the time) has always made sure that they get a fair shake. Many of them have been elected and continue to be elected.

My mother's in an older, well-established Southern neighborhood (you know, big two- and three-story Southern-style frame houses, one after another[g]); a black military family moved in across the street from her some years ago. No one said a word and they were great neighbors.

And Hoke is anything but cosmopolitan; it's one the poorest counties in the state, with an oddly even mix: about 1/3 each of white, indian and black. Are there problems? Sure. Is there racism? Sure, but mostly among some of the older folks, and nothing like what you describe.

I do agree that this depends on how you were raised. Our black housekeeper/nanny, Eva, was like a second mother to me when I was growing up, and she loved us kids like we were her own. After desegratation, I attended a formerly all-black school for 7th and 8th grades, in a black neighborhood. I simply made some new friends and that was that. Big deal.

Forgive me if I point this one out, too, but ... during desegregation, there were no bus riots here. None. No rock-throwing, no racial slurs. Boston, just to name one, can't say that, now, can they? :)

(And I can't resist: during The War, WE didn't have draft riots and WE didn't lynch black folks like they did in New York City in 1863 ...)

I WILL tell you this: people who move into the South and who look down on us, consider themselves superior, consider us "bumpkins," or anything like that, generally DON'T get a very good reception (white OR black) -- from me, or anyone else. If you come to fit in, you'll fit in. If you come to Change Us Into Something Better, you're gonna be the square peg in the round hole. (You have been warned.[g])

I don't think that's the case with you; you don't sound like that, anyway. But if your neighbors ever got that impression -- right or wrong -- you were cold meat from that point on. :)

It's the "carpetbagger" thing.[g]

And I have to say this: where the rural South really shines is when something bad happens, like Hurricane Fran or Hurricane Floyd. That's when you'll see neighbors helping each other, risking their lives for each other, without any regard for race or any other distinction. If you were hurting, anyone who had help to give gave it, period.

THAT is my best memory of NC. (I wasn't there for Floyd, but I sure remember Fran; we got HAMMERED.)

That, and the good ol' Carolina-style pit-cooked barbeque, of course. Can't forget that. :)

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.

Proves ol' Z boy doesn't have much of a clue, eh? You want to believe his other bullshit, then? Then he says,

The one thing that I am ashamed of is that you, "Brad" lack the courage to use your real name and address."

Yeah, right; like your "name" is Z etc. What a profound ass!

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

Re bigotry:

Some of the most virulently bigoted people I've ever met came from places like South Boston and East LA. Conversely, some of the most gracious and liberal-minded folks I've ever come across were from cities like Richmond and Charleston.

-- DeeEmBee (, June 06, 2000.

And some of the most uneducated and stubbornly ignorant went by the name of "futureshock".

-- Just so (, June 06, 2000.

Stephen -

Similar to what happens when Californians move to the Pacific Northwest and act like they're oh-so-cosmopolitan. It's not a pretty sight...

-- DeeEmBee (, June 06, 2000.


That's not what Chicken Little was saying and you know it. I don't know of a single modern Southerner who wants slavery to be reinstituted, or who even considers it anything less than an unmitigated evil. (I shouldn't even have to say that.)

One of the great ironies of the Civil War is that slavery was dying even before Lincoln was elected. For one thing, the Black church was growing and white Southerners -- who, by nature, tended to be religious -- began to have an attack of conscience: if a man could sing hymns to, and worship, the same God as me, who was I to keep him in chains?

(Stonewall Jackson, a deeply religious man, wrestled with this himself. He taught a Sunday School to the blacks in his hometown in Virginia for many years before the war.)

There were practical pressures at work, too. The South's biggest trading partners -- Britain and France -- were wholly opposed to slavery, and had made it clear that, if they HAD recognized the Confederacy, one of the prices of that recognition would have been eventual manumission.

The South had its share of abolitionists, too -- and another irony is that many of the Generals who fought for the South in that war were themselves opposed to slavery (General Lee, just to name one, and A. P. Hill was an outright abolitionist).

So, even if the South had won the war, slavery wouldn't have survived beyond the 1800's, and I can make the argument that WE could have integrated these former slaves into our society more smoothly than did the Reconstructionists.

(That's one place where I disagree with Turtledove's portrayal of the South; he thinks we would have had a form of apartheid. I think the clear trend was toward freedom in general.)

There are some very good reasons why you might wish that the South had WON that war, because the very nature of our government changed permanently in the wake of it. The All Powerful Federal Government model is a direct legacy of the War Between The States.

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 06, 2000.


Thanks for that post (and the link). I couldn't remember where I'd seen that letter from Lincoln.

I didn't know you poor folks in the Pacific Northwest had to put up with carpetbaggers, too! :)

I didn't mean to imply that we wouldn't let the Square Pegs form their own clubs, either. We had lots of rich folks who retired from the cold Nawth to Pinehurst, NC, for the golf and climate. They set up a Theatah, donchaknow, and all sorts of stuff like that. Hey, that was cool.

In our turn, we ruined them utterly by turning them on to ACC basketball and pit-cooked barbeque ... not to mention Calabash-style seafood.

(That's the biggest thing I miss here in Alabama. In NC, for $10, you can get a HUGE plate of flounder, popcorn shrimp, scallops, deviled crab and oysters -- PLUS little beer-battered hushpuppies that melt in your mouth. [g])

-- Stephen M. Poole, CET (, June 07, 2000.

Lincoln was against slavery. Period. He was also a practical man. He knew that leaving slavery alone *where it already existed* would avoid a war. But he was also against the *expansion* of slavery, which the South was trying to accomplish. Lincoln believed the institution of slavery was doomed and did all he could to keep it from expanding and becoming permanent.

As for what the Civil War was about, the South seceded because they had lost control of the national government. Without control of the government they feared they would lose their "right" to "property" (slaves) and their way of life (aristocracy). If there had been no slavery there would have been no economic issues to fight a war over. No matter how you couch the Southern argument, the basic issue was slavery.

Unfortunately, I don't have enough time to expound further. I wish I could, because I believe that theories that the South was not fighting to preserve slavery and their aristocratic way of life are wrong.

I recommend the following books for a start if you want to explore this issue further:

Battle Cry of Freedom : The Civil War Era by James M. McPherson

The Civil War : A Narrative : Fort Sumter to Perryville, Fredericksburg to Meridian, Red River to Appomattox (3 Vol. Set) by Shelby Foote

-- Buddy (, June 07, 2000.

History belongs to the people who lived it. Funny thing about death, you aren't right or wrong, black, brown, yellow, red or white-not even man, woman or child. You're just dead.

Why can't we take our memorials as memorials? We remember not just the cause, but the people caught up in it-all the people: both sides, all perspectives.

Only the very young or very foolish believe that economics are eternal. Sacrifice, loss, love, life: that's forever. A body houses the soul just one time.

Memorials everywhere are designed to honor and mourn the dead and to jolt us into cherishing our living.

-- charlie (, June 08, 2000.

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