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December 10, 2018, 03:56:50 AM
611463 Posts in 47205 Topics by 6295 Members
Latest Member: WendiWhiti Forum  |  Movies  |  Good Movies  |  12 YEARS A SLAVE (2013) « previous next »
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Author Topic: 12 YEARS A SLAVE (2013)  (Read 2632 times)
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« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2014, 05:19:06 PM »

That coincides with what I've said all along: it was only the war that gave Lincoln a chance to strike against slavery.
He said in his first inaugural that he had no constitutional power to touch slavery in the states where it already existed,
even if he were inclined to do so.  That being said, everything I have ever read of his writings shows that he loathed
slavery on a visceral level.  But what he could not do under his Presidential authority, he COULD do under the war powers
granted him by the Constitution.  Emancipation was a military blow to the states that were in rebellion, and he was glad
to take that chance.  However, if ALL he wanted to do was weaken the Confederacy militarily by abolishing slavery, he
would not have taken the enormous risk of pushing the 13th Amendment through early in 1865.  Lincoln was afraid that
a post-war court case might declare emancipation unconstitutional and return 4 million people he had freed to bondage,
with all the upheaval and horror that might result from that.  His determination to do away with slavery forever, BEFORE
the war ended and the Courts could attack the Proclamation, shows where his heart was all along.

As for your point, Lester - the North and South had repeatedly compromised over the tariff before the war, and would do
so again after the war.  While it was an ongoing sore point, it was NOT a casus belli the way the expansion of slavery into
the Federal territories was.

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« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2014, 06:07:06 PM »


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« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2014, 06:10:00 PM »

Average American 1850: "Yes, it bothers my conscience to think of all the things I buy that can be traced back to slave labor, but what can I personally do about it?"

Average American 2014: "Yes, it bothers my conscience to think of all the things I buy that can be traced back to child labor and sweatshops all across the Third World, but what can I personally do about it?"

Average plantation owner 1850: "I'm not breaking any laws or even violating what it says in the Bible."

Average CEO of a big manufacturing company 2014: "I'm not breaking any laws, either here or overseas."

Is the bondage of slavery the same thing as a person freely choosing to work in a sweatshop? No, but each model reveals the hypocrisy and unavoidable complicity of millions in "the way things are." As we feel today about our own economic model, I think that's how the average person felt then about his. Most Americans of the past were neither frantically pro or anti slavery, they just lived daily life in a society in which things were the way they were and had been for a long time.

The number of Americans who owned slaves was small in proportion to the population as a whole, just as today only a small number of Americans own the firms that make deals that see children working in dangerous and arguably immoral conditions making the products we snap up every day without a thought as to how they came to be there. I seriously doubt the CEOs whose companies own the factories in countries with lax labor regulations go to bed at night considering themselves bad people, and I doubt slave owners sat around reviling themselves.

But you know, it's a parlor game to second guess slavery from long ago, to make movies about it that leave you appalled or self-righteous or angry, but why isn't there more of a debate about the fact that slavery is alive and well today, this very minute, across parts of the Islamic world? Rather than worry about the conduct of people dead 150 years, why not focus more on freeing slaves in Sudan? Seems a more constructive use of time.

Oh, but what can I do about it? Exactly...
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 06:16:45 PM by ER » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2014, 06:25:08 PM »

A different analogy might be to South American day laborers. They had tried and white people couldn't take the manual labor in the sun. Black people should have been able to immigrate freely to America and been paid for their labor. The world just wasn't evolved to the point where the white people could accept that. Human beings did a rather poor job of working it out: hundreds of thousands, virtually none of whom had anything to do with the slave trade, were killed.

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« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2014, 05:32:21 AM »

I dont see an argument here-who was wrong-who was right-
It was ALL WRONG-these folks considered themselves Christians-but what they did was evil.
North,South,it shoulda never happened-except lazy rich f**kers didnt want to do real work-HAVE THE n****rS DO IT!
(Kinda like the rich nowadays...which amazes me with Republicans and immigration-you would think they would want the Mexicans in-but I guess there sense of racism over rides there worry about who is gonna do the field work or cut their lawns.  Lookingup)

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