Saturday, December 11, 2010

Slave beatings and lynchings to follow ...

This is jaw-dropping astounding. Unless you are like me and believe that the Tea Party is nothing more than an extension of this.

South Carolina is about to celebrate the fact that that state seceded from union with the United States because it was about to have slavery removed from its very slave dependent economic structure.

Never mind the "States Rights" claim that the rebel confederacy tried to spin to the world. That was done because they realized that abolitionist countries would not support their original purpose. There was little chance of garnering support from England, an absolute necessity once war had erupted, if the "cause" upon which the agricultural south fastened its casus belli was in any way about maintaining slavery. The shift from demanding the right to continue slavery to a more acceptable "right to secede" for any reason was pure propaganda. And it was propaganda which has survived to this day with the overly-simplistic and fervent rhetoric spewing from the gapes of  the Tea Partiers.

The "south" can claim anything they want to. They've rewritten history to make themselves look like the victim of a war they brought upon themselves. The southern rice barons were instrumental in starting the Revolutionary War with England; their successors on southern plantations were responsible for fomenting the bloody conflict that would become the US Civil War. The oft-repeated claim of a "War of Northern Aggression" is nothing more than confederate bullshit repeated by today's Tea Party faction of a long-soured Republican Party.

Yes, Virginia, there is proof of what I say. On December 24th, 1860, it was spelled out in black and white in a document known as the Declaration of the Immediate Causes Which Induce and Justify the Secession of South Carolina from the Federal Union.  In that document the so-called "States Rights" which became the mantra of the southern effort was focused on a solitary item - the demand to be allowed to continue to enslave and treat as less-than-human, an entire population of people. It was all about slavery then and it is all about slavery now.

A geographical line has been drawn across the Union, and all the States north of that line have united in the election of a man to the high office of President of the United States, whose opinions and purposes are hostile to slavery. He is to be entrusted with the administration of the common Government, because he has declared that that "Government cannot endure permanently half slave, half free," and that the public mind must rest in the belief that slavery is in the course of ultimate extinction.
And it continues:

This sectional combination for the submersion of the Constitution, has been aided in some of the States by elevating to citizenship, persons who, by the supreme law of the land, are incapable of becoming citizens; and their votes have been used to inaugurate a new policy, hostile to the South, and destructive of its beliefs and safety. 

On the 4th day of March next, this party will take possession of the Government. It has announced that the South shall be excluded from the common territory, that the judicial tribunals shall be made sectional, and that a war must be waged against slavery until it shall cease throughout the United States. 

The guaranties of the Constitution will then no longer exist; the equal rights of the States will be lost. The slaveholding States will no longer have the power of self-government, or self-protection, and the Federal Government will have become their enemy. 

Sectional interest and animosity will deepen the irritation, and all hope of remedy is rendered vain, by the fact that public opinion at the North has invested a great political error with the sanction of more erroneous religious belief.
Make no mistake, there is a huge segment of that same successor population who are true believers in that document. Their forefathers feared the demise of slavery because they had inexorably linked the southern US economy to it. To lose it meant a loss of lifestyle and a reliance on a completely different economic model.

The Tea party is simply an extension of the whole fear and simmering hatred. They want their mint juleps back.

And they would go back to beating and lynching if they could get away with it.


CathiefromCanada said...

Dave Niewert has written quite a bit about this quite a bit at Orcinus. He says Lincoln was desperate not to start the War, but the Southern States not only demanded to keep their own slaves, but would not tolerate the "insult" of having new territories in the west be slave-free. The idea now that the "war of northern aggression" was not about slavery is just revisionist.

Ole said...

Also typical of the Tea Partiers is their belief that they have moral superiority through their religious beliefs, i.e. the Bible condones ownership of slaves:
"...[the North has invested a great political error with the sanction of more erroneous religious belief.]"

Niles said...

The SPLC (Southern Poverty Law Centre) is another good source of fisking slaver-backed rewriting of American history.

But you can't exclude the Know Nothings of the antebellum period of the US as a founding mentality either. The anti-immigration and anti-any.religion/culture.that.isn't.ours fervor going on in modern times smacked me (and of course many better historically aware people) as a belligerent resurgence of the attitudes in anglo-dominated North America threaded through the rest.

And... this was the period when Manifest Destiny was also excusing American government warfare against indigenous Peoples from the Trail of Tears to Wounded Knee - no matter what appeasement/insurrection the first peoples tried.

"Freed" resource land vs freeman immigrant labour vs slave labour vs wealth acquisition for those empowered as the 'right' people. No recipe for trouble there.

It's morbidly amusing that Manifest Destiny itself is still being fractured and re-interpreted by the 'masters' infighting faster than you can say "Chosen People".

This doesn't excuse Canada's governmental history, but like most things, Canada's dominant society seems to have preferred the 'oubliette' method of being nasty. Find a nice compartment for something inconvenient and then 'forget' to follow through on any actual positives, with the certainty that the inconvenience can be outwaited until it stops making noise.

I guess that's the passive in passive-aggressive.

Holly Stick said...

HNN has some relevant comments in an article relating entrenched slavery to our entrenched use of fossil fuels:

HNN also links to this book ad (excuse the Amazon link):