Thursday, June 4, 2015

Secession -- States' Rights I

Let's define our terms: 

Secession = noun - Latin: Secessio
The act of withdrawing, particularly from fellowship and communion.
The act of departing; departure. 

Secede = Verb intransitive - Latin: Secedo; se, from, and cedo, to move. Se is an inseparable preposition or prefix in Latin, but denoting departure or separation.
To withdraw from fellowship, communion or association; to separate one's self; 

Covenant = noun - Latin: convenio, con and venio, to come. Literally, a coming together; a meeting or agreement of minds.
A mutual consent of agreement of two or more persons, to do or to forbear some act or thing; a contract; stipulation. A covenant is created by deed in writing, sealed and executed; or it may be implied in the contract. 
= verb intransitive - To enter into a formal agreement; to stipulate; to bind one's self by contract.
= verb transitive - To grant or promise by covenant.

States' Rights = In American political discourse, States' Rights refers to political powers reserved for the U.S. state governments according to the United States Constitution, reflecting especially the enumerated powers of Congress and the Tenth Amendment.  The enumerated powers that are listed in the Constitution include exclusive federal powers, as well as concurrent powers that are shared with the states, and all of those powers are contrast with the reserved powers - also called States' Rights - that only the states possess. 

 The question of who held ultimate political power over the people by law -- if the states or the national government -- was contested by the Federalists and Anti-federalists since the founding of our nation and this long, drawn-out quarrel played a part in the Civil War.  States' Rights didn't just randomly occur to the Southern states and secession wasn't invented by them -- States' rights and the right to secede had been there from the start! After all didn't the United States exercise States' Rights in order to secede from the tyranny of England? So why couldn't the states do the same?
Well, before we answer that question it is necessary to go back and look deeper into States' Rights, covenants and secession and the role they played in the beginning of our nation.
As I stated before, the fact that the USA first declared independence from England shows that people believed in the rights of the people- the states- to break away from a tyrannical government.  But for the sake of getting to the truth of the matter, let us ask: Did the states claim the right to secede from the central government if deemed necessary? Did the states have the right to nullify laws that considered unconstitutional? Ultimately, were the states right in asserting their rights to secession and nullification? 

The Declaration clearly states: "When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.  We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on principles and organizing its powers in such from, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.  Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes;  and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.  But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.......We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved, and that as Free and Independent States, they have full power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish commerce, and do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do.  And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor."

Wow! Thats pretty self explanatory! We see that the founding fathers clearly delineated the fact that seceding from a despotic government is not only our right, but our duty. Furthermore, they state repeatedly that the colonies were free and independent states - - not "an independent state" but INDEPENDENT STATES! 
When the Constitution came into effect in 1789 it spelled out the view of the states over who held the ultimate political power over them: "Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled."  It was an accepted, codified fact that the States retained their sovereignty and power, except those powers that they covenanted to give to the Federal Government AND the government was not delegated the authority to coerce any of the States to remain in a forced union. Therefore, we can conclude that the taking up of arms by the North to force the South to remain in the union was completely unconstitutional and that the Southern states were merely exercising the sovereign rights reserved by them as Free and Independent States.


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The War Between the States--Part 1: Causes of the War

Nationalism and Regionalism

For the first years of it's life America wasn't thought of in terms of one large nation, headed by a centralized government.  We began as separate colonies with different and diverse peoples, interests and land.  The sense of regionalism was strong and, though we bonded together as a nation, the strong feelings of independence, individualism and localism remained a part of the majority of Americans.  One of the reasons the USA was so successful was the allowance for differences within a single confederated goal of preserving unity, with diversity.  A benefit of this attitude was the "American Dream"--for lack of a better word--that you could become, be or do anything you set your mind to, as opposed to the "enlightened" communistic ideas running through Europe--in which no one was better than anyone else and they all served the state and large government.  In essence we combined the ambition and pioneering spirit of the West, the industrial power of the North and the Conservatism and traditionalism of the South to create a diverse land of opportunity.  However, not everyone was in favor of this mindset.  At the time of the American War for Independence people were divided into two main factions--Federalists and Anti-Federalists.  The Federalists wanted a larger central government while the Anti-Federalists wanted to preserve the sovereignty of the states and only allow the federal government only the specific powers signed over to it by the states.  Both groups would fight for dominance for the first 35-40 years of the this nation and these quarrels would come to a climax in the Civil War which would shake our beautiful land to its very core.  So how did this issue reach a boiling point?  Well first we must see the differences of each section of the USA at the time and it will give us more insight into the true causes behind the Civil War.

The North

The North was as diverse as any other part of the nation the difference being in the industrial thinking that permeated it.  Everyone was eager to provide supplies and manpower to expand commerce and industry and this mindset led to a highly industrialized, highly productive attitude.  Everyone thought in terms of what they could contribute to advance the country to greater accomplishments and comfort.  This led to a bustling energy and activity not as common in other areas of the country.  The downside of this progressive attitude was the shifting of faith from God to man.  Man was going to build his own future.  Man was going to improve things through his own strength.  Anything requiring time and patience was overlooked as too tedious and faith/religion was looked down on as an old-fashioned concept not fitted for the modern, fast-paced North. 

The South

The South was as different in mindset as... well as North is from South! The South more laid back and relaxed. taking time to notice those small, important things in life.  Now this definitely doesn't mean that Southerners were lazy--simply that they were agrarian in nature, as opposed to progressive.  Not only was the South agricultural--providing up to 70% of the nations food supplies--but agrarian meant something more.  They were lovers of the land and felt that they're entire lives, destiny and future was tied up in the land.  Because of this ideology Southerners were more relationship based, and not so focused on experiences.  They were content to remain at home, put roots in the land and raise their families to do the same.  They fostered heritage, culture, and relationships and considered their past to be vital to their future.  Their heritage, along with their faith, is what shaped the South and made it pretty much the exact opposite of the North in every sense.  Although it is clear that not every Southerner was a Christian, faith and christianity held much greater importance and value in the South-- Morals and standards were higher and the acknowledgment that God was supremely in control was pretty much universally accepted in the South.  

The West

The third main section of the states, which we often forget to mention, is the western part of the US.  Oh the West! The West took the best traits of both North and South and combined them to forge the ambitious, happy-go-lucky, care-free attitude of the Western pioneers.  They were not as independent, economy wise, as the North and South--depending on both for materials, food and manufactured goods-- but they made their own way in a rough environment which helped create a sense of self-sufficiency that made the westerners a fiercely independent individual.  Faith was part of their life but wasn't of primary importance or rigorously followed as in the South--churches were few and often far away--but it still held value to them.  The West was the combination of ambitious progressives and calm relationship-building people.  


Now that we know that each region of the US was completely different in their pursuits, beliefs, ideology and worldview--in contrast to the myth propagated, that North, South and West were alike in most ways--it is crucial to understand the concept of nationalism and the role it played in leading the US to the Civil War.  John J. Dwyer defines nationalism as: "A modern ideology that emerged in the 19th century.  In contrast to national pride or patriotism, nationalism operates on the premise of a centralized state,  a politically controlled economy, and a synthesized and amalgamated culture.  Where the patriot says 'I love my country,' that nationalist says 'my country is better than yours.' "
The ideology of nationalism sprang up through the enlightenment and rationalism and my study of these two philosophies has been enlightening on how dark they actually were.  In all points the enlightenment--which should more appropriately be called the "endarkenment"-- collided with a biblical worldview.  Man began to deny God's authority and law and turned to his own reasoning and feelings.  Man set himself up as the rule of what was right and wrong and therefore, in the words of Judges 21:25b "every man did what was right in his own sight."  In such a society law is subject to the whims of people and justice is virtually non-existent.  Anyone can take control if he thinks he's right and he employs any means he thinks good to achieve his ends.  This ideology exposes a nation to tyranny, anarchy, socialism and communism.  This enlightenment led to nationalism, which in turn led to a push for large-centralized government--a government that "takes care" of you--and egalitarianism.  Egalitarianism is an interesting concept that sounds really good, but once you begin to dig deeper into it the full extent of what it really means sinks in.  Quoting from John J. Dwyer, he defines egalitarianism as:  "The doctrine of equal political, economic and legal rights for all citizens.  A distinguishing characteristic is that is seeks to force equality upon everyone in every sphere of life."  Wow! equal rights, equal positions and equal incomes--sounds great, right?   Well the reality is that God created us all in His image with functioning mind, body and soul.  He gives us abilities--diverse abilities--but the fact of the matter is that if we don't put forth an effort to develop these abilities and excel we will never be equal to those who do make that effort.  If a diligent man accumulates wealth it is due to his hard work and perseverance and the lazy oaf who wants everything handed to him has absolutely no right to demand equality with, or the rights of the hard working.  Neither can we punish the hard worker for having more money--and consequently, more opportunities and benefits-- than the.  It is his hard earned right and we cannot punish one person for succeeding because others are too slothful to get up and work to advance themselves. 
God created authority and set people over others--this is the only way order can reign and "complete equality" throws order out the window.  For example a business cannot function on complete equality-- there would be total chaos with every man demanding his/her rights.  A well run business requires leaders and executives who have more power and authority than the worker--therefore they are not "equal" in the sense that the workers are under the authority of the leaders and must submit to they're rules and regulations whether they like them or not.  Another truth about equality is that when everyone is "equal"or has equal rights-- then nobody does.  An "equal rights" situation leaves the door open for anarchy, tyranny and subjugation--after all everyone has the "equal right" to claim power.  Inevitably this leads to communism and where there is communism the only equality people have is that everyone is equally miserable.  We've seen this throughout history in Germany, Russia and Cuba--to name a few-- yet we seem to forget these examples and America is following these "enlightened" trends at break-neck speed.  These ideologies were the back drop of the Civil War and we rarely view the events of the war in light of these concepts--and yet they are SO crucial to understanding the truth of the war and the ideas that motivated each side.  In essence the Civil War was a battle of worldview.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


Well, I realized yesterday that I have posted all of my reports from my Civil War study! Truth is the thought of quitting this blog makes me sad soo I've decided to start a new series of Civil war reports, this time based on the book "The War Between the States" by John J. Dwyer.  I am just starting this book so it may take a little time to get my thoughts together and down on paper but I am definitely going to keep this blog up and running as I think it is important to share the truth as much as possible.  So come on back to hear more about America's Un-Civil War!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Slavery in Fact and Fiction

Slavery, an institution wrapped in controversy and political agendas.  The word slavery automatically brings to mind the slave issues of the "Civil War” and the racial animosity that exists in America between the blacks and whites.  However, as we all should know, slavery is not something that was instituted by us Southerners in order to simply take advantage of blacks.  From the earliest times in history we see slavery as a very common occurrence.  Though it definitely has many moral and social flaws and the trading of human lives is not justifiable as  means of profit, it is still important to know and understand the truths about slavery, as opposed to how it is commonly depicted in books, movies and even politically correct history.  Thought there have been definitely been cruel and tyrannical slave masters, that is not the stereotype. Most slave owners through history were kind, benevolent and even affectionate towards their slaves.  In Roman times slaves had as many legal rights as their owners and many were given opportunities to gain their freedom.  We also see that slavery and race did not have a high correlation, in fact there have been more white slaves in the course of history than there have been black slaves.  So what is the truth behind slavery in America? 

The Slave Trade and Early American Slavery

Due to the high demand for sugar, both the Spaniards and the Portuguese were importing African slaves to the Caribbean and Brazils early as 1503.  A growing demand for tobacco and cotton would eventually drive the demand for black slaves in North America.  Actual slave trading in North America began in 1637 in the Massachusetts Bay Colony when they sold Indian POW’s to other Indian tribes and the the labor hungry West Indies.  Having acquired a taste for easy money, Massachusetts set out to build a fleet and in 1638 the first American slave ship, The Desire, was commissioned and brought its first load of human cargo from Africa.  The market was extremely good and the slave trade in America grew by leaps and bounds.  Between 1755 and 1776 over 23,000 slaves were brought to Massachusetts and from there sold.  However, only about 6% of all African slaves ended up in North America, as most were sent to Brazil, Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Central America and other places around the Caribbean.  Rhode Island, Connecticut and New York soon joined Massachusetts in the trade and it is interesting to note that all American slave ships were from New England (well what do you know, that just happens to be in the North) and that, even after the constitutional ban on the slave trade in 1808, New Englanders continued to make an immense profit off the trade until 1860.  All the wealth they had acquired helped the North develop its industrial base.  Now, because the climate in the North was not suitable for agriculture, the northerners began to emancipate their slaves, but most found it more profitable to sell them to the South before they could be emancipated. Thus they got rid of their slaves but still made a great profit off of them.  Now, up until around 1655 most farm labor in the South was performed by English indentured servants who worked for a specific amount of time (usually 7 years) and then were set free and given land of their own.  Whereas, previously the black slave population had only been 3% of the entire Southern population it soon grew to 40%.  Alarmed at this sudden growth, and feeling that they would soon be outnumbered by blacks, southerners begged the king to stop the slave trafficking in the South (it is also important to note that only 25% of Southern families had slaves)  and when he would not listen, Virginia declared her independence from Britain in 1776, and in 1778 outlawed the slave trade.  Nonetheless, after Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin and cotton became the main export and source of income in the South, as much as Southerners had grown against the slave trade and slavery in general, they realized that ending it too quickly would be too hard financially for the South.  In 1860 the South was the richest section of the country due to their agricultural exports and slave labor was the main force of the Southern economy.  To free the slaves all at once would have meant economic disaster to the Southern states.

Southern Slavery as it Really Was

Under the Federal Writer’s Project, President Roosevelt commissioned journalists to interview former slaves on how things had been during the slave years, the war and the reconstruction.  These interviews were published under the title of the slave narratives.  What was most amazing about these narratives is that 86% of the slaves had nothing but good to say about their masters and only 5% had only negative comments.  Many ex-slaves said they wished the old days were back and the yankees had left them alone.  They stated that while they had been slaves they had had shelter, food, clothing, medical care and everything else that was necessary.  In fact, living conditions of Southern slaves were better than most white factory workers in the North.  Studying the statistics there wasn’t an immense profit individually in owning slaves and eventually it would have died out, but most former slaves stated they were better off and happier with their masters, before the war.

The Matchless Devotion of Black Confederates

Though it is not often mentioned there were at least 50,000 and as many as 100,000 African slaves AND freedmen who gallantly fought in the confederate army alongside their masters.  Many, if not most, blacks were faithful to their masters and had strong Southern sympathies and were willing to die fighting the Union invaders who were supposedly trying to “free” them.  

Time on the Cross 

Not only is it very evident that most masters took good care of their slaves providing for their physical needs we also see that they were sincerely interested in the spiritual needs of their slaves and took time to teach them the Holy Bible and have them attend church.  Also, many masters taught their slaves reading and writing and basic schooling.  Though we do not wish to encourage slavery in any way and are extremely glad that it has been abolished in the US we must see that it was not the cruel, harsh, racial issue that politically correct history portrays it to be.  There were cruel and harsh masters who committed wicked deeds against they’re slaves, but they were not the norm and we should not base our views on the exceptions to the rule.  Also, its necessary to admit that there were also fuel, vindictive slaves who committed heinous acts against their owners.  If there is ever to be racial harmony in America we must learn the truths behind slavery and the truths of the Civil War and the truth of our own Southern history.

Saturday, February 21, 2015


By the end of the war the South was as devastated as any nation in the history of war .  Total war had been inflicted on the “rebels” leaving the South with no means of resistance, shelter or food and with 1 out of every 4 of the male population dead and their families demoralized.  The reconstruction was an extension of the total war through political means. Through the Northern press, radical abolitionists and republicans had presented the South as a “brutal, backward, racist” society and had fanned the flames of animosity between North and South.  President Lincoln, however, was in favor of a peaceful reunion “with malice toward none; with charity for all…” but after his assassination, the ardent hatred and desire for vengeance on the South sprang up with renewed passion.  The ultimate goal of the radical republican party was complete governmental dominance and the suffering, defeated South was the perfect stage for acting out their plans.  The Southern states should be humiliated and subjugated, then remade into the mold of the Northern states, completely controlled and run by radicals.  Though Civil rights played a part in the thinking of the republicans, the main role of former slaves was to insure republican political dominance and prevent any political resistance.  The South would also be open to economic exploitation and rule by Northern fortune hunters.  And so, using Union war casualties and Civil rights issues ( Many of which were extremely exaggerated, fabricated, and even incited and were contrary to the reports of General Grant) over the veto of President Johnson, the Reconstruction Act was passed and the stage was set for the subjugating of the already defeated, yet unconquered South.

Union  League Terrorism

The Union League AKA The Loyal League was a precedent of the Ku Klux Klan and exceeded them in numbers, violence, bullying, and murders.  Though most people have heard of the KKK, very few know of the Union League of America, due to the politically correct history of today.  After all, the government doesn’t wantAmerican citizens to know of the atrocities, political corruptions, despotism and violence perpetrated by one of its own federal agencies.  So how did the Union League start?  Due to pro-state rights democrats making great political gains in 6 Northern states, the republicans feared that Union war policies and efforts would be threatened, and so to prevent this, Union Clubs were formed in almost every town to support the war, troops, and the republican party.  Thus the Union League of America was formed.  As the war drew to an end Union Leagues were formed by Union loyalists in Southern states.  This provided a perfect doorway for the radicals into the Southern states and their governments.  The initial goal was to register ex-slaves to vote and to make sure they voted republican.  After a while most loyalist whites dropped out and so the League was composed almost entirely of former slaves and black soldiers of the Union army, except for the politicians and federal officers who formed the leadership.  The radical republicans had realized that if the South came back into the Union with democrat congressmen they would lose the political control that they had enjoyed since the 1860 election. President Johnson, a former democrat sympathetic to states rights and an advocate of President Lincoln’s lenient re-union plan, however, was an obstacle so they found every means, no matter how illegitimate, to circumvent and thwart him and fulfill their power hungry schemes.  Their goal was to punish and humiliate the South, then dominate it and their key for this was the black vote through the Union League.  The Reconstruction Act disenfranchised Confederate veterans, thus eliminating 85% of the white vote.  Under the military rule, the Southern states were left to the depredations of the Union League who burned, pillaged, murdered and raped freely with no retribution for their crimes and no justice or legal recourse for the white Southern civilians.  As Union League depredations increased the KKK began also to attack unionists and commit violence against them.  But the initial purpose of the Klan was to protect southerners, both black and white.  The Union League targeted Southern whites- for being Southern- and many blacks for being faithful to their former owners and for having democratic sympathies.  The numerous beatings, torturings, and lynchings of the Union League against Southern blacks are astonishing.  After a long bloody war to supposedly free and liberate the poor slaves from their “barbaric, cruel masters”  the treatment of blacks by Northerners is truly heinous.  Now by the time of elections many Union Leaguers couldn’t stand the despicable actions of the League and, despite threats of hanging, voted democrat and so the Union League and the radical Carpet Baggers were voted out and the Union League disappeared.  But the dangerous seed of mistrust and hate had been planted between whites and blacks.  

Plundering the South

The war had left the South devastated economically, socially and agriculturally, and with 2/3 of the male population either dead or seriously crippled.  Ruin, poverty and desolation prevailed in the Southern states.  The Northern fortune hunters took every advantage of these conditions to exploit the south and to get rich quick.  One asset the South still had despite the destruction was 5 Million bales of Cotton.  In order to sell the cotton the owners had to pay exorbitant taxes and fees, and often times, bribes.  Of course, if the cotton had been raised with slave labor it was subject to an extra 25% tax.  The North confiscated 3 million bales on grounds that the owners had previously sold cotton to the Confederate government.  All the high tariffs policies, which had sparked the “Civil War” in 1860-1861, were instituted and kept in place 'till 1906.  Property taxes were so high that many Southern property owners were forced to sell their land at distressed prices.  Ultimately, the Reconstruction did not reconstruct the South but further destroyed it and allowed its economic recovery, of which it has only in recent years been able to recover.  

The Rise of The Ku Klux Klan

The Ku Klux Klan began on Christmas eve of 1865 in the town of Pulaski, Tennessee.  6 young Confederate veterans decided to have some fun and lift the spirits of the town.  They decided to form a secret club with secret codes, costumes, rituals and names.  Using the Greek word for circle, kuklos, they came up with the Ku Klux then added Klan since all of them were of Scotch/Irish descent.  Dressing up in bed sheets they rode into town the next week to introduce themselves and their club and to serenade sweethearts and families.  It was a roaring success. However the former slaves though they had seen ghosts of dead Confederate soldiers and were very frightened.  Realizing the psychological power they possessed, the 6 veterans decided to use their new club to defend poor Southerners against the depredations of carpetbaggers and the Union League.  The admittance rules were very strict and required a member to have good character, principles and reliability.  Chivalry, patriotism and respect for the Constitution and legitimate laws were emphasized.  Members swore to protect and defend the helpless, weak and defenseless, to abstain from alcohol and to never betray other klansmen.  From Pulaski the Klan spread to Athens, Alabama, and continued to spread and soon expanded from protecting the helpless and racketeering the US Treasury agents to guerrilla warfare against the Union League.  The Klan was getting so large that the 6 founders decided to get a national Klan leader.  They chose distinguished Confederate cavalry officer, Nathan Beelford Forrest.  However, as the Klan continued to grow it also began to face a serious control problem.

The Invisible Empire: A response to Federal Tyranny

As the KKK grew the Union League found a convenient way to shift the blame of atrocities committed by them to the Klan by having their marauders masquerade in bed sheet costumes.  The radical government encouraged this as the radical propaganda was invaluable to further their purposes and to keep the Northerners incited against the South  It was difficult to refute these slanders since Klan members took seriously their oath never to reveal their Klan membership or the names of other Klan members.  Still many former Confederate soldiers, officers and even General are believed to have been at the head of the KKK and to have managed its activities.  

The Klan battles against Reconstruction

The Klan"s presence helped reduce Union League atrocities, but as the Klan grew its atrocities grew as well.  Many crimes attributed to the Klan were the product of Klan imitations such as the White League, The White Brotherhood and The Knights of the White Camellia or by the Union League itself.  Still, there was a growing amount of violations of discipline and principle in the Klan.  Due to this, an order was issued in 1861 by General Forrest ordering: “that the mask and costumes of the order be entirely abolished and destroyed.”  However, it was clearly stated that “this is not to be understood to dissolve the Order (klan)” so the KKK continued to battle against the reconstruction until the Union League was defeated.

The Klan Intimidates and Defeats the League

The Klans principle objectives were: 1-To protect the defenseless South from injustice at the hands of the Union League, 2-To protect cotton farmers from swindlers and racketeering Us treasury agents, and 3-To ultimately eradicate the corrupt radical republicanism from the South.  Essentially, the Klan helped these ends.  In 1876, in order to break  an electoral impasse, republican Rutherford B Hayes agreed to remove all federal troops from the South and consequently the radical republicans and the carpetbagger government fell in 1877.  The radicals had completely failed in their purpose as the south was as completely democratic and conservative as ever and the radicals were completely voted out of power.  However, the radicals had succeed in causing a great racial mistrust between Southern whites and blacks which has not been completely eradicated to this day.  Due to the tortures and harassment the Southern whites had suffered at the hands of blacks in the Union League, white animosity grew and caused them to prevent blacks from gaining political powers or to participate in government.  So, though the Union League was ultimately defeated by the invisible empire of the KKK, the damaged racial relations caused by the Union League policies still linger.  

The Role of the Klan in Defeating Corrupted Reconstruction

Besides racial animosity, the reconstruction fanned regional mistrust between North and South and widely accepted misconceptions of the South and Southerners in general.  As General Gordon aptly stated: “No people in the history of the world have been so misunderstood, so misjudged, and so cruelly maligned as the people of the South.”  Gordon, a Klan leader, was crucial in the redemption of the South, having negotiated with Rutherford B. Hayes for the removal of federal troops from Southern states.  Gordon was also willing to assist Wade Hampton with Klan support if the radicals tried to prevent his election as governor of South Carolina by force.  Wade Hampton’s inauguration as governor was an immense victory for the South and a big step towards redeeming her from the tyranny of the reconstruction.  Having accomplished its purpose, the Ku Klux Klan was officially disbanded in September of 1877 and thus the curtain fell on the 17 darkest years in Southern history.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Illegitimate Passage of the Fourteenth Amendment

The Fourteenth amendment is a perfect example of radical republican despotism, legislative manipulation, shameful coercion, blatant dishonesty, and above all a burning desire to exact vengeance on an already defeated South, and not only conquer her but to humiliate and crush her.  There are so many constitutional and legislative irregularities in the 14th amendment that its legitimacy is extremely doubtful.  However, let us examine this amendment more closely.  The 14th Amendment is composed of 5 main parts: The 1st defines who is a citizen.  This was to “prevent" the South from implementing “black codes” to limit the rights of ex-slaves.  Nonetheless, it is interesting to note that the Northern states of Indiana, Illinois, Oregon, Kansas, Missouri, Michigan, Connecticut, Minnesota and Wisconsin all had very severe black codes.  Section 2 eliminated the 3/5 rule for slaves in legislative representation.  The 3rd denied public office to anyone who had supported the Confederacy and therefore prevented any “Southern states rights” feelings from being encouraged and left the Southern states governments in the hands of Northerners and freed slaves.  section 4 required all citizens to pay for the US debt incurred during and after the war.  And lastly, section 5 gave congress the power to enforce the previous 4 sections.  In order to pass this amendment the radical northerners voted not toe seat the 22 senators and 58 representatives from the 11 Confederate states and were thus able to have a majority vote in favor.  After passing the Senate (even thought they were missing one vote to have the 2/3 necessary to pass), the amendment bypassed President Johnson (who was against the amendment) and was sent directly to the states for ratification.  10 of the 11 Southern states rejected the amendment, which should have killed it.  However, the radicals had another plan to enforce their amendment and that the same time strike a blow to the the Southern states.  On March 2, 1867, a Reconstruction Act was passed (over the veto of President Johnson) which revoked the legal status of the 10 Southern states and placed them under military control (though they were legal enough to ratify the 13th amendment, abolishing slavery).  In essence, after a long bloody war to “save the Union” the radical republicans kicked out the South and took complete control over them.  The only way any Southern states would be re-admitted into the Union was by acceptance of the 14th amendment.  6 states did so and thus the amendment passed but instead of a free Union it was now a coerced Union brought forth through an unconstitutional, fraudulent amendment.   

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Unions Total War Policy

First, it is important to understand the concept of a just war policy vs. a total war policy.  A just war has 3 basic requirements: 1-A just cause, 2-A just conduct and 3-A just means in its prosecution.  Therefore, a just war requires discrimination between combatants and noncombatants, that military means and and action be in proportion to the threat, that personal property and livelihoods of noncombatants be respected, etc. etc. etc.  A total war policy requires only: 1-Any cause (or even no cause), 2-Any conduct and 3-Any means in its prosecution.  Total war doesn’t discern between combatants and civilians, but wages a ruthless destruction against all - women, children and the elderly, destroying their livelihoods, means of support and source of income, leaving all to starve and suffer.  general William T. Sherman summed up the Union’s policy very well, “There is a class of people, men, women and children, who must be killed or banished before you can hope for peace and order.”  Confederate forces, with only a very few exceptions, followed a just war policy whilst the North launched a total war campaign against the South which left it agriculturally, economically, and socially devestated. 

Total War Policy in Missouri

Missouri was occupied by Northern forces before secessionist sentiment could be marshaled into the state legislature but there was a very strong Southern sympathy in Missouri and a large number of sympathizers engaged in partisan warfare.  These soldiers were treated as outlaws by Union forces and their families, as well as other civilians, were cruelly mistreated.  These tactics led to vengeance raids on the Northerners which led to bloody retaliation massacres against civilians. 

The Palmyra Massacre

On september 12th, 1862, Col. Joseph Porter, commander of a Missouri Confederate cavalry unit, raided Palmyra, MO, to rescue 45 Confederate prisoners.  Col.Porter took Col.Andrew Allsman, a Union informant, prisoner but released him within a few days.  However, Allsman disappeared on the road back.  The Union commander in the area, John Moneil, posted a notice to Col.Porter that if Col. Allsman was not returned by October 18th then 10 southern sympathizers would be executed.  Of the 10 selected only 1 was a soldier and one was suspected of murdering a unionist, but the other 8 had no criminal record—other than their Southern sympathies.  1 of the hostages was only 17 years old.  Col. Allsan was not found and so on the 18th at 1:00 pm, 10 innocent, brave Southern patriots were shot by 30 riflemen of the 2nd Missouri Militia.

Development of the Union Total War Policy

Union General John Pope was notorious by 1862 as a ruthless opponent of all Confederate partisans in Missouri and Mississippi.  He encouraged his troops to plunder and steal food, burn homes and property, pillage and attack, hang any civilians suspected of aiding Confederate partisans, and to shoot civilians in retaliation for Confederate guerrilla attacks.  He was praised in the Northern press for his tactics and noted by other Union officers of similar tactics, in particular Col. John Turchin, a Russian immigrant and commander of the 19th Illinois.

The Rape of Athens, Alabama

In the missile of April, 1862, Col. Turchin invaded Athens, Alabama, a prosperous town of about 1200.  However, he was driven out on May 1st by a Confederate cavalry force.  The Confederates were received with great rejoicing by the populace but their joy was short lived, as the Confederates quickly withdrew from the town.  The next day Turchin marched back into the town where the populace turned their backs to him.  Enraged by this “lack of respect” Turchin gave his troops permission to do as they pleased for the rest of the day.  Numerous houses, offices and stores were pillaged and ransacked.  Money, jewelry, dishwater, silver, supplies and anything of value was stolen.  furniture and artwork were purposely destroyed.  A white woman, the pregnant wife of a Confederate cavalryman, was singled out and gang raped, dying shortly thereafter due to miscarriage.  Several black girls were also raped and several more attempts made.  Some Union officers of integrity, under Turchin, reported this to the commanding officer, O.M.Mitchell, who immediately informed General Buell.  General Buell, a courageous man of integrity, was against total war and marched to relieve Turchin and insisted on his court martial for these lawless acts.  Torching was found guilty of not maintaining discipline among his troops and discharged from the army.  Nonetheless, a few days after his court martial, Lincoln reinstated Turchin and not only reinstated him, but promoted him to Brigadier General as well!   He was given a hero’s welcome in his hometown of Chicago.  On August 30th Gen. Buell was informed that the town of Athens had been burned down by Union troops passing through.

McClellan and Buell opposed to Total War Policy

Lest it be thought that all Unionists and Northerners were as cruel as John Turchin we must state that General Don Carlos Buell and General George McClellan were both advocates for a just war and strongly opposed the North’s total war policy.  This position caused them to be looked down upon and they were rudely relieved of their high command in favor of other generals who favored the total war policy and would advance the radical views of Lincoln and Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton.  Many other, lower ranking Union officers were against total war, and yet they had no power to prevent it and so had to carry out their orders, whether they agreed or not.

Devastation of the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia

It is necessary to note here that misconduct occurred on both sides, but in significantly different manners.  For the South depredations were rare and were not sanctioned by those in high rank and most often ended in severe punishment to those responsible.  For the North, a total war policy was the common and was not only accepted by high ranking officials but encouraged!  Time and time again soldiers and officers were promoted and praised for their total war tactics.  Up until September of 1864 the Unions total war policy had been carried out on a relatively small scale but when General Grant sent 40,000 troops under General Sheridan to reinforce General Hunter’s 22,000 troops, they prepared to carry out their methods on a grand scale.  The intent of the Northern army was to completely destroy the Shenandoah Valley, the bread basket of the Confederacy.  Union troops devastated a 92 mile strip of the Shenandoah Valley from Winchester to Staunton, and in some places the destruction was 40 miles wide.  The troops proceeded to burn all types of crops, homes, more than 2,000 barns (with all the equipment in them), 70 mills, and an estimated 11,000 cattle, 4,000 horses, and 12,000 sheep along with all other livestock.  Anything the Union couldn’t use was destroyed, including pump handles so that families could not draw water from their wells.  Sheridan had completely followed Grant’s order “to eat out Virginia clear and clean.”  However, as appalling as the devastation in the Shenandoah was, it was nothing compared to Sherman’s infamous march “from Atlanta to the sea.”

Mississippi and Georgia Burning

William Tecumseh Sherman is a name that will forever be held in infamy by all patriotic Southerners.  Notorious for his cruel tactics, Sherman left nothing but a trail of fire and she’s behind him as he marched from Mississippi to his new assignment, to capture Atlanta.  Sherman destroyed livestock, food supplies, crops, and every means of agriculture and survival.  His orders were “to make Georgia howl.”  Sherman destroyed all factories that might aid the Confederate cause and, to ensure that these were rendered completely ineffectual, Sherman deported all the factory workers (mostly women and older children) in all about 2,000 souls, many of whom were never heard of again.  Towns were looted, valuables were stolen (including wedding bands, forcefully removed from the hands of sobbing wives) buildings were torn down and burned.  As he continued his march people were harassed and cruelly tortured to reveal the locations of their hidden valuables.  However, by the time Sherman occupied Savannah, he was acclaimed as a hero in the North and highly praised for his “spectacular military achievement.” 

South Carolina under the Tyrants Heel

Union troops were hell bent on revenge when they reached South Carolina.  South Carolina was seen as the main starter of the war, the rebel that started it all and as such the Northern Army was determined to make South Carolina pay for her “rebellions.” As Sherman marched into South Carolina his troops looted and burned the towns of Buford’s Bridge, Barnwell, Blackville, Graham, Bomberg, Midway, Purysburg, Robertsville, Lowtenville, Mcphersonville, Hardeeville, Orangeburg, Lexington, Columbia, Allston, Pomaria, Winnsboro, Blackstock, Society Hill, Camden and Cheraw.  The civilians were homeless refugees, left to starve in the burning streets of what was left of the beautiful Palmetto state.  An estimated 50% of all private property was destroyed and the atrocities and murder of harmless civilians was beyond number.

Reports of Barbaric Hordes

Towards the end of the war, both Grant and Sherman became more magnanimuos in their policies.  The terms for General Lee’s surrender were very gracious and honorable as as Sherman’s terms to General Joe Johnston.  This brought severe criticism from Stanton, however they stood by the terms and even ruthless Sherman became slightly more popular in the South for his opposition to radical republican policies during the reconstruction.  Nonetheless, the damage had been done and it would be many many years before the South could ever resemble its former glory.  

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Total War: Legacies and Worldviews

Let me begin with a quote from Union General Phillip Sheridan: “ First, deal as hard blows to the enemies soldiers as possible, and then cause so much suffering to the inhabitants of the country that they will long for peace and press their government to make it…nothing should be left to the people but eyes to lament the war.”  As shocking and revolting as this statement is, it has been a widely accepted policy in many wars following the "Civil War.” - Ex: Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Mao, Castro and Chavez, to name a few. -  One asks, how could anyone perpetrate so much evil on unarmed civilians?  How can they justify total war on women and children, their own countrymen?  As Aleksander Solzhenitsyn (author of The Gulag Archipelago - a book describing the terrible prison system of the former Soviet Union) said: “ To do evil a human being must first of all believe that what he’s doing is good.”  But by what, or whom, do we define good and evil?  As we know, God is the Supreme Ruler and Lawgiver, but in many instances man sets himself up as lawgiver and the state as lawgiver, which leads to statism.  Statism puts the state in God’s place and therefore, the leaders of the state determine what is “right and wrong.”  Anything that advances the state and gives it more power is “good” and this end justifies any and all means of achieving it.  Statism is often combined with a distorted sense of patriotism - as communists said “ a lie in the service of Marxism is the truth,” unfortunately this ideology has been accepted and used to justify countless atrocities against dissenters worldwide, and the “Civil War” was no exception.  Of course, all this is covered up by some moral reason that “justifies” what they’ve done and, in many cases, by surprising the truth and persecuting the truthful.  as Solzhenitsyn also said: “Violence can only be concealed by a lie, and the lie can only be maintained by violence.”  So now we ask, how could Union generals and politicians support the destroying of most food and medical supplies in the South?  How could they terrorize civilians, burn down houses, churches and even whole communities?  How did they justify the destruction of 40% of all private property in the South?  The looting, pillaging and killing and the estimated 50,000 Southern civilians who died as a result?  How could this happen in America, brothers committing such acts against brother?  the answer is simple: Statism and distorted patriotism. After all, “the end justifies the means” correct? And thus it was that total war was waged on the South.         

Monday, February 16, 2015

The trial of Henry Wirz

Henry Wirz, a Swiss immigrant who settled in Lousiana before the civil war, had enlisted in the Confederate army and by 1864 held the position of Captain.
Captain Wirz was appointed commander of the POW camp at Andersonville, GA, after it was established in 1864.  Andersonville was the largest Confederate prison camp, holding at one time nearly 33,000 union prisoners.  Of the 45,000 prisoners who passed through the camp, nearly 13,000 died of diarrhea, dysentery, typhoid, small pox, scurvy and hospital gangrene.  Wirz's conviction and ruthless murder through hanging as a "war criminal", ranks as one of the most, shameful, unjust, legal atrocities perpetuated in American history.  After failing to trace the Lincoln assassination to Confederate President Jefferson Davis, the Judge Advocate General of the army tried to link President Davis, Robert E. Lee, Confederate secretary of war, James Seddon and Capt. Wirz to alleged war crimes at Andersonville.  Wirz was refused a trial by jury and was tried by a military commission.  13 specific murder allegations were made, and yet not a single name was given or mentioned of these alleged victims.  the prosecutors presented a parade of all the horrors in Andersonville and even attempted to use Wirz's letters as evidence against him but all that the letters proved was Wirz's requests for food and supplies for the poor prisoners.  Over 160 witnesses were called and 145 of them testified that they had no knowledge of Wirz ever killing or mistreating a prisoner.  1 prisoner gave the name of someone Wirz allegedly killed but the date of the "killing" didn't match those on the charges so the indictment was changed to match the testimony.  However, the prosecuting attorney, Cal Chipman, exerted an extraordinary control over the whole masquerade of a trial and refused to allow many witnesses to defend Wirz and for the defense to present crucial evidence to clear Wirz, stating that the evidence was "irrelevant" to the case.  In the end, Capt. Wirz was convicted on the "evidence" of a man called Feliz de la Baume who testified that he personally saw Capt. Wirz shoot prisoners.  He was given a commendation for his "zealous testimony" and was even given a job in the Department of the Interior.  After the trial ended de la Baume was identified by veterans of the 7th New York as a deserter and he was fired at which time he admitted to having committed perjury at the Wirz trial.  At the conclusion of the trial the defense was refused time to prepare their closing arguments and in frustration the last two defense attorneys quit, leaving the prosecution to present both their case unopposed.  And so it was, that on October 24th, 1865, Wirz was given a verdict of guilty and the brave Southern Captain was unjustly hung November 10th, 1865 at 10:32am.