Winston: Look for the Elephant. Lincoln was Great!!

You Winston are fiesty. I don't have much time so here it goes.

1. The south seceded over tariffs and taxes.....this is like believing the world is flat. Did it piss the south off, Hell yea. Would it piss me off? Hell yea. Enough to join a tea party. Hell yea. It may have put some of the powder in a keg, but nowhere close to being the reason for Civil War. The South's fervent and hysterical conviction topped off the powder keg and then Lincoln's election was the match that they tossed themselves tossed in.

1. To the first point of it still being a farce because it is "political".

Post hoc ergo propter hoc eh? The Declaration of Independence, the Constitutional Convention, the Bill of Rights, you don't think there was any politics involved there do you? Even if it is overtly "political" it bore fruits. The fruits were state senators, rights to vote, etc. Those fruits are real. Those fruits aren't a farce, they are action, enfranchisement. Politics, as ugly as it can be, is how things get done in real life.

2. To quote: The slaves would have been freed with a Union victory, regardless of whether or not Lincoln made that speech.

False. Union forces up until that time were not "freeing slaves" and Lincoln had not until the proclamation said he would free all the slave. To assume that the war was going to free the slaves was not a given at that time. The war began over the extension of Slavery not the existence. Lincoln changed this stance. Which is always acceptable if you go from a stupid stance to not-stupid stance. Also, I can't stress enough that using Seward to battle the Emancipation Proclamation is like using pope to argue against the Trinity.

3. He is a racist.

Fine, he was a racist. Like 90% of the population at the time but I'll follow you this time into your pristine (and airless) ideological vacuum and pretend for a moment that "context" doesn't matter. That only makes the proclamation, and the turning point it represented, all the more an impressive and admirable feat of judgment because it was an unpopular move made in favor of a people that, according to you, he didn't care about.

3a. Why was it necessary to give the Emancipation Proclamation?

Are you kidding me? Do you know history? Lincoln's view about slavery were still shifting. As long as the South abided by the Consitution, Lincoln could do nothing about slavery. By seceding the South gave up their Constitutional protections which ironically gave Lincoln the opening necessary to abolish slavery, by invoking the war powers and ending slavery as a means to ending the rebellion. The North didn't lead Lincoln. Lincoln led the North, saved the union and in the process was able to remove the one cancer that had threatened the country from and since its inception. Anyone with any critical or even just common sense would consider those accomplishments reasonably decent grounds for being considered a decent President

3b. Boycott isn't absurdity.

False. If you think the North was a cohesive body against slavery you fail to understand the zeitgeist of the time. The North could hardly be described as unified in its opposition to slavery. Everyone thought the abolitionists were nuts and wished they would just go away. People still think that wasn't enough unity against slavery in the North to institute a boycott. And what does it matter anyway; the south had already illegally seceded by the time Lincoln was inaugurated. So a boycott is the answer when the south attacked Fort Sumter? Puppy dogs and rainbows. It also willfully ignores 70 years of American History on the subject of slavery to assume that it wasn't really a problem.

4. The How is Lincoln different other than the body count!

Ok, I'll give you your number, for the fun of it. But then detaining 13,535 people during a Civil War is the same as Nazism? Maybe a starting point to an intelligent disagreement (instead of a hysterical) would be to recognize and acknowledge the difference between detention and systematic genocide. If you can't tell the difference were done here.

4a. Also you talk about how flippant I am with constitutionally protected rights and I must to assume you are joking. The irony is so thick I am choking. You talk about it, but refuse to acknowledge slavery as an issue, till I ply you on it. You are more worried about those southern racists being taxed and the "detainees" than the entire race of humans being bought and sold and used as property! CONSTITUTIONALLY PROTECTED RIGHTS? During this period in U.S. history the South is having their rights infringed upon? Not the Slaves? The south and the detainees? WOW! Look really hard at that and try NOT to see the 4 million pound elephant in the room.

5. Secession isn't a daydream.

False. It is a daydream. Nowhere in the constitution do I find a clause of secession for States. Even slaveholding southerner Andrew Jackson knew that.

But for fun let's trace your argument from start to finish: Lincoln, the-despot-in-waiting, bides his time while Congress after Congress passes tariff after tariff, slowly strangling the south and depriving the noble, law-abiding slaveholders of their God-given rights to wrest their God-given profits from their "chattels". Then Lincoln, through his machinations gets nominated by the Republicans. The South doesn't like the rules of the game anymore and says "screw you guys, I'm going home." At last, 15 years since he was last in public office, Lincoln's diabolical plan is beginning to unfold! He uses his mind control powers to convince South Carolina to fire on Fort Sumter, giving him the war he always wanted. At last he can suspend the Constitution, throw 15,000 people in jail (a precurser to the concentration camps apparently, nevermind Andersonville), get excoriated by the press and kill all the Americans he wants! You know what, even if you are right and this is true we can both still agree he’s a genius.

6. Most importantly it's clear that I will never be able to convince you of the greatness of Lincoln, because you judge every decision through the haze of a non-existent, never-existed, never could exist ideological pipe dream. Please tell me when the government that you espouse ever existed? You knock down Lincoln because he didn't run government according to some absurdly Pollyana-ish idea of government. You are like the physicist who, when called in by a farmer to figure out why his chickens aren't laying any eggs, replies "I have an answer but it only works with spherical chickens in a vacuum." But whatever, it seems to make you happy brother, so keep puffing away.

If that makes me a lackey to Lincoln's Big Brother fine, better that than to carry water for little sister.... the racist southern junto and their slaveocracy.


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