The American Civil War
Before 1850, America had been plagued by many issues in which it did not agree on. There were various religious movements, little wars with Mexico and the rise and fall of different leaders in the warring states. The events leading to the civil war however represent the largest fight that Americans had among themselves. These little conflicts were never resolved and the animosity boiled over into a civil war of America fighting itself.
The primary causes of the civil war begun in 1850 with the Fugitive Slave Act. Before this act, slaves would escape to the North and live as free blacks because the North did not support slavery. Southerners became emboldened after the establishment of this act and begun going as far as disrupting peace in the North in the name of searching for runaway slaves. The conflict escalated because Southerners believed that Northerners were out to hide their slaves.
The election of 1852 showed the divisions that affected America because politicians were divided on the slavery issue. The elected government is further divided with the Whig party already in two groups and Southern Democrats being the majority in the government things would begin to go south and fast. The divisions are made worse by President Pierce who is unable to deal with the warring parties and Douglas tries to solve the animosity by giving power to the new states of Kansas and Nebraska power to choose if they were anti or proslavery. Northerners are sad for this fact because both states are north of the compromise line. Further divisions occur. The new state of Kansas became the hot spot for violence as the new settlers from the north and the south clashed on ideologies. Men from both sides are killed and tensions expand further. Southerners like Sumner began opposing slavery and the other southerners were not too happy about it and Sumner paid for it with strokes of the cane.
In 1857, depression ails America and Southerners take advantage of this to blame Northerners for the depression by saying that enslaving Africans would protect them from depression. America was definitely crumbling and the leaders chosen like Abraham Lincoln were neither hot nor cold on the slavery issue.The American Civil War
The Southerners again felt disadvantaged. They did not want a republican president; they wanted a Federal Slave Code for all Territories and wanted Cuba to act as a slave trade centre. All these demand s were not possible after Lincolns win and the Southerners were outraged and 7 states decide that enough is enough and secede from the United States of America to form Confederate States of America. The reason the United States was a force was because of the union between all the states. The new division meant that both groups felt exposed and weak. This was the final blow. Northerners decided that the South was participating in an illegal activity and a fight to keep this union together broke out. The civil war and all its horrors had begun. The gun fire at Fort Sumter was the first place the war was experienced.
In summary, the primary causes of the civil war are all linked to the difference in ideology between the Northern and the Southern States. The war began as a result of unresolved differences on whether to hold on to slavery or do away with it.
I feel that the South is more to blame for the Civil war. A series of events are testament of this. The south had used slaves for a long time without the North intervening or being concerned about the issue. Southerners then get irritated because their slaves are disappearing fast. They begin infiltrating the Northern states and demanding for their slaves. They disrupt the Northern community and peace in the process because they are hunting for black people who so far have enjoyed being Free in the north. Tensions between the northerners and southerners begun as a result of southerners kept threatening the northerners against hiding their slaves. This accusations and bad blood between both sides resulted into tensions and forced people from both parties to become outspoken on the issue. The North defended the rights of the Black and was against slavery, the southerners believed that the blacks could only be slaves and did not agree with the northerners.The American Civil War
These simple fights spilled over to politics for the first time and political parties and leaders were forced to take a stand. Either be for proslavery or be against it. Politicians who took a middle ground like Lincoln were not famous. After the 1856 elections, the Southerners felt aggrieved and resulted to threatening the union by seceding and forming their own government. The United States in the first instance had been formed as a result of a promise of the involved states to be part of the union. The southerners breaking this deal were both unconstitutional and law breakers but they did not care as long as they got their way.
President Lincoln tried to resolve the matter but Southerners once again were hell bent on having their way. They went as far as electing their own president, Jefferson Davis. They also established their own capital city and wrote their own constitution. The Southerners became traitors. They had forgotten their old promise of patriotism and were busy propagating systems that favoured only them. The southerners made the major conflicts that led to the civil war by going against the systems in place all in abide to retain their slaves who were not even as beneficial as they thought. Northerners only participated in the Civil war to defend the union that both parties had once sworn allegiance to.The American Civil War
The Civil war would definitely have been avoided in the following ways. Southerners should not have used force to get their way. They would not have moved to the North and begun accusations because before then, the North did not care about what was happening in the South. The war on slavery would have been avoided by avoiding bloodshed and instead the two sides would have resulted to reason and dialogue to resolve the issue. The Fugitive Slave Act must never have been established and northerners would not have had reason to clash with the south. If political leaders in the political parties had not taken extreme stands, parties would not be divided and leaders would not be opposed.
If the Southerners had never made the final mistake of seceding, the Civil war would not have occurred with such intensity. Finally, the proslavery and anti-slavery crusaders should not have taken extreme measures such as shedding blood to prove their points. If slavery had been abolished a long time ago, America would have nothing to fight about in the first place. The decision to keep slaves on one side and the resolution to free slaves on the other hand led to conflicts that culminated in bloodshed. A compromise would have been reached between both parties without the need for a war. However, the civil war was a necessary evil because neither side was willing to concede defeat. Not only did it established back the United States of America, but it also brought about more cohesion as the black man was set free and today he enjoys citizenship in America.The American Civil War