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Old 10th July 2017, 07:41 PM   #481
BobTheCoward
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
For the rank and file it may not have been, but it's pretty certain that the signers of the Declaration of Independence did in fact realize that their action was treasonous. It was, and it was more than just a clever quip when Benjamin Franklin suggested that they would do better to hang together than separately.
The declaration says that it is the right of the people to abolish government if it becomes destructive to specified ends. If it is the right of the people, is it still treason?
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Old 10th July 2017, 08:08 PM   #482
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
The declaration says that it is the right of the people to abolish government if it becomes destructive to specified ends. If it is the right of the people, is it still treason?
It is the right of the people to dissolve the government, not a few states to decide to unilaterally leave because they didn't like the outcome of an election.
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Old 10th July 2017, 08:39 PM   #483
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
It is the right of the people to dissolve the government, not a few states to decide to unilaterally leave because they didn't like the outcome of an election.
The question is would the revolutionaries would have believed their own arguments. If bruto thinks so, I wonder what he thinks of the South's feelings of treason vs legitimate action.
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Old 10th July 2017, 09:12 PM   #484
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
The declaration says that it is the right of the people to abolish government if it becomes destructive to specified ends. If it is the right of the people, is it still treason?
Treason is a legal construct made by governments. Whether a government is good or bad, justified or not, legitimacy is not the issue. The signers of the Declaration were not fools, and they certainly realized that what they were doing violated the laws of England and would likely be treated as treasonous if they did not succeed.

There was some attempt made, I think, to consider the Revolution a civil war ( a bit less than out and out treason), but it fails that definition insofar as its intention was not to overthrow the holders of government power, but the government itself, and to found a separate nation. In that sense, I think the later "civil war" can be considered thus only after its failure, being essentially treasonous in its intention.

That's a matter of opinion, though, and my initial response was simply to the questio of whether the American revolutionaries believed what they were doing was treasonous, and I think they did.
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Old 11th July 2017, 02:37 AM   #485
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Most of the other countries that had slavery during that era weren't dependent on slavery. Slavery, and slave trading, weren't integral elements of their economy. So getting rid of slavery didn't have as much impact. It's fairly straightforward to acknowledge the essential humanity of the darker-skinned person across from you when doing so doesn't threaten you with poverty. When that admission will result in your economy, your income, and your financial security all being at severe risk... it's a little bit harder to address.
Which is why we shouldn't take seriously the idea that the south was going to just go ahead and get rid of slavery on it's own.

And it's not as though state sponsored slavery hasn't existed in some form in modern times:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forced...g_World_War_II
Quote:
The use of forced labour in Nazi Germany and throughout German-occupied Europe during World War II took place on an unprecedented scale.[2] It was a vital part of the German economic exploitation of conquered territories. It also contributed to the mass extermination of populations in German-occupied Europe. The Nazi Germans abducted approximately 12 million people from almost twenty European countries; about two thirds of whom came from Eastern Europe.[1] Many workers died as a result of their living conditions - mistreatment, malnutrition, and torture were the main causes of death. They became civilian casualties of shelling.[3] At its peak the forced labourers comprised 20% of the German work force. Counting deaths and turnover, about 15 million men and women were forced labourers at one point or another during the war.[4]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulag
Quote:
About 14 million people were imprisoned in the Gulag labor camps from 1929 to 1953
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:00 AM   #486
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
I don't think they were uniquely stupid, violent, or racist at that point in time. I'll leave you to your own opinion with respect to current behavioral trends. There's an economic factor here that gets ignored. And yes, I know - human lives >>> money!!!111!1eleventyone1! That's not the debate here, people.

Most of the other countries that had slavery during that era weren't dependent on slavery. Slavery, and slave trading, weren't integral elements of their economy. So getting rid of slavery didn't have as much impact. It's fairly straightforward to acknowledge the essential humanity of the darker-skinned person across from you when doing so doesn't threaten you with poverty. When that admission will result in your economy, your income, and your financial security all being at severe risk... it's a little bit harder to address.

At heart we're all tribal. We're great about giving lip-service to how all humans are equal, and how all lives are equal... until it comes right down to it. I like you guys, but you're random people on the internet. I can guarantee that if there's ever a forced choice between you and my family or close friends, I'll let you die every time. I won't go out of my way to kill you... but if I have to choose between saving my spouse and killing you, well I hope you believe in an afterlife.
If it was so integral why are you arguing that it was going to go away anyway?
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:05 AM   #487
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Which is why we shouldn't take seriously the idea that the south was going to just go ahead and get rid of slavery on it's own.

And it's not as though state sponsored slavery hasn't existed in some form in modern times:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forced...g_World_War_II


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulag
Hell it still exists. Though now it is mostly in the form of house slaves. Here is the story of an american inheriting his mothers slave in 1999 america.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine...-story/524490/
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:19 AM   #488
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
The question is would the revolutionaries would have believed their own arguments. If bruto thinks so, I wonder what he thinks of the South's feelings of treason vs legitimate action.
That has absolutely nothing to do with what I was saying. I was responding to your post about the right of the people to abolish, or dissolve, the government. This would have to be done through some legal process, most likely constitutional amendment, not military action. Once you skip the legal process and go to military action against the government, it's treason.

As others have pointed out, the Founders knew the American Revolution was treasonous against the British Empire. Their belief in their cause did not change that. Likewise, once the Confederacy took up arms, it became a traitor to the USA.
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Old 11th July 2017, 06:29 AM   #489
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
That has absolutely nothing to do with what I was saying. I was responding to your post about the right of the people to abolish, or dissolve, the government. This would have to be done through some legal process, most likely constitutional amendment, not military action. Once you skip the legal process and go to military action against the government, it's treason.

As others have pointed out, the Founders knew the American Revolution was treasonous against the British Empire. Their belief in their cause did not change that. Likewise, once the Confederacy took up arms, it became a traitor to the USA.
Yes, treason is a legal construct. If we mean literally, "did the revolutionaries think they violated the legal construct," of course. I wrote the question, and regardless how poorly I wrote it, it wasn't what I intended.

The declaration is a manifesto making claims to natural law (to the laws of nature and nature's god entitle them). By natural law, treason against a ruler acting against natural law is not treason.

Do you think they honestly believed in natural law and that they were following it, or do you think they wanted to break the law and simply needed a fig leaf to provide some cover?
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Old 11th July 2017, 06:47 AM   #490
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...is someone performing a Turing test here?
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Old 11th July 2017, 06:49 AM   #491
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The "Contrarian Through Philosophy" shtick has really gotten old.
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Old 11th July 2017, 06:55 AM   #492
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
...is someone performing a Turing test here?
If my comment doesn't make sense, please point out where so I can be a better writer. It is appreciated.
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Old 11th July 2017, 07:14 AM   #493
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
If my comment doesn't make sense, please point out where so I can be a better writer. It is appreciated.
I tried and I can't. It's like you lift a few words from a previous post and go off on a tangent. If there is a common thread running through your posts, I can't see it. I can not articulate what position you are taking or a specific argument you are trying to make.
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Old 11th July 2017, 07:28 AM   #494
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
Treason is a legal construct made by governments. Whether a government is good or bad, justified or not, legitimacy is not the issue. The signers of the Declaration were not fools, and they certainly realized that what they were doing violated the laws of England and would likely be treated as treasonous if they did not succeed.

There was some attempt made, I think, to consider the Revolution a civil war ( a bit less than out and out treason), but it fails that definition insofar as its intention was not to overthrow the holders of government power, but the government itself, and to found a separate nation. In that sense, I think the later "civil war" can be considered thus only after its failure, being essentially treasonous in its intention.

That's a matter of opinion, though, and my initial response was simply to the questio of whether the American revolutionaries believed what they were doing was treasonous, and I think they did.
There are few issues around the founding of the USA with a better written record of the founders thoughts. They knew that to the King and Parliament what they were doing was absolutely treason under UK law.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treason#United_States
Quote:
To avoid the abuses of the English law, treason was specifically defined in the United States Constitution, the only crime so defined. Article III, section 3 reads as follows:

Quote:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
...
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Old 11th July 2017, 07:50 AM   #495
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Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
The "Contrarian Through Philosophy" shtick has really gotten old.
In post 476 you asked what they would consider treason. I'm trying to answer that. That isn't contrarian.
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Old 11th July 2017, 07:57 AM   #496
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
In post 476 you asked what they would consider treason. I'm trying to answer that. That isn't contrarian.
Yes but as I and others have pointed out we're a good dozen pages into this thread and I have no idea what your actual stance or opinion is. You just have a problem with the statement "The Civil War was about slavery" for no reason other than you want to argue.

I've watched you nitpick a bunch of sub topics to no real point or goal, that's all.

Believe me Bob I've played the "Subnet the argument again and again to keep from having to discuss the topic" game with people who play it better than you could ever hope to.
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Old 11th July 2017, 08:01 AM   #497
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Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
Yes but as I and others have pointed out we're a good dozen pages into this thread and I have no idea what your actual stance or opinion is. You just have a problem with the statement "The Civil War was about slavery" for no reason other than you want to argue.
The reason is I think that statement is wrong. But that argument also has nothing to do with what you mentioned in post 476.
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:00 AM   #498
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
But that argument also has nothing to do with what you mentioned in post 476.
Nor have you given an answer to his question posed in post 476.
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:02 AM   #499
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
By natural law, treason against a ruler acting against natural law is not treason.
That doesn't follow. If something is treason, then it's treason. It just might not be wrong. Sometimes treason is right.

The secession of the confederacy wasn't one of those cases.
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:15 AM   #500
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Nor have you given an answer to his question posed in post 476.
I said it depends (on his or her perception).
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:19 AM   #501
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
That doesn't follow. If something is treason, then it's treason. It just might not be wrong. Sometimes treason is right.

The secession of the confederacy wasn't one of those cases.
If I declared myself king, and I tried to use a gun to get you to do what I want, you are not committing treason by stopping me. I am not legitimate government. If a government is not legitimate, it isn't treason to defy it.
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:20 AM   #502
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
The question is would the revolutionaries would have believed their own arguments. If bruto thinks so, I wonder what he thinks of the South's feelings of treason vs legitimate action.
As has been pointed out already, folks like Benjamin Franklin were quite aware that what they were doing was treason, and the penalty they could expect ("better to hang together...).

You can also see that, once in the driver's seat the Founders viewed actions similar to their act of successful treason as treasonous (see Whiskey Rebellion).

As for the idea that the American Revolution could be looked at as a civil war, it was for the most part by both Americans and by the British - hence the large numbers of refugees post conflict that left for parts British, and the rather poor treatment often meted out to those who couldn't or wouldn't leave. It was also one of the reasons why the dispatching of German mercenaries to fight in the Americas was seen very negatively - your own soldiers might balk at going against their fellow Englishmen, but foreigners, they might be asked to do anything and without the commonality of blood, whose to say they won't do it.
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Old 11th July 2017, 09:30 AM   #503
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Originally Posted by Border Reiver View Post
As has been pointed out already, folks like Benjamin Franklin were quite aware that what they were doing was treason, and the penalty they could expect ("better to hang together...).
While I agree that they saw their actions as treason,this isn't a good argument that they see their actions as treason against legitimate government. If an illegitimate militia claiming to be the government of north Dakota hangs you for sedition, that doesn't mean you committed sedition.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:09 AM   #504
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
I said it depends (on his or her perception).
Which isn't an answer. Perhaps you'd like to read the question again.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:10 AM   #505
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
If I declared myself king, and I tried to use a gun to get you to do what I want, you are not committing treason by stopping me. I am not legitimate government. If a government is not legitimate, it isn't treason to defy it.
The problem isn't that you aren't a legitimate government. The problem is that you aren't a government at all. One can't commit treason against a non-government.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:13 AM   #506
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Which isn't an answer. Perhaps you'd like to read the question again.
"It depends" is certainly an answer, just not a very clear one.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:19 AM   #507
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
While I agree that they saw their actions as treason,this isn't a good argument that they see their actions as treason against legitimate government. If an illegitimate militia claiming to be the government of north Dakota hangs you for sedition, that doesn't mean you committed sedition.
Now you're getting into some philosophical nuances, clearly, as sedition, treason, etc., are legal constructs of whatever government is in power. You're not saying much different from the idea that birth control is not a sin even if a stupid administration says it is. True enough, but a crime is a crime in whatever jurisdiction you find yourself in.

In any event, if you're going to start speaking of "illegitimate" governments, I think you'd have to figure out what that means. In the case of the colonies, the government was not illegitimate by definition, and I don't think the colonists deluded themselves that the government was illegitimate at root. In the case of the secession, it would be a hard argument to make as well, considering the way the states had joined the union in the first place and continued to be a part of it. The insurrection was not against illegitimate usurpation of power within the Union government, but against the union itself. The goal of the secession was not to reform the government, but to form a new and different nation, and that, by the very definition of treason in the Constitution, is clearly treason. You may dispute the validity of the Constitution, or the rightness of all sorts of things, but if breaking off from the government to form a new nation, and fighting against it as a separate nation, is not treason by that definition, what is?

I would add that in your own example of "an illegitimate militia claiming to be the government" it's also clear that that militia is the one committing treason, as their laws would also be illegitimate. That's quite different, I think. In any case, it's clear that whatever the phlosophical fine points of the argument, the colonists knew, and accepted, that what they were doing was treasonous.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:28 AM   #508
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Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
I'm scared to ask what the Southern apologist would consider treason given that literally uprising against your own country doesn't seem to count.
Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
That depends. Do you think the people of the revolutionary war saw it as treason?
The above is not an answer.

Note that the question is not what a southern apologist wouldn't consider treason, but what they would consider treason. If you think that there is anything that they would consider treason, then the answer isn't "it depends" (That's incoherent), but rather the specific thing that you think they would consider treason.

If you don't think there's something that they would consider treason, you can say that too.
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Old 11th July 2017, 10:54 AM   #509
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
Now you're getting into some philosophical nuances, clearly, as sedition, treason, etc., are legal constructs of whatever government is in power. You're not saying much different from the idea that birth control is not a sin even if a stupid administration says it is. True enough, but a crime is a crime in whatever jurisdiction you find yourself in.

In any event, if you're going to start speaking of "illegitimate" governments, I think you'd have to figure out what that means. In the case of the colonies, the government was not illegitimate by definition, and I don't think the colonists deluded themselves that the government was illegitimate at root. In the case of the secession, it would be a hard argument to make as well, considering the way the states had joined the union in the first place and continued to be a part of it. The insurrection was not against illegitimate usurpation of power within the Union government, but against the union itself. The goal of the secession was not to reform the government, but to form a new and different nation, and that, by the very definition of treason in the Constitution, is clearly treason. You may dispute the validity of the Constitution, or the rightness of all sorts of things, but if breaking off from the government to form a new nation, and fighting against it as a separate nation, is not treason by that definition, what is?

I would add that in your own example of "an illegitimate militia claiming to be the government" it's also clear that that militia is the one committing treason, as their laws would also be illegitimate. That's quite different, I think. In any case, it's clear that whatever the phlosophical fine points of the argument, the colonists knew, and accepted, that what they were doing was treasonous.

I want to talk specifically about this

Quote:
In the case of the colonies, the government was not illegitimate by definition, and I don't think the colonists deluded themselves that the government was illegitimate at root.

My assertion would be that the declaration of independence does make an argument that it is not legitimate

Quote:
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.
If you agree that it is making that argument (if you don't agree, ignore this part), do you think they deluded themselves into believing that or are they lying? Or something else?
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Old 11th July 2017, 01:16 PM   #510
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
If you agree that it is making that argument (if you don't agree, ignore this part), do you think they deluded themselves into believing that or are they lying? Or something else?
I still don't understand what you are trying to argue here. Lying about what?
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Old 11th July 2017, 01:35 PM   #511
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
I still don't understand what you are trying to argue here. Lying about what?
Did they honestly believe it was their right and duty to rebel?
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Old 11th July 2017, 02:28 PM   #512
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
I want to talk specifically about this...
Then I think a new thread would be more appropriate, since your topic has nothing to do with Confederate monuments and their removal.
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Old 11th July 2017, 02:31 PM   #513
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Which is why we shouldn't take seriously the idea that the south was going to just go ahead and get rid of slavery on it's own.

And it's not as though state sponsored slavery hasn't existed in some form in modern times:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forced...g_World_War_II


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulag
There's a world of difference between the institution of racial slavery during peacetime and the type of slavery practiced by the Nazis, and the Allies, during World War 2. The 20th century enslavement of the local population by an invading army during wartime cannot be used to predict what would have happened to slavery in the United States absent the Civil War.

There's no reason to believe slavery as it existed in the South would not have died out eventually through change in the public attitude toward slavery or because mechanization made the slave model inefficient. We absolutely would not have slavery in the United States today except for that which allowed by the 13th amendment.
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Old 11th July 2017, 02:34 PM   #514
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Did they honestly believe it was their right and duty to rebel?
Who cares? It doesn't matter, because they still understood it was treason against the British Crown. They knew that if they weren't successful they would be tried, and likely killed, for committing that treason.

What point are you trying to make?
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Old 11th July 2017, 02:40 PM   #515
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Originally Posted by CaptainHowdy View Post
There's a world of difference between the institution of racial slavery during peacetime and the type of slavery practiced by the Nazis, and the Allies, during World War 2. The 20th century enslavement of the local population by an invading army during wartime cannot be used to predict what would have happened to slavery in the United States absent the Civil War.
Sure, it was different. Forced labor during war time was temporary. Institutionalized racial slavery during peacetime was long-term and ingrained in the culture, to the point that the repercussions are still being felt today.

Originally Posted by CaptainHowdy View Post
There's no reason to believe slavery as it existed in the South would not have died out eventually through change in the public attitude toward slavery or because mechanization made the slave model inefficient.
So, your argument is that we could have had an additional 100-150 years of racial slavery, if what? The South hadn't seceded and/or started the Civil War?
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:00 PM   #516
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I am really not sure what is being argued here, other than the finer points of definition. It's clear that the colonists believed it was right and good to rebel, and to throw off the government that existed. Does that make it illegitimate? I don't think so, because their goal was to separate from it, not to reform it. They believed both that they were justified, and that the existing government would consider them treasonous.

Likewise, no doubt the Confederates believed it was right and good to secede and to found a country, treason notwithstanding. But of course if you have a belief or a vested interest it's easy enough to justify things. They also thought it was good and right to keep slaves, and that white supremacy was God's law and a righteous position, so what they believed about their secession might be colored by this. In other words, and in short, who gives a flying leap at a rolling donut what they thought about their rightness or righteousness, or whether they deceived themselves about the treasonous nature of their enterprise. They were wrong and they lost. They were really really wrong.
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:50 PM   #517
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Originally Posted by Ian Osborne View Post
Why? Every other country except Haiti has done away with slavery without bloodshed, and no other country had to go to war with itself.

I think you have a lot to learn about the history of slavery in those countries which depended upon the institution as a keystone of their agricultural economy.

All of them endured extended strife and bloodshed as a result of chattel slavery. Many looked at the experiences of the U.S.A, as an object lesson, and slowly, reluctantly, learned from the mistakes made here.

Start with Brazil. Their history was much like ours in many ways.


Quote:
Are southern Americans uniquely stupid, violent or racist?

Another good example for review would be that of New Orleans and the French possessions which were assimilated into the U.S.

Prior to the Americans taking possession there was a large and thriving community of free people of color. No, they were not perfectly equal, but they had rights, enshrined in law, and owned their own businesses and property. Some of them went to Europe for educations and came back physicians and educators.

This came to a screeching halt when the Americans took over. Blacks whose freedom went back generations could suddenly find themselves made slaves just because their paperwork got "lost". Rights and privileges which had been theirs without question just vaporized, and in less than a generation the condition of the blacks there was no different than it was anywhere else in the American South.

Quite a few of them fled to the North or to the western territories (or to Europe, or even elsewhere in the Americas) to avoid Southern bigotry and brutality.
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Old 11th July 2017, 03:57 PM   #518
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
<snip>

Most of the other countries that had slavery during that era weren't dependent on slavery. Slavery, and slave trading, weren't integral elements of their economy. So getting rid of slavery didn't have as much impact.

<snip>

That you can make that assertion reveals some serious gaps in your knowledge of the history of other slave owning countries of the time.

The demise of the plantation systems based on chattel slavery caused huge upheavals and strife in every country where it was practiced.

It could be argued that some of them are still recovering.
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Old 11th July 2017, 04:06 PM   #519
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
In other words, and in short, who gives a flying leap at a rolling donut what they thought about their rightness or righteousness, or whether they deceived themselves about the treasonous nature of their enterprise. They were wrong and they lost. They were really really wrong.
I give a flying leap because I think it is some of the most interesting questions about what they did
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Old 11th July 2017, 04:18 PM   #520
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Originally Posted by paulhutch View Post
There are few issues around the founding of the USA with a better written record of the founders thoughts. They knew that to the King and Parliament what they were doing was absolutely treason under UK law.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treason#United_States

And quite a few of them were just fine with that.

An awfully large percentage of the colonists who came to the the American colonies from England, Ireland, Scotland, and what became Great Britain did so with no love lost for British rule. And their descendants weren't cherishing those memories, either. Particularly the Scots, Scotch Irish (Ulster Scots), and Irish whose homes and livelihoods had basically been stripped from them. (In the case of the Ulster Scots, more than once.)

Those shipped over in indentured servitude were often the victims of laws specifically crafted to generate bodies for the purpose.

Even the religious dissenters were less than enamored of British rule, and not all of them were Puritans who came here with the benefits of wealth and privilege accompanying them.

The British shipped generations of their most rebellious and troublesome citizens, as well as the most abused by the government. It shouldn't have been much of a surprise that they weren't the most tractable of subjects to the Crown.
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