I don't believe it was more than one cause, as I posted in another response the concept of all the issues between the secessionists and who they seceded from is different from the cause of secession.Thanks, Matt; and thank you for these quotations. However, I think you missed my nuance.
It sounds to me like you believe slavery and slavery alone was the cause. Others have indicated that Secession and war was NOT monocausational. My question once again for the record was this: Who is it who gets to decide which cause was the primary cause among more than one cause?
Secession was a specific sentence for a specific crime... all other less important crimes against the South didn't warrant or cause secession. The best evidence is simply history, that until Lincoln was elected secession had never happened despite multiple political divisions. The specific context surrounding slave and anti-slave interests and Lincoln's election was the specific cause of secession. I think it's as simple as that.
Certainly when you are deciding why a group of people did something you would in fact look at what that group said they did it for. Especially when pretty much all key influential voices behind such an action speak along the same lines.Do the Secessionists themselves get that privilege?
You must first cross that bridge before going elsewhere. You either:
1. Believe that collective expressed cause and then you're done, congratulations you found the cause
2. Believe they were wrong because they deliberately lied, then you must explain what they lied about and prove they did, why, and how well they pulled off such a collective lie that correlates with the same historical struggles over the same issue
3. Believe they were wrong unintentionally... which leads to most of the same questions but instead of why they lied why they believed so wrong, of course you then must also prove why you have a more valid opinion on why they did what they did than the collective message of the secessionists themselves.
I don't believe anyone was objective or neutral in that conflict. You are mistaken. You can disagree with the intentions of a historical group why still taking their collective message of why they did what they did as true.I do not grant them quote the neutrality and objectivity you kindly bestow on them.
Most of these documents talked about high level motivations and interests... the entire event triggered by the 1860 elections. Each reference bring up different specific historical events leading up to it. I'm not sure what the purpose of what you propose would be. If you are looking for a primary cause of why a large group of influential people did what they did why would you not read their collective words on why they did what they did, their debates with each other while they did it, on when to do it, how to do it, and whether to do it. Then you determine whether there's a common message in that. You don't look at every little insignificant comment or detail in or missing.Think about this, as I will mention it in a new thread: What would an orals committee for a PhD do with these Secession documents, if they were turned in as dissertations --and not based on hindsight, as someone is needlessly sure to object that I am doing. I see nothing in these Secesh documents complaining about the 1853 $10 million subsidy to the slave states for the Gadsden Purchase. Could this have been an oversight by the South so pregnant with injured innocence? Can you picture the Southern uproar, if Congress had awarded $10 million for the route through Kansas/Nebraska in 1854? Can you paint that picture for me?
My response was solely about South Carolina, I quoted the official South Carolina commissioner sent to the Virginia Secession Convention. Might as well be the SC commissioner sent to these forums, to you. Do you have proof he wasn't a valid commissioner, that SC was wrong in it's official message of why it seceded through him? I'm curious why you would dismiss that official message giving slavery not only as the primary cause, but the only cause listed. He only listed 4 issues all tied to slavery.I don't think I am mixing up anything. All I did was ask a question. I repeat: Who gets to decide what was primary? And I prefer answers that relate solely to South Carolina, though admittedly I did not state that in my original post.
I take your answer to be that the Seceshers themselves get to decide what was PRIMARY. While I don't agree with that, it is not my objective to argue with you. You answered my question with that, and that is what I asked for. Thank you.
I don't completely disagree with you, though then again I suspect that commissioner probably had a better chance of having more personal insight into the situation than either of us do in the here and now.The First flaw in this appeal to Virginia that any peer reviewer would have caught --and that any person worth his scholarly salt should have caught-- is the scrawny scarecrow encapsulated in this phony phrase: "the people of the North." At best, that could only be "some" people of the North, and it was also certainly true of "some" people in the South!! One problem the South had was not just slavery but straw men. They have done nothing other than confirm the old adage, "The first casualty of war is truth." Had these ostensibly spiritual antebellum Bible-banging bloviators simply read what John the Baptist told the soldiers who inquired of him their duty, they would have read, "Don't lie about your enemies."
Had I been a Virginia listener to this speaker in 1861, I would have said to him the same words Jimmy Carter said about the later Virginian, Jerry Falwell, after Jerry attacked Jimmy over the Panama Canal, to wit, "You can go to hell --in a Christian sort of way."
Jimmy the Baptist
His words match countless other words regarding secession from secessionists. Such generalizations are common place, then, before, and even now.
So you argue he overgeneralizes the North, I still don't see why I should believe you over him on why he and his State seceded, considering he was an official commissioner from South Carolina at the time.