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Strawman Building in Defense of Treason in Defense of Slavery

[ 79 ] April 8, 2010 |

In attempting to defend the indefensible, John Guardino says that picking on Bob McDonnell’s celebration of pro-slavery treason is unfair because many Confederate soldiers were not personally motivated by slavery.   Actually, even more pathetically he says that people who believe that treason in defense of slavery is nothing to celebrate in 2010 are “race-baiting.”    Obviously, his entire argument is specious, given that McDonnell didn’t issue a proclamation of remembrance for the Civil War, or even for Confederate soldiers, but for the Confederacy itself.

But even on its own terms, the argument fails.   Let’s concede that many Confederate soldiers fought valiantly for the Confederacy’s abominable cause and assume arguendo that many Confederate soldiers were not motivated primarily by a desire to protect slavery when joining in a treasonous war.    By the same token, I’m sure many members of the Wehrmacht fought valiantly and were not personally motivated by a desire to exterminate Jews; this would hardly make a month commemorating Nazi soldiers — let alone a “Nazi History Month” whose proclamation made no reference to genocide — defensible.    And if we concede that Confederate soldiers were fighting for a kinder, gentler form of white supremacist authoritarianism than the Nazis, at least members of the Wehrmacht weren’t taking up arms against their own country…

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  1. rea says:

    Remember Reagan at Bittenberg?

  2. ThresherK says:

    because many Confederate soliders were not personally motivated by slavery

    What’s 19th-century-speak for “What’s the matter with Kansas”?

  3. Jazgar says:

    Great post, great point. Teensie nitpick:

    many members of the Wehrmacht “fought” (not faught)

  4. McKingford says:

    I think all this equation of the Confederacy with race is so unfair. Why does celebrating the Confederacy have to be about slavery? Why can’t it just be a celebration of southern heritage, you know – things like peach cobbler?

    WHAT DO YOU HAVE AGAINST PEACH COBBLER?!

    • Bart says:

      Don’t forget the hoop skirts!

    • Rob says:

      Nobody talks about forcing the Native Americans off their land anymore!

    • Socraticsilence says:

      and Tera- maybe Mcdonell just really likes Gone with the Wind! (not getting into the fact that GWTW was less historically accurate than Birth of a Nation- maybe the books better and doesn’t soft pedal that the lifestyle were supposed to mourn was made possible by human bondage).

      • ThresherK says:

        Don’t have a copy on me, but Hollywood’s imagination did run wild when creating Tara and Twelve Oaks. Neither of them, in the book, was a mansion. Big and sturdy, but not finished to the nth degree. It’s amazing what the art directors could do.

        The Magnificent Ambersons, however, well they had a mansion.

  5. Now, now. I’m sure he’d also agree that the men fighting for the Taliban in Afghanistan aren’t solely motivated by Islamofascism.

  6. tekel says:

    I liked where you were going with this line of argument, but since you Godwined yourself in this post, you lose.

    Too bad, so sad. Nothing to see here now, please move along.

  7. Ben JB says:

    I’m engaged in pretty much the same argument over here: http://oldvirginiablog.blogspot.com/2010/04/another-proclamation.html.

    It’s so weird that people want to celebrate heritage (without ever really defining what that means) and start their history at a very particular point: “We were just here, minding our own secession, when suddenly, the North invaded!” Maybe “weird” isn’t the right word; it’s amazing to me that people can’t see what all the fuss is about.

    • McKingford says:

      Well, it would be weird if it were really a celebration of heritage. But there are 200+ years of “southern” heritage to celebrate (hoop skirts, peach cobbler, grits and mint julep), yet it seems the only thing they really want to celebrate were the 5 years they were in a treasonous war in defense of slavery.

      Which makes me think it isn’t about heritage…

      • Glenn says:

        Well, that’s because there is no identifiable common “Southern” heritage beyond the Confederacy and its raison d’etre, slavery. I grew up in Georgia, and I assure you we never felt any particular kinship with our brethren in Alabama (much less, say, Virginia — which was “the North” as far as we were concerned) outside of such matters.

        Put another way, no one ever talks about celebrating “Northern” heritage, because there is no such thing. Same for the South.

        • Halloween Jack says:

          Indeed. You even have intrastate divisions and rivalries, such as within Tennessee; the three stars on the flag signify the three “Grand Divisions”, which is another way of saying that there are in effect three sub-states that don’t much like each other and don’t have much to do with each other, unless the Vols are having a good season, of course.

          • lou says:

            Indeed, eastern Tennessee was never into that confederacy thing anyway and dabbled in guerilla warfare for the Union against their Tennessee brethren.

        • Hogan says:

          there is no identifiable common “Southern” heritage beyond the Confederacy and its raison d’etre, slavery

          Does “we’re not fuckin Northerners” count?

    • Socraticsilence says:

      I’m actually kind of curious why if we want to celebrate Southern History, we refer to it as “Confederate History Month” surely a 4 year period isn’t the best summation of the South- heck, quite frankly summarizing Southern History as the Confederacy seems to be slander- why not point out Washington, Jefferson and Mason (all Virginians and the first two at least far more important in both Virginia and American History than any Confederate), why exactly is a 4 year period of treasonous rebellion which despite revisionism was (according to primary sources) in large part about slavery the be all and end all of the South to some people (both Southern and Yankee)- I say this as a man raised in the South, romanticizing the lost cause and ignoring the rest does a grave disservice to both history and the South in general.

  8. [...] Strawman Building in Defense of Treason in Defense of Slavery – [...]

  9. Jim Harrison says:

    Bringing up Hitler in an argument is usually objectionable, but what is really objectionable in sentimental accounts of the Confederacy is ignoring the plain fact that slavery was an abomination at least as horrible as the German destruction of the Jews and more than comparable in magnitude. What Virginia’s governor undertook is the moral equivalent of holocaust denial.

  10. I agree with this post generally, but have a nitpick. It is my understanding that at least some members of the CSA army were drafted into service and so did not necessarily fight voluntarily. If I’m right, it certainly doesn’t hamper the validity of Mr. Lemieux’s point, but it may make it believable to state that at least some confederate soldiers might not have fought to support slavery.

    • Mike says:

      And he allowed for that possibility, but pointed out that we’ve never allowed that as a justification for fighting to support something reprehensible. That was the whole point of the comparison to German soldiers. Sure, it’s possible (probable?) that the majority didn’t want to exterminate the Jewish race in death camps. They still fought for a government that wanted to do so, and tried to do so, and killed 6 million people in the process. Those soldiers didn’t have to fight for that government and that cause, but they did. As such, lionizing them would be inappropriate. Lionizing the government that they fought for would be monstrous.

    • Jay C says:

      To be sure, though; Gov. McDonnell’s original proclamation was presented as a specific memorialization of the Confederacy, per se, not “Confederate soldiers” (of whom it is certain, as it was in the Union Army as well, that not ALL of them were serving “voluntarily”) – with the slavery issue conveniently omitted, backpedaling “apology” notwithstanding.

      One presumes that Gov. McDonnell had had somebody proofread or vet his statement before it was issued: it’s not a leap of logic to assume that said omission was not inadvertent.

      • Scott Lemieux says:

        Right — all this stuff about the motivations of soldiers is just an evasion. Of course, conscripted Confederate soldiers do not bear the primary moral responsibility for the immorality of the Confederacy, but nobody is saying otherwise.

  11. Ed says:

    but what is really objectionable in sentimental accounts of the Confederacy is ignoring the plain fact that slavery was an abomination at least as horrible as the German destruction of the Jews and more than comparable in magnitude. What Virginia’s governor undertook is the moral equivalent of holocaust denial.

    And Jefferson Davis was the moral equivalent Hitler. Hoo, boy. I guess some liberals like the idea of collective responsibility when it works for them. The abomination of slavery was aided and abetted by the North for a century.

    I also note the word “treason” is getting flung around a lot in the last few posts. One man’s treason is another man’s self-determination. If white Southerners wanted to form another government that suited them better it’s not clear to me why they shouldn’t have the right to fight to do that (although not to take black Americans who had not been consulted on the matter with them). They fought and lost and the question was settled that way.

    The Confederates started drafting soldiers very early on. Many Federal soldiers regarded themselves as fighting for the Union and not the eradication of slavery. Many Northern men evaded army service, apparently less than eager to fight for the Union or the slaves.

    • Halloween Jack says:

      If white Southerners wanted to form another government that suited them better it’s not clear to me why they shouldn’t have the right to fight to do that (although not to take black Americans who had not been consulted on the matter with them).

      Bit of a “if my aunt had balls she’d be my uncle” argument you have going there. See also.

    • wengler says:

      I’m going to have to keep making this point I think. Just because one group of people in your state(rich, white plantation slave owners) want to secede does not give them the right to take the entire population of the state with them.

      A lot of men from Southern states fought for the Union. Let me say that again, a lot of Southern men fought for the Union. Hell the initial warplan to strangle the South was drawn up by a Southerner(Winfield Scott), and the US Navy which had very few defections and southern admirals(‘damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead’ Farragut was from Tennessee).

      Secession went from slightly popular to unpopular to highly unpopular in the South. The desertion rate was huge near the end of the war. Yet we get some “heritage” nonsense pushed first by the neo-KKK of the ’20s then by the segregationists of the ’50s and now the perfectly non-racist Republicans of today.

      The Confederacy lost the war but won the history. And our country is worse off because of it.

    • Socraticsilence says:

      You know Tim McVeigh thought he was striking a blow for liberty to, funnily enough most people don’t agree.

    • Jim Harrison says:

      Nobody is defending the role of Northerners in slavery; but by 1860 the North, along with almost all of the civilized world, had recognized that slavery was an abomination. I heard plenty of slippery defenses of the South growing up–my great, great, great, great grandfather, a captain in the CSA, died on the first day at Shiloh as he led a charge against the Union lines. Relatives and moral relativism aside, its time we fully recognized the radical evil that was the Confederacy. If the Union had sold rebel men, women, and children into slavery in African palm oil plantations to pay off the Federal war debt, it would have been no worse than what slave power had itself done though I doubt if Southern apologists would have been so complacent about it as our Ed here apparently is about slavery.

    • ralphdibny says:

      Hooboy indeed. I’m not even gonna touch paragraph 2, but in both 1 and 3 you make the ever-popular “the North did bad stuff too” argument. Did you notice that the entire point of the post was about how defenders of celebrating the Confederacy have to resort to straw man arguments?

      (For example, instead of engaging the actual argument against McDonnell’s resolution, someone might substitute a much weaker argument that they can then easily disprove. A weak argument like “The South was/is totally evil while the North was/is completely blameless.” See how that works?)

      • Scott Lemieux says:

        Right — there’s no collective guilt argument being made here, just criticism of the Southern political elites who committed treason to protect slavery and the people who continue to romanticize them. Also, the fact that the Civil War, for the north, was initially about preserving the Union is irrelevant to the fact that for the Confederacy the war was to preserve slavery.

        • cer says:

          And as far as I know, no northern state has proposed to celebrate or otherwise officially acknowledge white supremacy. Indeed, slavery was an institution in the north and, appropriately, that is a point of embarrassment. Nor do I see a lot of celebrations of the civil war elsewhere as it is rightly seen as a pretty dark chapter in our history.

          I’d be willing to view this as something other than celebrating white supremacy and treason if, as has been pointed out, the celebration was not exclusively focused on an opposition government formed in order to protect a economic system built on slavery AND if these same states also had months acknowledging the abomination institution of slavery, the central role that slaves played in southern history and making emancipation a state holiday.

    • cleter says:

      Well, I think being a US military officer, and saying “screw you, America,” joining an anti-US army, and then trying to kill a bunch of US Army soldiers, and invading Pennsylvania, is pretty much a textbook definition of “treason.” I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure the oath to defend the US that officers like Longstreet and Lee swore did not have tiny print that said “Loyalty Oath void if Republican President Elected.”

  12. DP says:

    After the defeat of the South, the leaders of the rebellion should have been lined up and hanged. William Tecumseh Sherman was right. The Confederacy should have been ground into dust like the Romans did to Carthage. And then their land given to the freed slaves. But instead we have an elected official from the old Confederacy declaring that we should honor their heritage. Welcome to bizzaro world.

    • Socraticsilence says:

      Given the political makeup of Atlanta (heavily minority, overwhelmingly Democratic), I’ve always wondered why the municipal government didn’t respond to Georgia’s “Confederate History Month” by making “Sherman Day” an annual tradition.

    • rea says:

      After the defeat of the South, the leaders of the rebellion should have been lined up and hanged. William Tecumseh Sherman was right.

      That was not Sherman’s view at all. He almost lost his command at the end of the war for giving out too lenient surrender terms.

      • Mrs Tilton says:

        Yes, well, and Sherman’s views on Native Americans were also regrettable. Sometimes even Homer nods.

        Reconstruction — IT CAN STILL WORK!!!

    • Chris says:

      Yeah, because thoroughly humiliating the loser of a civil war always works out well, as the British can tell you from their experience in Ireland over the centuries (emphasis on over the centuries). While there may be a bunch of southerners in this country who, for some reason, are still bitter about the south losing and who long for the old southern lifestyle (that is, when black people weren’t treated as human beings), it’s a far cry from the end results of so many other civil wars, which is basically decades, even centuries, of civil war. And a big reason for the difference between the aftermath of those civil wars and ours is the way the former Confederates were treated in the immediate aftermath of the war. I don’t think Radical Reconstruction went far enough, and the Republicans seriously screwed the pooch with the Compromise of 1877, but at least we’re only still fighting our civil war in the minds of a few rednecks, and not in the streets.

      Treating the Confederates leniently was Lincoln’s idea, anyway.

      • Mrs Tilton says:

        thoroughly humiliating the loser of a civil war always works out well, as the British can tell you from their experience in Ireland

        Níor chogadh cathartha siúd.

      • dave3544 says:

        Wait, your argument is basically “Yeah, it’s pretty horrible that millions of black people lived for another century in an apartheid state, but at least white people weren’t killing each other!”

        I don’t think that’s what you can mean. Civil War is, indeed, bad, but I thought the whole point was that we were beginning to move past the old “It was a tragedy that should never have happened” point-of-view.

        It should have happened. Sooner. And more thoroughly.

        • Chris says:

          Dude, did you read my comment? If the fact that it was replying to a comment about the end of the war, and the fact that it mentioned reconstruction, which, you know, happened after the war, or starting out talking about humiliating the loser of a civil war (you know, losers aren’t losers until the end)weren’t clues enough that I was talking about the end of the war, then I don’t know what would be. Perhaps some reading skills training.

  13. Ed says:

    Those soldiers didn’t have to fight for that government and that cause, but they did.

    Soldiers go to war for their country in dubious causes all the time. It would be superfluous in me to point out that U.S. soldiers are currently fighting in two illegal wars. Because they are volunteers, one could argue that makes their participation all the more heinous. And if by some mischance the world should be caught up in another cataclysmic conflict, many young men and some women will find themselves fighting on one side or another just because of where they happened to be born.

    • Socraticsilence says:

      Did you miss Scott’s example of the Wermacht? Or do you think Nazi History month would be a good way for German’s to “celebrate their history”

    • dave3544 says:

      And your point is??

      I guess your point is that some young men and women get caught up fighting for their locality and shouldn’t be associated with the actual cause for which their locality’s government has chosen to go to war and it is perfectly okay for people who live in that same locality 150 years later to honor the government that these young men and women fought for because they weren’t necessarily fighting for the cause itself.

      Is that your point?

  14. Ed says:

    The Confederacy lost the war but won the history. And our country is worse off because of it.

    It would be more accurate to say that they lost the war and the story line about the war (the victors always write that), but for many years the Southern view of Reconstruction was widely accepted, even in history books for schoolchildren, and that didn’t change until the civil rights movement and corresponding revisionist histories.

    • DocAmazing says:

      As your second sentence points out, the victors did not write the history in the case of the Civil War, or we would not have had the “revisionist” history coming out with the civil rights movement. As to the story line of how the war was fought, it wasn’t until I was in college that I learned about Andersonville, the burning of Lawrence, Kansas and the other fun doings of Quantrill’s Raiders, and the Fort Pillow massacre, and I grew up in liberal, majority-minority Oakland. I can’t imagine what’s taught in, say, Texas.

  15. Socraticsilence says:

    Was looking into a thread on TIDOS month and I found maybe the single most intimidating quote on the Civil War I’ve ever seen:

    “If they want eternal war, well and good; we accept the issue, and will dispossess them and put our friends in their place. I know thousands and millions of good people who at simple notice would come to North Alabama and accept the elegant houses and plantations there. If the people of Huntsville think different, let them persist in war three years longer, and then they will not be consulted. Three years ago by a little reflection and patience they could have had a hundred years of peace and prosperity, but they preferred war; very well. Last year they could have saved their slaves, but now it is too late.

    All the powers of earth cannot restore to them their slaves, any more than their dead grandfathers. Next year their lands will be taken, for in war we can take them, and rightfully, too, and in another year they may beg in vain for their lives. A people who will persevere in war beyond a certain limit ought to know the consequences. Many, many peoples with less pertinacity have been wiped out of national existence.’”

    That’s an almost perfect distillation of American Self-Image for the last 200 years- slow to anger, but then insane.

  16. Ed says:

    And your point is??

    My point was the point I was making in response to other observations on Civil War history made in this thread. Sorry if you are unable to follow it. As I noted in one of the multiple previous threads on this subject, I don’t defend McDonnell’s idiocy and indeed have offered no defense of it.

    After the defeat of the South, the leaders of the rebellion should have been lined up and hanged.

    Indeed, in most countries they would have been. They got off easy.

  17. Mudge says:

    I am not inclined to give the common soldier of the Confederacy a break on his motivation. Most may not have owned slaves, but they lived in a culture that defined success as owning slaves and most aspired to that. Most soldiers grew up in areas where slaves lived and they were aware of the institution and its implications. The average Confederate soldier undoubtedly knew far more about slavery than the average Wehrmacht soldier knew about death camps, but every Wehrmacht soldier had to know that being Jewish in Germany led to bad endings.

  18. wengler says:

    The non-punishment of leaders of the Confederacy shows just how this country’s elite deals with internal problems: by doing absolutely nothing. You’ve lost your slaves poor dears, you surely have suffered enough.

    Those waiting for Bush and Cheney to get arrested should look to US history to your guide. They will both die fat, rich and free.

  19. JW says:

    Sherman’s bark was always worse than his bite. For crying out loud, he was prepared to allow Joe Johnston’s army to stack arms in the armories of their respective state capitals. Stanton and the cabinet were indignant, and Grant loyally travelled to North Carolina to ensure Sherman’s terms of surrender were withdrawn to spare his partner in command a public reprimand.

    As to the quote about repopulating the south? Consider that Sherman was a West Pointer. Most of the pro’s on either side understood that militarily the southern cause was doomed upon the fall of Vicksburg/Port Hudson. Afterwards, what hopes it retained for independence were grounded in the political sphere. Remember, too, the spectre of guerilla warfare loomed large in the thinking of Union leaders. Thus Lincoln’s admonition to “let ‘em up easy”. Thus Lee’s greatest moment– his acceptance of the amply generous terms of surrender. That noted, Sherman undoubtedly meant what he said about repopulating the south. He was a righteously furious man by 1864.

  20. CJColucci says:

    The ordinary Confederate soldier-Wermacht analogy doesn’t really work. It seems likely that neither the typical CSA soldier nor the typical Wermacht soldier would have, if given a choice in the matter, started a war. Their criminally-insane leaders having propagandized for one and started one, however, it is understandable that both would defend what they had been taught to believe was their country. That’s no reason for us to celebrate the Wermacht, though we can acknowledge, when pertinent, that they were fine, valiant soldiers. It is, however, rarely pertinent.
    But our war was a civil war and part of the aftermath of a civil war is reintegrating the losers into the restored common community. Part of doing that is to gloss over the original differences when talking about the common run of soldiers (as opposed to their criminally-insane leaders)and emphasize each side’s sincerity and valor. No point in us doing that about German soldiers, thought if there had been a war between East and West Germany before its reunification, there would be a great deal of point in reunified Germans doing that. Giving the grunts a pass on the justice of the cause for which they fought is part of the healing process.

    • Bobby Thomson says:

      No, it’s your criticism of the analogy that doesn’t work. Confederate History Month isn’t about honoring soldiers. It’s about honoring the Confederacy. It would be like the current German state observing a Wehrmacht History Month. Not only do they not do that, they actually ban the Nazi flag.

      In Germany (or anywhere else, for that matter), anyone with a Nazi flag on their car would be rightly ostracized as a supreme asshole. In America, people honoring the flag of the confederacy are “authentic” and “true” Americans. It’s true up is downism.

      • CJColucci says:

        I think you think we disagree about Confederate History Month. We don’t. I wasn’t defending CHM, but the proposition that acknowledging Johnny Reb even though the cause his leaders sent him to fight for was abominable — we seem to agree that CHM is not that — made sense.

  21. Larkspur says:

    Okay, some 15 years ago, I was hanging out with my younger cousin, his girlfriend, and a friend of theirs. Cousin’s girlfriend (not named Norah), who I’d met on other occasions, had very strong opinions about her family background and its historical context. Although Norah was born in the U.S., her parents were born in what is now Israel, and since they were non-Jewish Palestinians, they fled to the US. Norah identified herself as Palestinian. Fine.

    On that afternoon, the four of us thought it would be fun to go target shooting. I’d never fired a weapon of any sort and I was really curious. (We were kind of stupid, too. But not drunk.) So we went out to the coast, to a marshy area where we wouldn’t hit anyone or any critter, set up some bottles and cans, and started firing.

    So then Cousin’s friend hands me his rifle, and I look at it, and OMG, it’s a Mauser. And it has Nazi insignia on it! I was highly encreepified, because – Nazis! I said something like, “Oh jeepers, Nazis!” And Norah homed in on my remark in her typically testy way, saying “What’s the big deal? He’s German American. Doesn’t he have the right to celebrate his heritage, too?”

    Since we were all armed, I said, well, sure. But she was nuts. (Also, she was Semitic and Hitler would have hated her, too.) Some shit is just too fraught with pain and memory and loss. I’ve got German ancestors, too, and I have some German friends now, and they’re not guilty. But none of us feels inclined to celebrate the Third Fucking Reich. So on this occasion, Godwin can just stand down.

  22. Ed says:

    But our war was a civil war and part of the aftermath of a civil war is reintegrating the losers into the restored common community. Part of doing that is to gloss over the original differences when talking about the common run of soldiers (as opposed to their criminally-insane leaders)and emphasize each side’s sincerity and valor.

    Well, that was part of the aftermath of our Civil War,along with considerable bitterness, but in most other countries not only is there little effort at reintegration but wholesale massacres are not at all uncommon. Here everyone could agree to honor the courage of the fighting men on both sides, including the (military) leaders; in 1907 Charles Francis Adams, Jr. spoke by invitation on the occasion of Robert E. Lee’s centennial.

    In America, people honoring the flag of the confederacy are “authentic” and “true” Americans.

    Only to white supremacists and McDonnell, I imagine. Maybe Trent Lott. That said, it’s disheartening that the governor felt safe in making his proposal in the first place.

  23. JW says:

    “..We don’t want your negroes, or your horses, or your houses, or your lands, or any thing you have, but we do want and will have a just obedience to the laws of the United States.  That we will have, and, if it involves the destruction of your improvements, we cannot help it..”.

    W.T. Sherman, in response to the mayor and city counsel of Atlanta 09/12/64

    The interests of white America were very well served by northern willingness to acknowledge the courage of the confederate infantryman. The abolishment of slavery being relegated to an “inevitable consequence” of the war was an eminently reasonable one for that generation to subscribe. After all, hadn’t the martyred Lincoln himself denied any intention to interfere with the institution prior to Ft. Sumter? The vast majority of northerners did not fight to free slaves, but rather, to preserve the Union. Today’s confederate sympathizers wish to perpetuate that perception, that’s all. They strive to deny the unholy consequences of that bargain. Or worse, struggle to justify the institution itself.

  24. Matt T. says:

    For what it’s worth, my great-great-grandfather did not fight in the Confederate army (under William Faulkner’s grandfather, as it turns out) for slavery. He fought because otherwise the local magistrate would’ve hung him for being a horse thief.

  25. hv says:

    I propose that we have a month where we celebrate all of the history of the North entitled:

    “Hey! We sure kicked your ass that one time, didn’t we!”

  26. Ragout says:

    I so that no one’s blaming the Democrats, so let me be the first. The previous 2 Democratic Governors, to their credit, didn’t issue a Confederate History Month proclamation. But neither did they issue an alternative Civil War History Month proclamation celebrating the heritage of all Virginians, black and white, not just the ones who chose treason. Nor did they erect statues of Thomas or Scott or other Virginians who fought for the Union. Or if they did anything to start to reframe “heritage,” they didn’t do it loudly enough.

  27. John Protevi says:

    The vast majority of northerners did not fight to free slaves, but rather, to preserve the Union.

    At least some percentage of Union soldiers were drafted, weren’t they? Who knows the numbers here?

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