Many remember the playing of”Dixie,” the standard-bearer of the white South, on the streets of Birmingham, Alabama, during the 1960s; this city is where lots of the worst and most violent Civil Rights Movement protests happened. The South was preoccupied with their deep losses during the Civil War. This preoccupation wasn’t unlike that of Nazi Germany, after Germany’s deep losses during WWI, before the Nazis were formed. Largely, such as the Nazis, the pre-Civil War South had severe economic issues. Seven immigrants from eight from other countries settled into the northern United States, and twice as many whites left the South for the North as the ones heading in another direction.
There were deep-seated controversies over incorporating the slave state of Missouri into the Union, the acquisition of Texas as a slave state in 1845, and Manifest Destiny being used as an argument for gaining new territories where slavery would become an issue, which largely occurred following the much less devastating Mexican-American War of 1846-1848. Meanwhile, the extremely popular anti-slavery novel,”Rat Removal Port St. Lucie FL,” by Harriet Beecher Stowe in 1852 helped increase northern opposition to the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, which was created to recapture escapees.
During this period, many looked for a compromise, such as with some of those states”free” and a few remaining”servant,” or maybe allowing the expansion of slavery for a few more years.
The best known of these attempts is the Crittenden Compromise. It was an unsuccessful proposal by Kentucky Senator John J. Crittenden, which attempted to resolve the secession crisis of 1860-1861. It addressed the concerns that were leading to secession, containing a preamble, six proposed Constitutional Amendments, and four proposed Congressional resolutions. But both the House and the Senate rejected it in 1861, as it was seen as making too heavy of concessions to the South. President Lincoln stopped it cold, because he had been chosen primarily for opposing the expansion of slavery, and the South’s response to this rejection led almost immediately to the Civil War.
In short, every effort to compromise failed. Slavery was neither simple to resolve, nor was it a problem that would”go away.” The South stubbornly and steadfastly maintained the belief that slavery was a needed thing, and they wouldn’t stop until they had their ways about it. It might require firmer actions on their part, but largely, they oriented toward taking it out on”the Negro,” who was supposed to warrant such treatment.
“He” was their favorite scapegoat, whom they blamed for the Confederacy having lost the war, even after an untold number of black soldiers had died on the South’s side, fighting for them. They also bombed black people’s homes, businesses and churches, threatening the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this way dozens of times.
They especially wanted to oppress the blacks, since they were perceived as”troublemakers,” too inferior to be perceived as”real men and women.” Dr. King’s and many other people’s popular term for black people during his times was”Negros,” and it had been qualified how Negro people felt about themselves and their lives.
During the 1960s, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover ordered Dr. King to be followed around by listening devices, with all his places of inhabitants being”bugged,” and several of his personal life statements were put on tape. Howsoever, just before King’s assassination, many black men or Negros wore signs which boldly stated,”I am a Man” during their protests. They were promoting the notion that they were people, rather than animals, as they’d been labeled during the slavery period.
In any event, many such black men fought and died passionately for the South during the Civil War for a variety of reasons, including many unique opinions about slavery and how the overall structure of it should be handled. Also, many such slaves grew up in close circumstances with their white masters, and were actually loyal buddies. Their actual circumstances are tough to fathom, but they didn’t wish to see the depravity and degradation that would occur should the South lose. Sometimes, slavery was not an entire evil, as some masters were conciliatory, so this caused much factionalism. But overall, it is thought these black men were attempting to help the white South and impress them with their raw courage and extreme perseverance against all odds.
Frequently, both southern slave and freedmen blacks and their northern counterparts fought with intense ferocity, leaping into the fray even when their jobs did not entail a soldier’s duty. To begin with, the snowy North was reluctant to use them, and it took a long time to find the Union Army to accept black troops. They did not need them such as the South, where nearly a third of the population was now black. For another, the white southern attitudes which were extremely pro-slavery meant blacks were supposed to be indolent, permissive and docile. When southern black cooks, bottle-washers and horse tenders leapt gladly into battle with cries such as”Fo’ Massa!” And”Give it to’em boys – give’em Hell!” for their side of the gruesome fray, whites were shocked, impressed – and appalled.
This caused the development right after the war of many groups of white folks who wanted to oppress, subjugate and control the expanding black southern population. The most famous of these groups was the Ku Klux Klan, which of course hid their practices under many other names as well, as they were an illegal and secret society of white racial supremacists, which had been shaped up immediately following the South lost in the Civil War. The original idea behind the KKK, or Klan as they are often called, was to”avenge” the losses of the white South – by taking them out on Black Americans.