We begin our lesson with Abraham Lincoln, the first ever "Republican" president. The quotations are used to suggest he wasn't a Republican by the modern definition. He was without a doubt the most actively liberal president we've ever had. But whether you want to call him a Republican or not, he is the origin of the party.
Lincoln was elected president in 1860. By the end of the year, South Carolina had seceded the nation in protest. And that's fine. Every state can do that. It's the United States of America- it was built on the principal of individual states that choose to be united but don't have to, and hence, can secede at any time free of charge. By the end of January, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana had all followed. This was fine too. As was Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina all hopping the boat out of the U-States by the end of May. And as a member of the United States, there was no problem that
they were leaving. It was why
they were leaving that was so hysterical.
The reason for their leaving is this: they loved ownership of black people. This is less fine than the fact that they left, but it's fact nonetheless so we'll discuss it. More than anything, it was just the power they felt in the ownership of a human being, because financially, slaves were a terrible investment. They cost quite a bit to purchase, had to be shipped over, constantly fed and health maintained, and then they didn't really work for you- because whether they did or not, it wasn't improving their situation any. I wouldn't have worked hard either. It turns out, hiring a guy to do the work for money is a better investment. Thus, the only motivation of keeping slaves, is the thrill of owning a human being as property. "Chattel." It's their elegant property term they threw around enough to have it make the constitution.
The occupants of these states need this thrill- and along comes President Abraham Lincoln, threatening to take it away. So these eleven states form the Confederate States of America. Read that again. Notice that we're not the Unite States of America. This grammar is taught to kinders and re-enforced at the first grade level. "Confederated," not "Confederate." Eleven states of literary geniuses could not collectively name their country within the rules of proper english. This is embarrassing. Still marginally less embarrassing than the fact that it was approaching the 20th century and Chattel ownership was being demanded.
This embarrassment, coupled with a certain level of obscure aggression, drove Lincoln to weirdly enforce his violent liberal doctrine: burn down every slave state. These states were constitutionally entitled to leave, and they started to. But Lincoln decided not to let them. We should all wish he had, but he didn't. He ordered them back in while burning down their villages in the process. This is weird.
A month and a day after they finish their new "Confederate States" constitution- which you can't expect much from given they they didn't even have a legitimate name- they're in the civil war. A year and a half into it, Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation- the free the slaves bill. Considered to be an extremely important piece of American history. And it's hilarious because it was nothing more than a pointless slap in the face to the South. It pissed off the South by publicly attacking their politics while freeing a grand total of zero slaves. It declared all people who were not slaves, free. Not one slave has yet benefited from this bill.
But despite their added aggression, we all know they lost, as unfortunate as that is. If they had one, we would still have a poverty-stricken Confederate States of America where you could go to buy things made of hemp with a Tiajuana-esque appeal. But lo and behold the North won, and the U.S. continued to allow the South to vote.
This is a problem.
It's a problem because still today, they hold unusually massive grudges against non-racists. I realize that's a fairly bold statement, so I assume I'm going to have to prove it with more than the still-annual Civil War reenactments. But before I talk further on this subject, if you're from the south, please please stop these little skits, they're an embarrassment to all human beings. Okay, further grudge evidence is this: Abraham Lincoln was a Republican by name. So the South votes Democrat straight across the board for a century. 100 year grudge. It doesn't matter who was running, so long as the Republican didn't win. I might have voted the same way if a Republican burned down my home and killed my whole extended family, but something even more powerful than this occurred 50 years ago that reversed the voting of the South 180 degrees. They went from pure Democrat to pure Republican at the onset of one piece of legislation: The Civil Rights Act of 1965- written by the Democrats, opposed by the Republicans. Opposed with such force and uproar, it's nauseating.
And guess what? Still today the Confederate States are all Republican. Why? Because they oppose civil rights. If there's some other reason, please tell me. Because documented history proves that there is not. The Civil Rights Act caused the biggest turn-around ever in political history, and nothing to date has challenged it or even caused it to sway to any degree. I don't know what else to say. Nothing on earth can prove otherwise. I'm speechless when people try. They think they can counter history with words.
So the general conclusion is as follows.
Abraham Lincoln had the general idea of a progressive: slavery, racism, and inequality are bad. Positive change is good. But he went about it like a complete fool with no regard for the founding principles of the nation. So if you want to call him your Republican hero, be my guest. But the fact remains he was an awful president who was incredibly liberal. And his progressive activism truly set the distinction between the two party system that's as distinct now as it ever was. And in this two party system, we have racism and grudges still today guiding the southern vote, and therefore the predominant Republican vote.
I do hope you can enjoy your G.W. for now though- elected out of the heart of the Confederacy. It's the next best thing to Jefferson Davis. But while enjoying him, think about what the facts actually tell you.
The Civil War had tons of causes, I'm not sure you can sum it up as: Lincoln didn't feel like letting them leave.
Although that's not a question- if it were, I would answer "yes," assuming it was a yes or no question. Lincoln would have vetoed the legislation of Congress if the answer was no. This is why I made your statement into a yes or no question. It helps my argument. On July 22nd, 1861 (i.e. in the early stages of the war) Congress declared that the war was to "preserve the Union." Notice the quotations. I'm not drawing conclusions. Congress made it known that the war was not in reference to slavery or any cause other than removal of the state's independent right to leave. Curious. Now you can argue that the behavior of the South was so embarrassing that Lincoln wanted to hostilely reprimand them, which fueled Congress to vote in favor of taking away their right to leave. But that's my point.
You say that the only reason the South is still solid Republican is because of the opposition to civil rights- but since the late 90's, religion has become a major political issue and this appears to dictate much of the southern vote- wouldn't you agree?
"Wouldn't you agree?" Good way to mold it into a question. A yes or no question even. No. That's my answer to your question. Civil rights is the reason, religion is the scape goat. I feel this is rather obvious, and being religious myself, kind of offensive. These states have overwhelming support for war, gun control, the death penalty, and obviously unequal rights. These are the four main issues that they argue about. Which of them is biblical? I feel extremely blasphemous when I try to picture a rifle-wielding Jesus killing black people, and now Middle-Easterners. So as I said before, I feel it's quite offensive and obvious what place religion plays in southern politics.