I remember a time when the truth used to mean something. My father used to always tell me that a man is judged by whether or not he tells the truth; that liars are untrustworthy and the act of telling a lie is despicable. Have we, as a nation, become so accustomed to lying that it no longer bothers us? Has the act of lying become so prevalent that we rarely give it any notice? Or, is it that we prefer lies rather than the truth because sometimes the truth makes us feel uncomfortable?
When you enter into a courtroom as a witness you typically have to take an oath to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. While that does not prevent people from lying under oath, it is supposed to ensure that when discussing the facts of a particular case only the truth is told, not rumors, not innuendos, and not hearsay.
Do you know how frustrating it is trying to have a conversation with people when you come armed with facts and evidence and the person you are talking to only has emotional rants and hearsay to support their side of the debate?
How are we to survive, to thrive, to interact when we are not sure that what we are being told is the truth or a lie? Why bother having discussions with people when you cannot be sure that you are being told the truth? I can fully understand that people get emotional about issues; I’m emotional about the things I believe in. But if you are going to support an issue, a cause, or a belief; then at least have some facts to support your position.
Using my courtroom analogy, not having facts to present in a case would be grounds for dismissal of the charges against a person. Therefore if you cannot provide facts…TRUTHS… to back up your opinion then your opinion should be dismissed as irrational or illegitimate. Why should I, or anyone else for that matter, give anything you say any credence when you cannot back up your statements with facts?
Hmmm, I’m waiting for an answer…
Yet people constantly disregard me and what I have to say simply because someone else told them differently. People have lost the ability to weigh facts against each other and come to a conclusion based upon the weight of the evidence provided by both sides in a discussion or argument. Yet these are the same people we trust as jurors to decide our futures if/when we are brought up on charges and find ourselves defendants in a court of law. That ought to scare the hell out of you.
You would think (a thing which too few people actually do) that in a world in which lying has become so prevalent that their ability to discern the truth would become more keen, honed to a razors edge. Unfortunately the opposite is true, people are less able to see the truth hiding amidst all the lying going on. A person who cannot discern the truth, reject it because it is uncomfortable or conflicts with previously held beliefs is a person who is ripe for deception. A nation filled with people who reject the truth are a people who are easily misled and taken advantage of. When you let your emotions or your personal prejudices block your ability to process the truth, then you are a person who has lost the ability to think; it is that simple. You might believe that what you do is called thinking, and on some level it may be, but if you are working with faulty information then the end result of that thought process is going to be faulty as well. If your thought process evaluates and considers lies then the conclusion you come to will be a lie. If your thought process evaluates truths then your conclusion will be truthful.
What most people believe about the history of their country and its system of government is a lie; fed to them over the course of their lives by people who do not want them to; a) know the truth, and b) be capable of critical thought. If you do not know the truth, or have been conditioned not to care about it, then you are easily controlled and your rights violated. If you cannot think critically, to evaluate facts and evidence, then you have a hard time distinguishing between the truth and a lie; and once again you are easily controlled and your rights violated.
It’s a win-win situation for them and a losing situation for you.
Take for instance the Civil War. If you were to walk into a room full of people and ask them to tell you why our nation fought the Civil War; what answer/s do you think you’d get? I can tell you how they would answer; the people would tell you the Civil War was fought over slavery.
Is that the truth or is it a lie? Well let’s examine the facts.
Did slavery exist in the United States? Yes it did; both in the Southern States AND the North.
Did Abraham Lincoln say that he was raising an army to free the slaves? No he did not. In fact, Lincoln made many comments saying that he had no desire to interfere with the institution of slavery. In his Inaugural Address Abraham Lincoln stated, “I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.”
In a letter written to Horace Greeley on August 22, 1862 Lincoln stated, “I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause.”
Those two quotes ought to be sufficient to show that Lincoln did not take the country to war against the Confederacy to put an end to the institution of slavery. And if anything, you have to understand that the Civil War was fought ONLY because Abraham Lincoln raised an army to prevent the South from seceding from the Union. Had Lincoln not raised an army to invade the South there would not have been a Civil War; it’s that simple. The South seceded in peace and would have existed alongside the North in peace had Lincoln not invaded it with an army.
But what about the Emancipation Proclamation Neal, didn’t that free the slaves? In answer to your question I must first ask you to re-read Lincoln’s words to Horace Greeley where he said, “What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union…”
Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was a political and war time maneuver issued to help achieve his goals of forcing the Confederacy back into the Union. You have been conditioned to believe that it was his crowning achievement, making him worthy of damned near sainthood, but it was simply a political tool to further his goals.
It also prevented foreign intervention in the war. At one point Britain and France had considered becoming involved in the Civil War…on the side of the Confederacy. When Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation that shifted to focus of the war from one in which Lincoln was fighting to preserve the Union to one which was being fought to end slavery. After the Emancipation Proclamations Europeans were hesitant to involve themselves in a war in which the apparent goal was the eradication of slavery.
Remember Lincoln’s words, “What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union…” Everything Lincoln did was to hold the Union together, whether it be his actions regarding slavery, or his authorization for his military commanders to wage brutal campaigns; scorching the earth and burning entire valleys to the ground. Lincoln would do whatever it took to force the Confederacies compliance to his will.
But you say, “But Neal, the South seceded because they feared Lincoln would free the slaves and they wanted to keep their slaves.”
Is that so?
Have you ever heard of the Corwin Amendment? I didn’t think so. I also don’t think you’ll bother to Google it, so let me tell you what it was. The Corwin Amendment was a Constitutional Amendment that was introduced into Congress by Thomas Corwin. Ironically, it was introduced into Senate hearings by Senator William Seward, who would go on to become Abraham Lincoln’s Secretary of State.
The Corwin Amendment passed, I repeat PASSED both houses of Congress and was on its way to the State Legislatures for their consideration when the Civil War broke out.
The text of the Corwin Amendment reads, “No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State.”
What that means is that no State could have proposed a Constitutional Amendment which banned slavery, and Congress would forever be prohibited from enacting laws which banned slavery. In short, it would have made slavery a permanent institution in the United States. To pass Congress it had to have support from members of Congress from the North; yet people say the Civil War was fought to end slavery? Why would they fight a war to end something they had just proposed a Constitutional Amendment to make permanent?
Lincoln was aware of the Corwin Amendment; he even supported its adoption. In fact, going back to Lincoln’s Inaugural Address, we read, “I understand a proposed amendment to the Constitution—which amendment, however, I have not seen—has passed Congress, to the effect that the Federal Government shall never interfere with the domestic institutions of the States, including that of persons held to service. To avoid misconstruction of what I have said, I depart from my purpose not to speak of particular amendments so far as to say that, holding such a provision to now be implied constitutional law, I have no objection to its being made express and irrevocable.”
Congress had just passed a resolution proposing a Constitutional Amendment to make slavery permanent in the United States; the President of the United States says he supports passage of this amendment, and YOU still have the audacity to say that the North fought to free the slaves. Why would they risk war to do something they were all in favor of making a permanent institution? That’s like me buying my wife a bunch of yellow clothes then telling her I’m going to kick her ass because she is wearing yellow; it makes no sense whatsoever.
Yet still there will be those who stand behind Abraham Lincoln as this great humanitarian who was the champion of the slaves and put an end to slavery. Do people even know what Lincoln thought about black people? Do they know how bigoted he was?
In 1858, before being elected as president, Lincoln held debates with his opponent Stephen Douglass. In one of his speeches at Charleston, Illinois, dated September 18, 1858, Abraham Lincoln said the following words, “I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races, [applause]—that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”
Those aren’t MY words, they are the words of the man YOU are defending as a great humanitarian; as the Great Emancipator.
Yet you call me, after all the evidence, all the truths I have provided, a racist because I support the cause of the Confederacy and display the Confederate Battle Flag with pride.
Fifty some odd years after the end of the Civil War, Woodrow Wilson, said the following, “The role of slavery became the proclaimed cause of the Civil War because it was necessary to put the South at a moral disadvantage by transforming the contest from a war for independence into a war for the maintenance and extension of slavery.”
You have been conditioned, brainwashed, lied to about the Civil War and its causes. All this outrage over anything Southern, anything displaying the Confederate Battle Flag is based upon faulty information. In short, you have been used, lied to, and manipulated into having an emotional reaction opposing a legitimate fight for independence. You may as well have the same sentiments towards Thomas Jefferson who had the audacity to write a Declaration telling the King of England “…That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved…”
After all, that is all the Southern States told the federal government when they seceded from the Union; that they too had the right to be free and independent states.
But I know people; I know how they act and how they think. They are going to go on believing whatever they want to believe; and that no amount of evidence to the contrary is going to change their opinions.
Which just goes to show you that the truth really doesn’t matter anymore…
But you will not stop me from standing for, and speaking it whenever the opportunity arises. I take equal pride in speaking the truth and displaying this…