Editor: I would like to address the erroneous comments made by Mr. Bob Lasher in his letter published in the Sept. 14, 2017, in the Seminole Beacon.
First, the Confederate leaders did not take up arms against United States as traitors. During the ratification process of the Constitution, all states were considered to be on equal footing. No state could claim to have a power or privilege other states did not have.
New York state in its ratification notes “That the powers of government may be reassumed by the people whensoever it shall become necessary to their happiness; that every power, jurisdiction, and right … remains to the people….” Virginia’s ratification noted … “powers granted under the Constitution, being derived from the people of the United States may be resumed by them whensoever the same shall be perverted to their injury or oppression ….”
Both ratifications were accepted by the convention; therefore, all states had the right of succession by the equal footing doctrine and Lincoln, as a lawyer, was well aware of this right. It is clear that Lincoln and the northern states were the ones who committed treason against their own Constitution.
Second, the South did not have to fight to preserve slavery. Lincoln and the Republicans offered Constitution amendments guaranteeing slave labor in the South forever. However, this gambit was not about slavery, it was about the continued dominance of the South through a highly imbalanced tax and business contract laws favorable to Northern interest.
Lincoln’s big problem was not slavery, but the pending financial crash of the nation. He desperately needed the South’s agricultural products since they were the only exports that could generate income and wealth.
He had two choices. He could either lead Congress to revise the unfavorable laws against the South which would generate the wealth to pay various Northern interest debts or he could simply implement his second option to keep the domination in place by illegal force.
Unfortunately, the first action would also free the South from Northern economic domination and stop the lucrative Northern slave trade tax income to the United States. Lincoln took what he thought was the easy way out; he chose force.
Third, the Northern POW camps were the death camps. Camp Douglas in Chicago was notorious for forced starvation, no winter heating, no winter clothing, little or no medical care, and torture as punishment for minor infractions. The abuses of this camp commandant and most other Northern POW camps are well documented.
In Andersonville, the guards ate what the prisoners ate; and had no better clothing or medical care than the POWs. Gen. Hood offered free passage to Gen. Sherman to collect the Union prisoners as the South had little food or transportation for them. Sherman refused. The death rate in the Northern POW camps was much high than the Southern POW camps. These truths are also well documented.