John Kelly says the Civil War was started over a “lack of compromise.” Historians say it was slavery.

John Kelly says the Civil War was started over a “lack of compromise.” Historians say it was slavery.
John Kelly says the Civil War was started over a “lack of compromise.” Historians say it was slavery.

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34 Comments

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bdog2g2 · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Former S. Carolinian here.

Our lil letter of Succession mentioned slavery 23 times. But yea…sure it wasn’t about slavery. We just wanted to play the “slavery game” to see how many times we could sneak that word in.

IPlayAtThis · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

The institution of a compromise on slavery occurred with the signing of the Constitution. Every state added to the Union represented an additional compromise. Those compromises are what eventually led to the Civil War. It’s a conflict built on compromise.

boredatw0rk_ · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Better headline: “Everyone else says it was slavery”

Because it fucking was

MostlyCarbonite · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Not according to the articles of secession that the states drafted. Something like 10 out of 11 said “yeah and also it’s because slavery”

gdex86 · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Here is how every conversation with confederate apologists goes about the civil war.

Apologist: “The Civil war wasn’t about Slavery, it was about (Issue X)”

Sane Person: “It was about (Issue X) as it related to slavery”

Historians: “That’s mostly correct.”

Fill in as needed with states rights, power of the federal government, economics, and now compromise.

HappyGoPink · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

To be fair, the South did want the North to compromise, and give them everything they wanted. And what they wanted was no restrictions on slavery in the West. The issue of slavery in the newly forming states was the proximal cause of the war, not the imminent dissolution of slavery in the South. So yeah, there was a lack of compromise. Ironically, the fact that they forced the issue ended slavery in the South a lot sooner that it might have otherwise.

twojs1b · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

I think he was referring to the lack of party cooperation with this current Congress. Guess he doesn’t remember how the last 8 years of the foot stomping breath holding do nothing representatives acted.

freakincampers · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

The South said it was slavery.

DJTHatesPuertoRicans · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

For fucks sake, even the Confederacy government said it was slavery.

ruiner8850 · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

> It was always loyalty to state first back in those days. Now it’s different today. But the lack of an ability to compromise led to the Civil War. And men and women of good faith on both sides made their stand where their conscience had to make their stand

Fucking disgusting. No, if you are fighting to keep other humans enslaved so you can rape, torture, separate them from their families, etc. then you aren’t a person of good faith and you lack a conscience. The fact that he thinks that they should have compromised on slavery is appalling. There’s no room for compromising on slavery.

Nethius · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

WW2 was also started over a “lack of compromise” .

Ask10101 · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

“War of Northern Agression”

MIIAIIRIIK · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

So the slaves would have been part time slaves instead.

burgoin · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

I love how they use racism as a smoke screen. That’s F’d up.

alvarezg · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

There can be no compromise on slavery or despotism.

willief · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

I think he was referring to the pending civil war.

coffeespeaking · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

And I say this topic is settled history and an intentional media circus to distract form the TAX BILL due tomorrow and the INDICTMENTS. Let it drop, and focus on the present.

frygod · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

It was about a lack of compromise… The northern and southern states were unwilling to find middle ground on whether it was acceptable to own a human being.

dixadik · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

He’s right, the Union didn’t quite feel like putting up with the Confederacy bullshit regarding slavery

Pm-bitcoinsssss · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Isn’t every war caused by lack of compromise? What a meaningless statement.

Randvek · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

It was definitely started over a lack of compromise. Lack of compromise ABOUT SLAVERY.

Sgt_Kowalski · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Well, it was primarily economic causes that lead to the lack of compromise, namely lack of compromise over states’ rights. Which rights in particular, you ask? Self determination. Self determination in what regard? The ability to fucking own people as property. Said ownership formed the basis of the Southern economy, without which it could not function, and therefore there was a lack of compromise…second verse same as the first.

No matter which stupid argument you use to say the Civil War was about something else, it all boils down to slavery.

Sheev-Palputin · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

I guess the [Cornerstone Speech](https://www.ucs.louisiana.edu/~ras2777/amgov/stephens.html) was wrong about their own motivations, then.

>Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner- stone rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery — subordination to the superior race — is his natural and normal condition.

anononomy · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

How can a former general not know anything about the Civil War? It’s not very likely. He’s become a troll adopting the same lying ways of Trump and others in his administration.

an_african_swallow · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

So let’s call it a lack of compromise about slavery then, well yea of course not what would have been the compromise there? “We get to keep our slaves but we won’t whip them as much.” Fuck this guy

Hellmark · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

It was a lack of compromise. The South Wanted Slavery, and the North didn’t, so they went to war over it. /s

Seriously, what the fuck is up with these idiots? Why should this be a difficult thing. Slavery bad. Slavery wasn’t the only reason for the Civil War, but god damn, all the other reasons don’t even come close to Slavery. Slavery is the top damn reason.

KrakenWarg · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Well the Missouri Compromise is one of the events that led to the Civil War, which was a compromise about free states and slave states. This led to arguments about states rights, which all eventually goes back to the issue of slavery. If Kelly were saying this on a high school history test or something, I’d say he would get partial credit. To say that the Civil War was started due to slavery alone would also not be entirely correct. It was started over a lack of compromise of slavery and states rights.

vkashen · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

That jarhead sold his fucking soul.

Jay_Sharp · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

I can’t tell if he is genuinely ignorant about basic US history or attempting to steal coverage away from the indictment of Trump campaign officials by saying crazy shit.

NotAKentishMan · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Let’s not start questioning an ex 4 star general….

EpicusMaximus · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

Actually, the north in general didn’t really give a fuck, there were plenty of slave owners in the north when the war started.

Slavery was a huge market force. As with all things follow the money. A divide was forming between plantation owners of the south and business owners of the north. Allowing slavery to grow westward would have given the south a huge market advantage, and eventually political power.

If the war were about slavery, it would have been abolished from the beginning. Lincoln gave the emancipation proclamation to tap into the very-large-and-growing black population to help the war effort. It encouraged slaves in the south to revolt and help the Northern armies. It also encouraged newly freed slaves in the north to join the cause.

Slavery was a huge factor in the civil war starting, but the true cause was money. I’d like to think that “the good guys won”, but I’ve seen my fair share of people in northern states who prefer slavery.

p.s. I should add that slavery was a growing issue in politics at the time and it is very likely emancipation would have happened around the time it did anyways.

Shr3kk_Wpg · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

To be fair to Kelly, the Civil War was a result of the failure of the northern and southern states to work out a compromise over slavery. I am no Cival War historian, but my recollection is that the southern states wanted to maintain an equal number of slave-owning states and emancipated states. This way the Senate would never pass legislation banning slavery.

Nowhere on Kelly’s comments did he defend slavery or the Confederacy

tex0812 · November 1, 2017 at 9:56 am

To me, the idea of slavery being the cause of the Civil War is looking at the war through rose colored glasses. The horrors of slavery were certainly a part of the north rallying around the war, but financial concerns were certainly the root of the issue- slavery could be looked at as the key financial concern for the south, but there were other factors included in that calculation. Lincoln himself was a racist, didn’t believe in equal rights or even citizenship for blacks, didn’t make slavery a clear goal of the war until 3 years into it, and even said he would keep slavery to preserve the union.

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