The state's right to do what? Own slaves!
I guess you will ignore the tariffs right? Or that confederates were willing to give up slavery for secession? Or that Lincoln cared less about the slaves and just wanted to preserve the union? HOW AND WHY ABRAHAM LINCOLN STARTED THE WAR OF NORTHERN AGGRESSION TO PROTECT HIS OWN POLITICAL CAREER
The war was fought over Southern independence, not over slavery. Lincoln said repeatedly the war was not being fought over slavery. In August 1862, over a year after the war started, Lincoln wrote an open letter to a prominent Republican abolitionist, Horace Greeley, in which he said he did not agree with those who would only “save” the Union if they could destroy slavery at the same time. Lincoln added that if he could “save” the Union without freeing a single slave, he would do so (Letter to Horace Greeley, August 22, 1862, published in the New York Tribune).
In July 1861, after the First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run) had been fought, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution, by an overwhelming majority, that declared the war was not being fought to disturb slavery, nor to subjugate the South, but only to “maintain the Union” (i.e., to force the Southern states back into the Union). A few months later, in September, a group of Radicals visited Lincoln to urge him to make compulsory emancipation a war objective. Lincoln declined, telling the Radicals, “We didn’t go into the war to put down slavery, but to put the flag back” (Brodie, Thaddeus Stevens, p. 155; Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 75-76). Later on, about halfway through the war, the Radicals and other Republicans succeeded in making the uncompensated abolition of Southern slavery a secondary goal of the war. However, the primary purpose of the federal invasion was always to destroy Southern independence.
The war itself really had nothing directly to do with slavery. It’s true that issues involving slavery were the most important factors behind the first wave of secession, but secession and the war were two separate events, and four of the Southern states did not secede over slavery. As noted earlier, secession was a peaceful, democratic process. The seceded states posed no threat to the federal government, and they had no intention of trying to overthrow the government. The Confederate states wanted to live in peace with the North and offered to pay their share of the national debt and to pay compensation for all federal forts in the South.
To most Southerners, independence was more important than the continuation of slavery. This is not surprising, since less than 10 percent of Southern citizens actually held title to slaves, and since 69-75 percent of Southern families did not own slaves (John Niven, The Coming of the Civil War: 1837-1861, Arlington Heights, Illinois: Harlan Davidson, Inc., 1990, p. 34; Divine et al, editors, America Past and Present, p. 389; see also the 1860 Census). Early in the war, James Alcorn, a powerful planter-politician from Mississippi, began to talk openly about emancipation. Duncan Kenner, one of the most powerful slaveholders in the South and a chairman in the Confederate Congress, urged that slavery be abolished. Robert E. Lee, the Confederacy’s most famous general, believed slavery was evil and favored gradual emancipation. The Confederate secretary of state, Judah Benjamin, and Governor William Smith of Virginia, also supported ending slavery. By late 1864, Jefferson Davis himself was prepared to abolish slavery in order to gain European diplomatic recognition and thus save the Confederacy, which shows that independence was more important to him than preserving slavery.
This post was edited on 11/25 at 11:21 am