As a Civil War writer I have mixed feelings on this issue in spades. The South contary to its claims has never possessed a democratic mindset, and its cause was abysmal. On the other hand racism was almost as rampant on both sides as it is today, and Norther soldiers who actual fought the Rebels held their opponent soldiers in high regard for their fighting spirit and valor.

The Constitution never resolved the slavery issue. It took, alas, a most bloody civil war of 600,000 dead Americans to do that. Like it has been said many times, “war is politics by other means. Let’s just hope America doesn’t have to repeat that process. The war is quite fascinating in theory, but in reality it is just plain god awful.

Jim Ridgway, Jr. military writer — author of the American Civil War classic, “Apprentice Killers: The War of Lincoln and Davis.” Christmas gift, yes!

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