Why Was There a Civil War? – The Atlantic

Source: Why Was There a Civil War? – The Atlantic by Yoni Appelbaum

Some issues aren’t amenable to deal-making; some principles don’t lend themselves to compromise.

the Civil War was fought over slavery. “Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery—the greatest material interest of the world,” Mississippi declared as it seceded. “The people of the slave holding States are bound together by the same necessity and determination to preserve African slavery,” said Louisiana. “The servitude of the African race, as existing in these States, is mutually beneficial to both bond and free, and is abundantly authorized and justified by the experience of mankind, and the revealed will of the Almighty Creator, as recognized by all Christian nations,” insisted Texas.

There are some conflicts that a leader cannot suppress, no matter how strong he may be; some deals that should not be struck, no matter how alluring they may seem. This was the great moral truth on which the Republican Party was founded.