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How Constitutional Developments Amounted to American Civil War

America experienced one of the greatest revolutions in the second half of the nineteenth century. The revolutionary changes aimed at overcoming the traditionally accepted premise that whites could win blacks as slaves. In the mid-nineteenth century, American sovereignty expanded rapidly following the admission of new states. Such a situation amounted to constant constitutional conflict, triggering the American Civil War caused by the social, political, and economic disagreements on slavery. The political confrontation between the Northern and Southern states resulted in the American Civil War, defined as a fight between states loyal to the Union and states that had seceded. Ultimately, the civil war made the United States experience some constitutional and social developments. Some of the factors that set the stage for the American Revolution included the cessation of the South, ratifications of the amendments, Lincoln’s assassination, and the rise of racial groups, such as the KKK club.

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The first and most critical constitutional development that caused a revolution during the timeframe was the South Carolina secession. The Southern states remained assured it was their constitutional right to own slaves, believing that the right was permanent. During this period, Lincoln was elected as the president, and his crucial manifesto was to eliminate slavery. In this regard, the Southern states felt threatened that their slave-holding rights would come to an end. As a contingency measure, they seceded from the Union, although their actions were unconstitutional. The primary reason why the Southerners wanted to become a nation was the establishment of the Freedman’s Bureau, which started to restore the lives of former black slaves. Thus, the Southern states wanted to detach from the Union to continue exercising some of their powers.

Another constitutional development that caused a revolution was the ratification of the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments. Lincoln’s 13th amendment was the primary vehicle for revolution as it permanently abolished slavery. A typical stance of the 13th amendment indicated that: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall exist within the United States.” Thus, slavery was regarded only as criminal punishment and freed blacks from the bondage experienced for nearly 150 years. Abolishment destroyed the entire way of life of the Southern states since they had personalized slavery. Thus, although the Southern states formed reconstruction governments to deal with the freed slaves, they faced continued challenges due to the powerful Freedman’s Bureau act. Under this instrument, Congress decided to cater to black people’s welfares by providing supply for basic needs, ensuring black equality, and protecting blacks’ rights. Additionally, it passed the 14th Amendment, also known as the Reconstruction Act, which granted blacks the right to vote much as whites. Another critical act was the 15th Amendment which, solidified blacks’ rights to vote. These constitutional developments increased the Southerner’s resistance and triggered a revolution.

A critical social development that elicited the conflict was the assassination of Abraham Lincoln in 1865. He was the American Civil War leader who was against slavery. The president had aggravated animosity with the Southern states because he had refused to honor their demands. Lincoln was murdered by white supremacists and a confederate sympathizer John Booth. The killer was a staunch believer in slavery, arguing that the only way to avenge on behalf of the Southern states was to kill President Lincoln. Booth was against the rights to vote and own property given to African Americans who had served in the Union Army. Lincoln never lived to achieve his dream goals of the reconstruction era. Instead, his successor Andrew Johnson assumed office and readmitted Southern states under lenient measures. Thus, new governments formed in the Southern states enacted “black codes,” which further repressed the freed slave population. Thus, African Americans had little choice but to continue living in repression with their rights undermined, which caused further confrontation in the late 19th century.

Another crucial social development that prompted the revolution was the rise of racial groups, such as the KKK club, which was established in 1865 to reverse Reconstruction Era activities in the South. The organization rapidly grew as a paramilitary force dominated by the whites to reverse policies that elevated African Americans’ rights. During this period, the idea of racial superiority was popularized, suggesting that blacks do not deserve similar rights and privileges as whites. The racist formation deployed violence, intimidation, terrorist raids, murder, and property destruction to achieve its aim. These events made Congress establish the Ku Klux Act, declaring similar social groups illegal. Through the act, Congress authorized heavy penalties against terrorist organizations. The authorization of military force to suppress the group provided grounds for a revolution by the KKK group.

The American Revolution of the 1860s was triggered by four events: the South’s cessation, ratifications of the amendments, Lincoln’s assassination, and the rise of racial groups. The Southern states felt that Lincoln’s presidency threatened their slavery rights, hence wanting to break from the Union. Further, the Northern states ratified the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, which solidified the freed slave move. Further, Lincoln’s assassination and the rise of racial groups, such as the KKK club, prompted a rebellion. Despite the costs and excesses of the 1860s American Revolution, the question is significant today since it led to slavery abolishment and formulation of several acts that benefited citizens.

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