Do you think an agreement could be reached?

Discussion in 'Civil War' started by cameronpalte, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. cameronpalte

    cameronpalte Member

    Do you guys believe than an agreement could have been reached at all. Over 750,000 people died and an agreement could have saved many many people. Do you guys think people should have worked to reach and agreement and do you think it could have been possible.
  2. Vercingetorix

    Vercingetorix Member

    There were some attempts at compromise in the years leading up to the war. But whenever things would settle down, there would be some incident or inflammatory speech which would get everyone all riled up again.

    Ultimately, I think it would have been very difficult for the various factions to reach an agreement. Remember, everybody at that time thought that any armed conflict would be short and not very disruptive. So they didn't fully comprehend what kind of abyss they were marching into by failing to reach some kind of agreement.
  3. It's very easy to play Monday-morning quarterback and say, "Well, they could have reached an agreement if they'd sat and talked it out more." You have to remember though that wars are usually not undertaken lightly. When there is a revolution or civil war, it's usually because one side doesn't think the other will listen to them.

    Also, as vercingetorix said, the initial battles were not thought to be a major conflict. They were seen by the general populace almost as a sporting event. Gentlemen and ladies rode in their carriages out to the edges of the battlefield with picnic lunches.
  4. pietastesgood

    pietastesgood Member

    I don't think they could have reached an agreement, personally. There had already been so many attempts at compromises before, with the Missouri Compromise and some other one I forget the name of, but the growing sectionalism between the two areas was going to result in something nasty.
  5. unthinkable

    unthinkable New Member

  6. unthinkable

    unthinkable New Member

    As a canadian and admittedly,not well read in american history,I will offer my opinion as an outsider.To your question,I would answer,no_One of the guiding doctrines of american domestic and foreign policy,well before the civil war,was that of manifest destiny.America could only take her place on the world stage and achieve her full potential by expanding and cementing the bonds of the collective states,while at the same time recognizing that some central oversight would be required.As a "united" collection of "states" America has always had the tension between central authority and individual states rights.Beyond that is the delicate question of how to hold the country together,balancing a need for national direction,while at the same time not trampling individual states initiatives.It is similar to the argument of the rights of the individual versus the demands of the society he or she lives in.It is a thorny issue for America,and was recognized as such then and still is today.Prior to 1860,America was hardly a unified nation, geographically, politically or socially. When President Lincoln, warned that a house divided cannot stand,it occurred to me that there was more meaning behind his statement than I first thought.If America did move forward as a union of states and peoples,united and concious of their potential in world history, then the principle of manifest destiny,of national purpose,would be hopelessly,compromised.Two halves do not make a whole,and an America split by internal dissent and distrust would never be able to achieve her full potential economically,militarilly and politically. The obvious danger of course would be the vulnerability of a southern confederacy and northern union to external threats. Beyond that,America would literally stagnate,unable to grow, mature and move forward.Using the analogy of a human child to illustrate the situation the young nation known as the United States found itself in prior to the civil war,the child would never grow to adulthood and realize his full a "world" of powerful and predatory "adult" nations,the "child" America would be a vulnerable and easily exploited target.Every nation goes through "growth" stages which can be painful and often a steep learning curve.But if the nation can adapt and learn,it will survive.The America of today is still faced by the ever present balancing act it must perform:but the good thing is,even through one of the bloodiest episodes of it's history,America adapted, learned and survived.

  7. Interrogator#6

    Interrogator#6 Active Member

    Agreement to what? Compromise over what? Your thesis is too vague, but I will attempt to answer:

    There had been a whole series of compromises in America over a number of sectional differences, ever since the nation was founded. If one reads regarding how the US Constitution was worked out one learns of a number of compromises were made. There was the crisis of 1848 which lead to the Missouri Compromise of 1850, which in turn lead to the foundation of a new "third party" (Republican) which caused the constitutional crisis of 1860 where a president was elected who was not even on the ballot in many of the Southern States. That the South found their votes were effectively wasted was the spark which ignited the secession powder-keg.

    Apparently the South was tired of compromising.

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