“War is Complicated”
As always in human affairs, nothing in the Civil War is as simple as we assume. That's illustrated by what happens today in North Carolina and Kentucky.
Consider our division of the
In the North, Radical Republicans cry for all-out, punitive war against the South and the immediate freeing of all slaves, everywhere. More pragmatic Republicans—among them, Abraham Lincoln—prefer a more judicious use of force and a measured approach to emancipation, to avert backlash from the handful of slave states remaining in the
While the North sometimes violates the civil liberties of extreme critics, dissent tends to be more widely, and often violently, suppressed in the South and most Union loyalists have to lie low. However, some pockets of resistance dare take action. Unionists in eastern
On this day, examples of such dissent occur in both the
Needless to say, neither endeavor will prevail, but both will cause heartburn in the state governments they oppose.