Slavery were rulings which set precedents that vindicated

Slavery
existed in America beginning in the seventeenth century; it
became a depended-upon institution for the cultivation of tobacco and
other crops. After
the American Revolution, however,
tobacco prices fell and slavery became less profitable.
With the invention of the cotton gin in 1793, slavery took a turn as
cotton became the new cash crop and the
cotton industry erupted. As a result, slavery became
a nearly indivisible part of the economy of the South. Since
slavery was a major
institution and a seemingly
intrinsic
part of Southern life during the nineteenth century, its proponents
were averse to its devastation,
and thus supported its perpetuation with
cases political, moral, and economic which held that slavery was
legal and an
inherent right since slaves were property, that slavery was in the
slaves’ interest as it exposed them to
Christianity and converted them from their “heathenish” ways,
and that the abolition of slavery would result
in the deterioration of the Southern
economy.
Political
arguments that arose during the discussion of slavery
involved
supporters claiming they
had the legal right to own slaves. Many
court decisions led proponents to think this way; there were rulings
which set precedents that vindicated the legality of slavery.
Chief
Justice at the time and supporter of slavery Roger
Taney
influenced the
decisions of the Supreme
Court. One
such decision was Dred
Scott v. Sanford, a
momentous case in
which the Supreme Court ruled that all blacks—not just slaves—would
be seen in court as property, rather than as humans. Taney
further
stated,
simply, that black
people “had no rights which a white man was bound to respect.”
While Taney ignored Article IV, Section 2 of the Constitution—”The
citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and
immunities of citizens in the several states”—he swiftly argued
that denying slave owners their slaves was a direct violation of the
Fifth Amendment, as
slaves were
the property
of their owners. When slaves tried to fight for their freedom in the
South, they were seen
as and treated like property without human rights.

Proponents’
moral arguments included justifications based on religion.
Many slaveholders were Christian, and
they believed that, since Jesus never spoke out against slavery, it
was sanctioned
by their religion. Since it was said that slavery was approved by
both the Old Testament and the New Testament—in the Old by God and
in the New by Jesus and his Apostles—extremists claimed
that an anti-slavery stance was impious and contradicted God. Other
moral arguments involved proponents claiming slavery was a divine
institution, and it was genuinely a noble deed for those who were
enslaved. Their
reasoning followed that the “heathens”
from Africa, through the institution,
could learn about Christianity by coming to America, even if they
were doing so as forced workers.
Slave owners took the stance that
overall, they were helping the slaves more than they were causing
them harm.
Economically,
the justification for slavery revolved around the fear that ending
slavery would cause the Southern economy to collapse, since the
agricultural production sustained by slaves
was its
precise foundation. The slaves kept a multitude of plantations
running. The cotton economy, the tobacco crops, the rice, all
maintained by slavery, would collapse. Rice would cease to be
profitable. Supporters also contended that freeing all the slaves
would incite rife unemployment and chaos.
In
addition, they argued that the slaves could not take care of
themselves, circling
back
to the idea that the slavery institution helped the slaves by
providing them with food and shelter.
Southerners feared they would
lose the basis of their economy should
the slaves be set free.
Since
the
institution of slavery
was a deeply entrenched
component of Southern life, the threat of its abolition stimulated
arguments of justification through political, moral,
and economic arguments. Defenders
of slavery were convinced that they had the right to own slaves, that
they were doing the slaves a favor, and that the Southern economy
would crumble were they to suddenly free all the slaves. With the
publication of Uncle Tom’s Cabin and the decision of trials such as
Dred Scott v. Sanford, both of which drew major attention to the
anguish
and the
iniquity
that slavery encompassed,
the abolitionist movement grew
clamorous.
In
spite of
all attempts and arguments, slavery ultimately
was
eradicated
after the Civil War, and Blacks
began the long quest
to civil rights.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!


order now