History of a Moral Quest

Topics: American Civil War, United States, Abraham Lincoln Pages: 3 (822 words) Published: June 6, 2013
Abigail G
American History 221
Ron M
13 December 2012
History as a Moral Quest
A large part of what we talked about in American history 221 was slavery and Americas ability to over come slavery. Looking back at what our nation has overcome is an amazing thing, however it seems that most of what our nation has struggled with has been brought on by our own selves and our choices as a nation. Learning history is a wonderful way to not make the same mistakes twice. It teaches todays Americans not only what happened but also how our nation was founded and what kind of foundation America was built on.

Slavery a very trying and tough time in America had a large affect on both whites and blacks. Howard Zinn says “The memory of oppressed people is one thing that cannot be taken away, and for such people, with such memories, revolt is always an inch below the surface.” (Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present). This is very true; no one affected by this horrid piece of history will ever be able to forget. And it saddens me personally to see younger generations carrying on the same emotional burdens of their ancestors. I feel like many younger generations take a view similar to Zinns when he says, “I will try not to overlook the cruelties that victims inflict on one another as they are jammed together in the boxcars of the system. I don’t want to romanticize them. But I do remember (in rough paraphrase) a statement I once read: “The cry of the poor is not always just, but if you don’t listen to it, you will never know what justice is.” (Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present) The civil war was what ended the span of slavery on America. Under president Lincolns administration on July 4, 1865 the south surrendered and slavery was abolished setting all slaves in the north and the south free.

Zinn says, “Nations are not communities and never have been. The history of any country, presented as...
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