Southern Arguments for Slavery

Topics: Slavery in the United States, American Civil War, Slavery Pages: 2 (466 words) Published: March 29, 2005
In the United States there was a heated debate about the morality of slavery. Supporters of slavery in the 18th century used legal, economic, and religious arguments to defend slavery. They were able to do so effectively because all three of these reasons provide ample support of the peculiar institution that was so vital to the South. Legally speaking, the constitution offered numerous arguments for slavery and clearly protected the protected the people's rights to own slaves. The 3/5 clause clearly states that slaves are subordinate being who belong enslaved. This compromise also exposes the fact that slaves were thought of as property. Because the slaves are the property of whitest they are protected by the V amendment which states the protection of property. According to this amendment neither the government, nor anyone else had the right to take slaves away from their owners. The 10th amendment furthermore stated that the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. Since nowhere was the government given the power to get rid of slavery, that power belonged to the state, and the people. In these ways the constitution provided those in favor of slavery with a strong argument.

Economics was an enormous factor in the support of slavery. The South was dependent of slave labor to run the large plantations that shipped King Cotton, their main product, out to the North as well as abroad. Southerners argued that emancipation would destroy their economy. Furthermore it would hurt the economy of the North which depended on the raw materials from the South for its manufacturing. In addition to slave owners middle and lower class workers often took pro slavery positions because they did now want job competition. Four million new free people would certainly increase job competition and lower wages. In this way it is clear that economically...
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