Southern Honor Ethics and Behavior in the Old South
To label slavery a crime is to insist that its white beneficiaries should have known what we know today, or to say that they had information that we now have access to. Southern Honor Ethics and Behavior in the Old South written by Bertram Wyatt-Brown; maintains that honor was the animating force in the antebellum South, the basis of the slaveholding South’s integrity. The white slaveholders valued honor and genuinely trusted their own slaves, loved their families, the people that they were close to and knew best, yet they were convinced that the black race was vile, bestial, and fit for nothing but bondage.
Mr. Brown in his book utters the following quote, which he feels explains why the white Southern man defended slavery and why he fought so hard to keep it instilled. “The inhabitant of the Old South was not inspired to shed his own slaves. Ever since man first picked up a stone to fling at an enemy, he has justified his thirst for revenge and for popular approval on the grounds of honor…White Southerners were certain their cause was justified by that prehistoric code.” In summary this quote states that the white Southern planter did not just wake up and defend hid slaves but it was predestined that man defend his property and take revenge against his enemies. The slaves were their property and the Northerners the ones to exact their revenge upon for trying to take their slaves.
The white Southerner felt that the black was inferior, an animal, and most certainly property; this opinion this caused the treatment of blacks and especially the justice system to promote the interests of the white slaveholding elite. Blacks...