Indeed, with the topic of War as our main theme this year, I have come to the conclusion that it certainly brings immeasurable mass destruction. War is an unfortunate event that leads to violence, destruction, slaughter as well as annihilation. The last few centuries mark a significant era of Wars that have killed millions of people. These wars, particularly the U.S. Civil War in 1861 and the Second World War in 1939, give us a broader understanding of the horrors that an individual faced during a violent period.
The American Civil War, a war fought against the issue of slavery, was one which initially started due to distinctive interests between the Northern and Southern states. As written in the Emancipation during the Civil War, “When the war began Union policy strictly forbade interference with the institution of slavery” (Emancipation during the Civil War in Sources, 228). In other words, the Northern States refused to accept slavery; from the very beginning. Abraham Lincoln, a unionist, announced that he would rebel against slavery by force, if necessary; thus, causing the outbreak of the U.S. Civil War.
World War II, a war of the twentieth century, was primarily caused by a cruel leader, Adolf Hitler. Coming out of the First World War was the Covenant of the League of Nations which included peace treaties that were signed at the end of the war. As Article 11 states, “Any war or threat of war, whether immediately affecting any of the members of the League or not, is hereby declared a matter of concern to the whole League and the League shall take any action that may be deemed…” (The Covenant of the League of Nations, 333). In other words, the League of Nations was to take care of any potential war by preventing it from occurring. However, when Britain and France declared war on Germany following Hitler’s invasion of Poland; it triggered the start of the Second World War (Connections, 850-851).
The consequences coming out of the American Civil War were both positive as well as negative. As a result of this major outbreak, Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation announced during the Civil War regarding an end to slavery, was established in 1865. The Reconstruction Amendments following this war were positive on the slave’s part. For instance, in Section One of Amendment Fifteen: “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude” (The Reconstruction Amendments in Sources, 247). Moreover, the addition of the amendments into the U.S. Constitution, to a certain extent, ensured civil rights for the former slave.
After the Civil War, however, “…three institutions replaced slavery in the postwar South – Jim Crow or segregation in social affairs, a whites-only Democratic Party in politics, and sharecropping in economics” (After the Civil War in Anthology, 1). In other words, this suggests that African American...