Ya’ Gotta Love Them Cherokee!
From: wildbill4dixie@yahoo.com
The Cherokee “Declaration of Causes”, written in October 1861 when that tribe cast its lot with the Confederacy, provides some interesting insights into the North/South conflict and what was at stake.
First, with respect to “Father Abraham’s” administration, it clearly demonstrates that someone else (besides white Southerners) had noticed that this administration was something more than those which had preceded it, and that “something” wasn’t very good. For those who simply cannot understand why some of us won’t be celebrating Lincoln’s 200th anniversary, maybe they should take a look at how the Cherokee viewed his government and its actions. If nothing else, it demonstrates to our critics that we didn’t make this stuff up!:
“But in the Northern States the Cherokee people saw with alarm a violated Constitution, all civil liberty put in peril, and all the rules of civilized warfare and the dictates of common humanity and decency unhesitatingly disregarded. In States which still adhered to the Union a military despotism has displaced the civil power and the laws became silent amid arms. Free speech and almost free thought became a crime. The right to the writ of habeas corpus, guaranteed by the Constitution, disappeared at the nod of a Secretary of State or a general of the lowest grade. The mandate of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court was set at naught by the military power, and this outrage on common right approved by a President sworn to support the Constitution. War on the largest scale was waged, and the immense bodies of troops called into the field in the absence of any law warranting it under the pretense of suppressing unlawful combination of men. The humanities of war, which even barbarians respect, were no longer thought worthy to be observed. Foreign mercenaries and the scum of cities and the inmates of prisons were enlisted and organized into regiments and brigades and sent into Southern States to aid in subjugating a people struggling for freedom, to burn, to plunder, and to commit the basest of outrages on women; while the heels of armed tyranny trod upon the necks of Maryland and Missouri, and men of the highest character and position were incarcerated upon suspicion and without process of law in jails, in forts, and in prison-ships, and even women were imprisoned by the arbitrary order of a President and Cabinet ministers; while the press ceased to be free, the publication of newspapers was suspended and their issues seized and destroyed; the officers and men taken prisoners in battle were allowed to remain in captivity by the refusal of their Government to consent to an exchange of prisoners; as they had left their dead on more than one field of battle that had witnessed their defeat to be buried and their wounded to be cared for by Southern hands.”
And yes, “African servitude” is mentioned as being one of the causes of the differences between North and South. The Cherokee, after all, were slave owners themselves. However, there are other issues which concerned the Cherokee and they clearly state them:
“Whatever causes the Cherokee people may have had in the past, to complain of some of the Southern States, they cannot but feel that their interests and their destiny are inseparably connected with those of the South. The war now raging is a war of Northern cupidity and fanaticism against the institution of African servitude; against the commercial freedom of the South, and against the political freedom of the States, and its objects are to annihilate the sovereignty of those States and utterly change the nature of the General Government.”
To anyone who faults me for not worshipping “Father Abraham” or accuses me of being a “Lost Cause Advocate”, (i.e., re-writing history to make the South look good), I simply tell them to look up what the Cherokee had to say.
Read’em and weep “damnyankees”! And God bless them Cherokee!
Bill Vallante
Commack NY