Today is 151st anniversary of the U.S. Civil War (and reasons why that matters)

Photo: Written excerpts from the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments. Photo source: Google ImagesToday is the 151st anniversary of the beginning of U.S. Civil War. The war between the states redefined our nation and still has an enormous effect on our lives today. And some incredibly important legislation, the Reconstruction amendments, was born out of the conflict.

The 13th Amendment officially outlaws slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. Then-President Abraham Lincoln and other Republicans were concerned that the Emancipation Proclamation, which in 1863 declared the freedom of slaves in the ten rebellious Confederate states, would be seen as a temporary war measure. The proclamation also did not free any slaves in the border states nor itself make slavery illegal.

“The 13th Amendment, when it abolished slavery, did so except for convicts. Through the prison system, the vestiges of slavery have persisted,” Angela Davis wrote, likening the U.S. criminal justice system to modern-day slavery as it keeps over 2 million black men in bondage. For more on slavery and the prison industrial complex, watch video of Davis below or read this blog post discussing some of Davis’s ideas.

The 14th Amendment contained three important clauses:

The 15th Amendment prohibits the government from denying a citizen the right to vote based on that citizen’s “race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” During the time it was ratified in 1870, citizen only applied to men.

3 thoughts on “Today is 151st anniversary of the U.S. Civil War (and reasons why that matters)

  1. Pingback: Today is 151st anniversary of the U.S. Civil War (and reasons why that matters) | QClick Radar

  2. Pingback: Rash of Ohio hate crimes indicative of historical context, culture « Stuff Queer People Need To Know

  3. Pingback: A Rash of Hate Crimes in Ohio: Stories of Oppression, Stories of Hope « In Our Words

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