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Does a State have the right to secede?
08-21-2013, 11:55 AM (This post was last modified: 08-21-2013 11:56 AM by Liz Rosenthal.)
Post: #22
RE: Does a State have the right to secede?
I guess you didn't consider any of my discussion concerning West Virginia or secession in general, other than the bit about karma, the latter of which was a fun throwaway on my part. Smile

This will probably start a firestorm here, but the leaders of the southern states that seceded or rebelled would have had a lot of gall to complain about the Union's encouragement of western Virginia's efforts to remove itself from Virginia when: 1) The South seceded itself; 2) They set up a dangerous precedent for themselves that could have, and at some point probably would have, broken up the Confederacy; 3) They claimed that, in seceding, they were just safeguarding their "freedom," in this case the freedom to own slaves, which meant a complete lack of freedom for an entire class of people. This was the ultimate in hypocrisy.

Southern slaveowners did have the unbelievable gall to demand the return of their runaway slaves under the Fugitive Slave Act at the same time that they claimed to have left the Union, in which case, they should have realized that they forfeited any claims they had under the Act!

Gene has an interesting way of looking at it - that western Virginia was essentially trying to stay in the Union.

(08-21-2013 10:59 AM)brtmchl Wrote:  Liz:
The "secession" of western Virginia from the rest of Virginia could be viewed simply as karmic justice.


During the course of the American Civil War, the western counties of Virginia making up what is now West Virginia seceded from Virginia (which had joined the Confederacy) and became the 35th state of the U.S. Specifically, Unionist leaders in Wheeling set up a new state government for Virginia that was recognized by Washington. The new Virginia state government in turn voted to allow the western counties to secede. They did so, wrote a constitution, and were admitted to the Union as West Virginia. Support for the Confederacy and the Union was about evenly divided in the new state and guerrilla war lasted until 1865.

How does a Government decry Southern States for their attempt to secede, especially in the case of Virginia, then invade their borders for doing so; and then legally allow West Virginia to secede from Virgina and formally recognize its right to do so?

I understand that the formal government in Virginia was not recognized by the Union once Virginia cooperated in Rebellion against the Union. At the time of the Wheeling decision in early June, the Richmond Government had pulled representation from Washington, and the Wheeling government had sent Senators to represent VA. From a Federal legal standpoint, Wheeling was the legitimate government.

But at the time this must have seemed to Southerners completely Tyrannical and Hypocritical

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RE: Does a State have the right to secede? - Liz Rosenthal - 08-21-2013 11:55 AM
RE: Does a State have the right to secede? - Hess1865 - 08-24-2013, 09:04 PM

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