A Disease in the Public Mind

A Disease in the Public Mind

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By the time John Brown hung from the gallows for his crimes at Harpera€™s Ferry, Northern abolitionists had made him a a€œholy martyra€ in their campaign against Southern slave owners. This Northern hatred for Southerners long predated their objections to slavery. They were convinced that New England, whose spokesmen had begun the American Revolution, should have been the leader of the new nation. Instead, they had been displaced by Southern a€œslavocratsa€ like Thomas Jefferson. This malevolent envy exacerbated the Southa€™s greatest fear: a race war. Jeffersona€™s cry, a€œWe are truly to be pitied, a€ summed up their dread. For decades, extremists in both regions flung insults and threats, creating intractable enmities. By 1861, only a civil war that would kill a million men could save the Union.Many people had already objected to a€œthe severity of my language, a€ Garrison continued on The Liberatora#39;s first page. He had been denouncing slavery in speeches and newspaper essays in Boston and other cities for more than two years.

Title:A Disease in the Public Mind
Author: Thomas Fleming
Publisher:Da Capo Press - 2013-05-07

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