American history has frequently been divided by the disparities between the northern and southern states. An increasing animosity between the Union and the Confederacy based on differing beliefs and lifestyles of each side's population culminated in the American Civil War. Slavery became a significant problem in the Civil War as it progressed. The Civil War erupted after various debates over state and federal powers and after Abraham Lincoln was elected on an anti-slavery platform.
While it is true that most of the North's abolitionist belief was founded on moral considerations, to say that morality was the only cause is a misleading generalisation. Many anti-slavery views in the North were based on political, economic, and even racial grounds. Many Northerners' anti-slavery beliefs went beyond moral concerns to self-gain. Sadly, much of history has been rewritten to benefit the North (whose principles shaped contemporary America).
By the commencement of the Civil War, the North was opposed to slavery for various reasons, many of which were political. Both politicians and civilians utilised slavery to justify the Civil War. By 1850, there were only 347,525 slaveholders out of a total white population of over 6,000,000. Half had four or fewer enslaved people and were not considered planters." Slavery in the South was waning by the time of the Civil War.
The North continued to exploit slavery to justify its hatred against the South despite this. This was due to a long-standing distrust between the two parties. The South had a distinct climate, geography, economics, and moral, racial, social, ideological, and political beliefs than the North. But it went beyond that. The North sought America's industrialisation, while the South remained agrarian. The South's "unusual" ways were causing irritation and humiliation to the North.
The North blamed America's problems on the South, notably on slavery. They even blamed the South for the plight of African Americans in the North. "The toleration of slavery in the South is the principal cause of the wretched status of free coloured individuals in the North," said William Lloyd Garrison in his anti-slavery publication The Liberator. Northerners utilised every opportunity to condemn or discredit the South, thereby convincing themselves of its immorality (and, therefore, justify their disapproval). Slavery gave the North the justification they needed to attack the South.
Even the Emancipation Proclamation, the abolitionist movement's climax, had political objectives. The Emancipation Proclamation did not liberate any enslaved people despite its historical significance. Lincoln knew the necessity of keeping the Border States happy – Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, and Delaware, and therefore the Emancipation Proclamation did not extend to them.
Slavery had been abolished in Europe (such as Britain and France) at the commencement of the Civil War. The Proclamation painted the Confederacy as a slave-holding nation to demonstrate to Europe that the Union was staunchly anti-slavery. These nations realised they could never sustain a slave-holding nation or provoke an abolitionist government. The Emancipation Proclamation dealt with slavery on the surface, but its underlying goal stretched well beyond abolition to justify and motivate the Civil War.
The North's industrialisation heightened the demand for low-cost labour. While immigrants generally met this demand, many of the manufacturing employees at the time were African American (who, thanks to the racism of the North, we're unable to get better jobs). The demand for inexpensive, strong, and effective labour grew with industrialisation. To transport former southern enslaved people north to work, businesspeople and manufacturers would have had to advocate for abolition in the South.
The abolitionist movement was never pro-African American. Many anti-slavery sentiments were rooted in racism and hate of the African race. Many northerners, especially immigrants, blamed slavery for the black population boom, and they despised blacks crowding their neighbourhoods and stealing their jobs. According to historian and political theorist Alexis de Tocqueville, abolitionist states look more racist than slavery states. Northerners opposed slavery, denying African Americans a genuine place in American culture.
While the North rejected slavery for reasons other than morality, morality had a significant role. But this was not morality derived from natural freedom principles; it was merely derived from the fact that the South was pro-slavery and hence anti-South meant anti-slavery. The North's long-standing acceptance and support of slavery is the most substantial evidence. Slavery endured in the North even after the slave trade was prohibited. When the first Northern abolitionists came out, rioting and demonstrations greeted them.
I quickly forgot northern slavery. Slavery in the North was hidden for decades, and even now, it is difficult to discover information about it. This was partly a northern attempt to absolve them. But they did it to construct a narrative for a "New America."
Like the South, the North had reasons to oppose slavery. Not for the welfare of humanity but for personal wealth. Reality: The North's anti-slavery sentiments were fuelled by political, anti-Southern and racist views and the construction of a new American ideology. This information has been kept out of American history. Most patriotic Americans do not want to hear that the North fought against slavery for selfish motives. While it is nice to think that the North opposed slavery for the more significant benefit of humanity, the fact is that they did so for personal gain.
About the Author - This detailed research on a "brief exploration on the reasons the north opposed slavery " is done and published by Eddie Broke who works as an assignment help expert in Australia.