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Slavery

NEWS
November 9, 2012
The "Making presidential elections fairer" commentary (Nov. 17) omits that the Electoral College is another legacy of slavery. The compromise of 1787, the counting of slaves as three-fifths of a person in determining the number of representatives in Congress to which a state was entitled (plus two senators), was the same formula used to construct the number of electors each state had in the Electoral College. Joseph R. Cowen, Baltimore
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NEWS
June 30, 2012
The more I consider the partisan divide between Republicans and Democrats, the more I am reminded of the Civil War era. If one replaces the word "slavery" with words like "same-sex marriage," "abortion" and "immigration," the similarities are striking. The prejudice against gays and immigrants today is identical to the prejudice against enslaved blacks. And the difference in attitudes between southerners and northerners is equally striking. Republicans and Democrats are both entrenched in their opinions and biases.
NEWS
June 21, 2012
In his column ("Sailabration brings out the mobs," June 19), Dan Rodricks resoundingly endorses the content of a letter submitted to Archbishop William E. Lori by local Catholic Jeff Ross, to protest plans to include a quote from Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in a forthcoming evening Mass. The quote in question implores Confederate soldiers to ask God's aid in their effort to defend the Old South's liberties and her cause. Mr. Ross declares the preservation of slavery an inextricable element of those liberties and that cause, and he opines that "slavery is the institution that Lee labored to preserve.
NEWS
Dan Rodricks | June 18, 2012
It was a big, beautiful weekend for Sailabration in the city of Baltimore, with superb weather, tall ships, Blue Angels, sailboats in the Inner Harbor (and at least one canoe), even a reason for the party (War of 1812 commemoration). And while I'm sure the opening of the new Wegman's in Columbia was exciting, it couldn't compete with Sailabration. ••• But all those people - gobs of people, mobs of people in downtown Baltimore! They were absolutely everywhere during Sailabration, crowding the promenade and the bridges connecting the piers.
NEWS
July 27, 2011
Regarding the horror in Norway, I have no intention of "looking inward," as letter writer Steve Devon suggests ("Norway tragedy should make us look inward," July 26 ). The devastating murder and destruction in that country had nothing to do with a failure to recognize the "value in multiculturalism. " I personally don't see much value in "multiculturalism" myself, but it would never occur to me to bomb buildings or open fire on helpless victims. As for living in a country "founded on the principle of equality" and Constitutional redress, Mr. Devon has a poor grasp of American history.
NEWS
June 6, 2011
The girl is 13, maybe 14, an unhappy adolescent with problems at home and a need to get away. Her mother spends most days getting high and is thinking about trading her child's body for drugs. The live-in boyfriend hits on her whenever mom nods out. Last year she dropped out of school. So she packs a bag and heads for the bus station, because it's the cheapest ticket out of town. As she sits on a bench surrounded by her belongings, a guy appears and starts chatting her up. He seems sympathetic, a good listener.
NEWS
April 15, 2011
None of reader C. Lyon's arguments mitigates against slavery's primary role in the Civil War ("Civil War wasn't all about slavery," April 12). For example: 1) West Virginia was admitted to the Union as a slave state but with a constitutional provision that required the gradual abolition of slavery. 2) Slavery ended with the passage of a constitutional amendment – the 13 t h -- a slow process that was made much more so in the immediate post-war period when the number and status of former slave states was uncertain.
NEWS
April 14, 2011
The adjective "all" in C. Lyon's letter "Civil War wasn't all about slavery" (April 12) raises the question of degree: How much was slavery the cause of the Civil War? But while no one can claim that slavery was the only factor in the war, slavery's role as the primary cause cannot be denied. To do so distorts and corrupts history and deemphasizes the seminal influence of black slavery on American society and politics at the time, and its legacy. That Robert E. Lee had qualms about slavery; that blacks owned black slaves; that a class-based draft led to riots in Northern cities doesn't mitigate the "peculiar institution's" central role in the violent division of the nation, they merely demonstrate the complexity of race and slavery in America at the time.
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