Are the Northerners justified to pardon the people in the south who fought in the civil war? The Civil War concluded with the surrender of the Confederate States. But, tensions did not cease to exist, many southern leaders still were resentful towards the south and the north felt punishment was deserving. Lincoln and his successors had to find a balance that would help retain the Union. However, it is debatable whether or not the leniency that Lincoln and his successors was justifiable or not? It is proven that their leniency was justified as otherwise the rights of many Blacks would have been compromised and the Union would have fallen through.

The Comic provided depicts a ship named the New Alabama and alludes to the new found power of the KKK. The Ku Klux Klan’s rise to power during this era was one failure of the Reconstruction period. The Ku Klux Klan’s growth in power stemmed from the negative feelings may in the south had towards the actions of Lincoln during the Civil War that decimated the southern economy and further emphasized the poverty faced by the lower classes of the South. The Southern movements were uncontrolled by the federal government due to fears of the moderate Republicans that the union was too fragile.
The Wade-Davis Manifesto of 1864 was a bill that was proposed by two Radical Republicans who felt that Lincoln’s proposal for the South’s reentry to the union was too lenient and not punishing enough. The bill implied that the federal government would be able to control the actions of the Southern states until subjective standards were met. This led to a veto by Lincoln who believed that the bill would end the union. The Wade-Davis Manifesto was intended for those who came from the North or were radical republicans and felt that the actions of the South needed to be reprimanded and future rebellions would be put down effectively. The document was a success of the era because it was vetoed helping keep the union intact even though it was on tumultuous terms.
The reconstruction period was highlighted by the continual change of the social standards of all the groups associated as a result of the politics that played out in regards to punishment for causing the Civil War. The 14th Amendment highlights the legacy of the Reconstruction Period as many southern Blacks were able to gain rights and become a part of the union. This was all a part of the movement to pardon the southern people, even though the southern civilians caused the Civil war.

The reconstruction period shares parallels with the civil rights movement of the 1900’s that balanced the interests of the majority and the minority. Many bodies of power such as the Blacks, KKK, and the Northerners play prominent roles during both periods that shape the legislation of the period.

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