Menu Close

Evolution and Social Darwinism in Civil War Reconstruction2 min read

Listen to this article

Today on Fresh Air, Terry Gross interviewed author and historian Eric Foner, who is promoting his new book Forever Free: The Story of Emancipation and Reconstruction.  He did not sound like he had a specific axe to grind (liberal or conservative), and his interview (audio posted later today) was very informative.  He talked about the reconstruction era after the American Civil War, between about 1865 and 1877.  I learned the following:

  • Advances by blacks in the south were significant during this time, when in fact, 2 of the 5 black federal senators (that’s *ever* in the U.S.) served, and over 1200 blacks served in elected office.
  • President Jackson tried to veto two of the most significant civil rights bills, but his veto was overridden by 2/3 votes in Congress.
  • Many of the advances for blacks during reconstruction were actually lost during the 1890’s and early 1900’s due to racist legislation like the Jim Crow laws.

What I found really interesting about the last point is that the author mentioned the many ideological forces pushing back civil rights.  One of them was Social Darwinism!  Despite evolutionists’ pleading that Darwin never meant such a thing, the consequences of evolutionary theory are self-evident.

This does not prove that evolution is wrong or bad, but it does support the contention that evolution is wrong because it can not be integrated with other disciplines of truth (like social justice or the design of civil goverment or Christianity ;), but can be integrated with such ideas as Social Darwinism and atheism.  It’s ease of integration with these bogus systems of thought makes me suspect it is also bogus.