Why did the US fight a civil war? I've had heated arguments about this as well. The Confederacy withdrawing from the Union was what started it, but I believe slavery was the real cause of the Civil War. Last fall I spoke with a children's librarian from the South that told me that it was the south that freed the slaves, not the North (if the slaves agreed to fight with the confederacy). Others have told me that it was a war of Northern aggression, of the industrialized states trying to bully the gentle agricultural South. The North won the war, but the Southern apologists won History.
Back in the 80s when I was a college "peer minister" at a United Methodist church, two Southern Methodists visited the Swords into Plowshares Peace Center I managed. They dismissed the center as "leftist." Apparently Jesus would have opposed the Nuclear Freeze movement. These were two gentlemen from a state that celebrated Robert E. Lee day instead of Martin Luther King day back when King day was first started, and they were proud of it.
On Tuesday, the tide of the battle may change. The Civil War may finally be over.