Justin: In the Feast of Being Able to. Amen.

The Civil War – Look Again

Last year a significant statistic from American history was revised.

…through newly digitized census data from the 19th century, J. David Hacker, a demographic historian from Binghamton University in New York, has recalculated the death toll [of the American Civil War] and increased it by more than 20 percent — to 750,000.

New York Times

This number is staggering. Consider the loss our nation faced in Vietnam, and how that affected us for generations. Those losses left a scar on our nation, at around 68,000 dead. But 750,000? Imagine if that many Americans died in a war today. It’s hard to imagine, but we need to look at it in perspective.

In 1860, the year before the Civil War began, our population was just 31.4 Million. 750,000 dead is a staggering 2.38% of the U.S. population. So how would that feel today? How many losses in American blood would it take to understand what our nation suffered from 1861 – 1865?

Our current population is around 312,000,000. To lose that same 2.38% of Americans would equal:

7,471,337 dead. It is staggering to even imagine.

For all our patriotism, and all our principled beliefs, we should fear the day that we cannot, through politics, resolve and compromise. I don’t know what the face of the nation would be like had 3/4 million people not been killed in The Civil War. I can’t explain or guess what pain was felt and how we suffered for it. But imagine if tomorrow the killing began, and would not stop until 7.5 million of us were dead.

Let me be prayerful of where I draw my lines, and so very careful about those for which I would fight.

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