War with Mexico- Point of No Return
How the War with Mexico led to the Civil War
Background on the War and Description and Details on the War
The Mexican-American War occurred between 1846-1848. This war occurred because the United States wanted to obtain Mexican territory. This war was the first war that was heavily influenced by the media, in fact, reporters often fought along side of the troops to get a first hand account of the fighting. Because of the reports, the American public was able to get the full picture of what was happening on the battle field. This allowed them to form their own opinions on the war and decide whether they were in favor or not. Once the public saw how the war was going most realized the horrors of war and wanted to pull out. For the first time the American public was able to have an influential opinion on the war, which eventually translated into other events. Average people were becoming more involved in politics. The issue of slavery was on everyone’s minds as they became more involved and informed. Because of this people were quickly realizing that compromise was no longer an option due to radical views, and civil was was inevitable. The Mexican-American War marked the point of no return.
Short Term and Long Term Consequences of the War
Right after the war was over there was an explosion of patriotic expansionism, but that shortly ended and the nation began to divide. The nation divided over the overall cause for the war. The conscience Whigs accused President Polk of waging the war in effort to add more slave states to the Union. The war also brought controversy as to how the new land would be divided into slave states or free states. The argument about the new slave states or free states turned into a Long Term Consequence of the War when David Wilmot created the Wimot Proviso which suggested a ban on slavery in any territories gained in the war. Wilmot Proviso was killed by a few proslavery northern senators and their southern colleagues. This act fueled the ongoing debate on how whether the new states would be free or slave states. The Free Soil Party, another long term consequence, continued to challenge the presence of slavery with their opposition to the expansion of slavery into western territories.
Why the War with Mexico was the Point of No Return
The Mexican-American War was the point of no return because of the widespread public involvement in the war. This war was the first to have a large involvement of the media, and there was no government censorship. This allowed for the public to be well informed for the entirety of the war. This caused a strong public opinion towards everything related to the war, including slavery. The increasing public opinion on slavery caused the Mexican-American War to be the point of no return. The Mexican-American War was also the point of no return because its heightened a lot of existing arguments such as federal involvement in slavery, competition between slave states and free states, and acts towards the abolishment of slavery. The Mexican-American War was used as a catalyst to all of the events following that led to the Civil War.