Barbara, Andrew, Babs, Mat, and Annie

Narf, an exclamation by Pinky from Pinky and the Brain.
NARF, Native American Rights Fund.
NARF, North American Reconstruction Force. The best group out of y'all.

The war is over; the blood has been shed and now is the time to mend the wounds of the nation. The Reconstruction Era was a hopeful fix in a seemingly hopeless cause; improperly upheld, delivered and stipulated. Many of the Ex-Confederates felt as though they were entitled to lead the battered South; their punishments too lenient, their rewards too high and their arrogance unchecked. A daunting dilemma is presented before us; what actions should we take and how extreme the measures; a delicate balancing act to appease both sides of the spectrum (the North and the South) while reminding the conquered of their place and punishment. Our group has endeavored to rightly reward the cooperators, a carrot if you will, while administering the stick where and when it is needed. Incentives will be offered and given to those who will collaborate with our conditions, troops will be employed as a police force and renovate the Southern states, punishment will be rightfully meted out to the high conspirators and totalitarian control will be temporarily utilized on the Southern state governments. Like stitches on a wound, some of our methods will seem harsh and aggravating however, it is vital and necessary to hold the tattered nation together; the pain will eventually pay off and will be consoled throughout our vision of Reconstruction.
Andrew makes his point: "Shoot the KKK in some remote field at night!"

First things first, before any state is restored into the Union, it must fulfill certain requirements. The South must ratify and put the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendment into practice, a practice that will be upheld by the American Army (further explained in Paragraph 4.) As section 2 on amendment 13, section 5 on amendment 14, and section 2 on amendment 15 Congress hold the power to enforce the states to abide by the words of the people. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude will exist in the United States of America starting the day of ratification of the 13th amendment. All men and women, born and naturalized are citizens of the United States of America. All will receive full rights (however, only male citizens age 18 or older, regardless of race, occupation or property are eligible to vote) and if any of these rights are infringed upon to any individual of any race, religion, or gender, actions will be taken to rectify it. If an individual is found, tried and guilty of depriving another’s rights, they will be subjected to a fine and any further punishments applicable to the crimes they have committed. At the same time, a probationary period will be installed, disabling any and all state voted representatives. House and Senate candidates may be presented by the state governments (candidates can be of any race however, all ex-confederates that have been politically blacklisted are prohibited) but further screening and appointment will be done by the three branches; during a worst case scenario where no candidate is found suitable or agreed upon, the president and House will anoint a selected official to the seat. The representative of the state will not have a vote in Congress but a voice so that the people of the state will be heard and kept in mind. Only to break a tie will this representative have permission to cast a vote. Probation will last as long as Congress sees fit and once the probationary period is over, state control and state rights will be restored. Appointed officials can be kept or replaced should the state decide so.

As mentioned before, incentives will be offered and given to those who will cooperate with our conditions and punishment will be rightfully meted out. Similar to the Homestead Act, the Exodus Act will reward free land to blacks willing to relocate to Kansas. Freedmen that have stayed behind will be given jobs (and pay) in the upstart factories and industries in the South (further explained below). The same jobs will be given to Southern whites in need of money. Racial diversity will be promoted but segregated work areas will be offered as well to the Southern whites/blacks. Factories will be separated into whites only, blacks only and mixed in order to promote a safe working environment and tentative steps to racial equality. All facilities will be equal in every aspect; an architectural overseer (from the North) will be utilized to ensure same facility quality. A 5% wage tax will be deducted from everyone’s wages (including the factory owner) to be used for Reconstruction purposes (renovation and public works such as schools, libraries, hospitals etc.) Public education will be offered in the same stipulations as above. Meanwhile, those within the higher echelons of the ex-Confederates (Colonels above, Senators/Representatives) will be fairly tried for treason and judged accordingly. Punishments will range from rank stripping, freezing of military benefits and war fines; all will be politically blacklisted and a mandatory oath of allegiance will be taken and further treason will be punishable by death. However, reinstatement and military stipends will be offered to ex-confederate soldiers below the rank of Colonel willing to join the American Army; a mandatory oath of allegiance and future treason punishable by death will also apply.

During the period of military occupation (a proposed period of 20 years), Union troops will be sub divided into three distinct groups specialized in a specific task. First of these groups will be involved with the general welfare of the people and entasked with policing the area. A second much smaller group will deal specifically and eliminate radical Southerners that participate in groups such as the Ku Klux Klan, and any other racial faction. The last and largest group will be attributed to acting as a work force to help rebuild the South. They will work to replace and/or fix the railroads that were destroyed during the war, and to help build new manufacturing factories across the South. Civilian volunteers will be happily accepted and compensated for reconstruction work. Also, a 5% statewide tax will be instated in the South and 20% of Northern taxes will be relegated to reconstruction purposes and to help jump start the economy. Furthermore, Northern tycoons will be offered a handsome loan to start and propagate their business in the South. These new factories will be primarily built by the work force of Union troops and volunteers, and will not only provide jobs for many Southerners, but also industrialize the former rural country. Old, twisted and broken rail lines will be sequestered, melted and recycled into newer rail roads. These new and fixed railroads will provide better transportation throughout the South and will help stimulate Southern economy. No Southerner will be forced to work in these federal factories, but they will be promised a respectable wage.

As seen above; leniency and control, reward and punishment, must be doled out in a proportionate manner. The consent and willingness of the North and South is vital to the success of reconstruction. The North must be allowed to profit from its victory while the South is to acknowledge its loss, kept tame, controlled and content. The black population must also be acknowledged, protected and provided for to the extent of both North and South tolerance. Once these opposing natures are united, the wounds of war will finally heal.

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First of all, I think this plan has some really good strengths and it was well thought out. I think that the ideas cover all areas of the reconstruction process.
I am in full agreement with the idea that the South must ratify and put into practice the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments. This must be done in order for Reconstruction to be possible. I also agree that all people should have the right to vote, however I do not think that the South will be very agreeing to this and there will probably be a ton of resistance to this. I also think that punishing the ex- Confederates and not allowing them to hold office until they can be put on trial will not be the best method of dealing with them and anointing a selected official will not be like having the people represented because that person will not have them in mind.
I am confused with the Exodus Act and why the blacks would have to relocate to Kansas. Also, I don’t think that separated factories to work in will work because that is what the union is trying to get away from. The union is trying to integrate blacks and whites together and to separate them would just be to do the opposite of the goal. If the whites and blacks are separated, especially on purpose, then they will never get in the mindset of being equal.
I agree that taxes will have to come from the North in order to stimulate the Southern economy. This is the only way that the Southern economy will get going again. I also like the idea of rebuilding the railroads for better transportation.
I like a lot of this Reconstruction proposal and I think it was well thought out. With a couple of small changes I think it could be a really good reconstruction plan.

Anna Marie Sokolowski