How Manifest Destiny and Slavery Helped Divide the Country

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How Manifest Destiny and Slavery Helped Divide the Country The Manifest Destiny was the belief or view that the United States’ expansion to other areas and continents was inevitable and that it was approved by God. According to the doctrine, the United States had power over all other countries and had been ordained by God to spread civilization to these states. The defeat of Mexico led to the acquisition of a huge piece of land to the southwest. There was also significant extension towards the north. The acquisition of the new territories, however, sparked a heated debate regarding their status as either free labor states or slave states. The country was fractured along sectional and partisan lines as different leaders had different opinions regarding the decisions to take regarding these states. A conflict was inevitable, and the country had to take one direction regarding slavery. It had to be either an entirely free labor country or a total slave labor country as the two systems were incompatible. “They can never exist together in one country.” (Foner269) The conflict regarding slavery and free labor was threatening to wreck the country into two; with the north advocating for free labor while the south was pro-slave labor. Abolitionist northerners believed that slavery was an evil that should not expand into the new territories. They claimed that the North was the home of opportunity, progress, and freedom.” (Foner 267) It was around this time that the Republican Party was formed. The party, together with other liberal-minded people advocated for a slavery-free nation; one in which everyone had access to equal opportunities, rights, and freedoms. According to

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