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In 1850, a record called the Fugitive Slave Act was passed. Primarily, this record dealt with the reclaiming of runaway slaves. This legislation allowed southerners to call upon the federal government to capture runaway slaves who had fled the South and might be dwelling in the North. The Fugitive Slave Act and the laws that went with it just caused controversy in the North. This divide the North and South. In response to this, some northern states passed laws forbidding state officials to enforce the Fugitive Slave Law, which only angered the southern countries. Northerners had become aware of the hypocrisy of slavery and eventually became resolved to stop slavery. Many abolitionists began to take action to help slaves escape. This significant controversy over the runaway slaves sparked the start of the Civil War. Basic rights that Americans held were denied to suspected runaway slaves. An individual needs to note that although some African Americans from the North were liberated, they could be considered a suspected runaway. Suspected runaway slaves, even when they were free, were denied the right to a jury and held the burden of evidence; no longer in which they innocent until proven guilty, they were supposed guilty. When Northerners heard that fundamental rights were denied to American slaves, they wanted to stop slavery immediately. America would appear to be hypocrites if they had been denying the fundamental rights that they had fought against Britain. This second quote is from a speech given by Frederick Douglas about the fou...