CSA military asked for things from the CSA politicians in Richmond. Unless the CSA military was out of touch with their own situation in the field, they would not have made requests for a policy that was supposedly already an accepted reality.
Lee even into 1865 pushed for urgent legislation on this matter. Was Le so oblivious of the reality in the field that he was still uaware of these "0thousands upon thousands" already in combat? What need would there be for Lee to seek any any legislatiive solution whatsoever if this already was in wide practice throughout the South?
To take such a position is to claim that Lee himself was unaware of the "true" situation and was finding false needs for a problem that didn't exist, and was seeking solutions for something already solved. Frederick Douglas' second hand speculations from a distance are irrelevent to Lee's personal on the field first hand knowledge, observations and assessments of what more needed to be done. Lee saw a need and he himself asked for legislative action.
How about the congresmen opposing Lee's suggestions. Were they completely oblivious to the conditions in theor own states, in their own militias, to the attitudes of the officers and men in their own regimentds? If so, it is inconcievable incompetence.
there is no need for northen sources, when you can take the leadership of the CSA at their own words from their own contemporary knowledge of the state of affairs under their own eyes.