- Dec 1, 2010
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And yet slavery wasn't just an American institution as you imply. In fact it isn't just blacks who were slaves or whites who were slave owners. It still exists in Africa. Focusing on the United States with the history of slavery is obviously an agenda, not fact based.The author of the 1619 Project wrote that "one of the primary reasons the colonists decided to declare their independence from Britain was because they wanted to protect the institution of slavery.” This was simply not true.
Of course in the actual war there were opportunist appeals to various Indian tribes and slaves ... from both sides. The few slaves in the South who actually escaped and fought with the British side ... were brave men battling for their freedom. So too were the Indians who fought with the British. But this doesn’t change the nature of the struggle as a whole.
Blacks in New England, where anti-slavery sentiments were then more fertile than in England itself, often fought with the Americans. Crucially, emancipation was achieved in many New England states as that revolutionary period ended. Time limits were put on slavery in important states like New York, so that future generations were born free, and even once enslaved men and women like Sojourner Truth could become free. Anti-slavery sentiment was stronger in New England than England proper in those early times.
Of course racism was already a reality almost everywhere and slavery was not to “wither away” as many hoped but to ever more deeply establish itself in the Southern economy. The Constitution of the new Republic, without mentioning the word “slavery” or slaves, carved out a political compromise recognizing its reality. The Civil War of course did not end racism.
In my opinion it is appropriate to recognize human slavery (and the racism and stigmas and inequality it generated) as a deep rooted “Original Sin” of our Republic. It unfortunately remains with us even today, long after the Civil War, long after the rise of Jim Crow segregation and its formal end in the 1960s.
Of course we shouldn't forget it happened or condemn that it did. But it has nothing to do with today. Everyone is free to make of themselves what they will. In fact Democrats by focusing on it and telling blacks they can't succeed do nothing but harm. And of course it's Democrat who keep blacks poor by importing millions of illegal aliens to drive down wages and take their jobs. And it's Democrats who prevent even black parents willing to drive their kids to better schools from being allowed to do that.
There is nothing productive about how it's treated today and a whole lot wrong with how it's treated today