An ancient evil abolished.
“No topic in American history is more enduringly controversial than slavery. It sits at the heart of every indictment of America and our founding principles. It is central to battles over critical race theory, the removal of monuments, and the renaming of places and institutions. It is invoked in debates over policing and welfare.
For the New York Times’ 1619 Project, slavery is foundational to American identity. Its beginning is our “true founding.” We should “reframe our understanding of U.S. history by considering 1619 as our country’s origin point.” Slavery is “the seed of so much of what has made us unique” and should sit at “the center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are as a country.” Yet this claim lacks the global perspective we need to examine what is actually uniquely American. Where did American slavery come from? How did it differ from other systems of bondage and forced labor?
Slavery was a human crime of which Americans were one part. It proliferated for millennia before slaves are first known to have been sold in Virginia, in 1619. It persisted long after it was abolished in the United States in 1865. It was practiced by people far from our shores without American influence. People were enslaved in virtually every society from which American slaves were descended. Few of the world’s major civilizations have been innocent of it.
In the story of world slavery, Americans loom much larger in the history of abolition than in the history of enslavement. Seymour Drescher, one of the great historians of slavery, summarizes the landscape in 1775
— National Review: The 1619 False-History Project
— The Popes and Slavery. Setting the record straight
— Dinesh D’Souza: Colonialism
—- Progressives and Afro Americans
Note: I am and have always been a political Independent. I try to take what I consider to be the wheat and leave the chaff from all political parties and interests. SH