“…at least 97% of all African men, women and children who were kidnapped, sold,
and taken from their homes, were sent somewhere other than the British colonies
of North America. In this context there is no historical basis to claim that the
United States bears primary, or even prominent guilt for the depredations of
centuries of African slavery.
The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution put a formal end to the institution of slavery 89 years after the birth of the Republic; 142 years have passed since this welcome emancipation.
Moreover, the importation of slaves came to an end in 1808 (as provided by the
Constitution), a mere 32 years after independence, and slavery had been outlawed
in most states decades before the Civil War. Even in the South, more than 80% of
the white population never owned slaves. Given the fact that the majority of
today’s non-black Americans descend from immigrants who arrived in this country
after the War Between the States, only a tiny percentage of today’s white
citizens – perhaps as few as 5% -- bear any authentic sort of generational guilt
for the exploitation of slave labor.
In the course of scarcely more than a century following the emergence of the American Republic, men of conscience, principle and unflagging energy succeeded in abolishing slavery not just in the New World but in all nations of the West…This worldwide mass movement (spear-headed in Britain and elsewhere by fervent Evangelical Christians) brought about the most rapid and fundamental transformation in all human history. While the United States (and the British colonies that preceded our independence) played no prominent role in creating the institution of slavery, or even in establishing the long-standing African slave trade pioneered by Arab, Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and other merchants long before the
settlement of English North America, Americans did contribute mightily to the
spectacularly successful anti-slavery agitation. As early as 1646, the Puritan
founders of New England expressed their revulsion at the enslavement of their
fellow children of God”
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
It may just be my imagination, but it sometimes seems like many on the Left absolutely love to use slavery as a big club to show how evil America is. Michael Medved answers these guilt-mongers with an article entitled, Six inconvenient truths about the U.S. and slavery. Slavery was certainly a horrible evil and Mr. Medved in no way wishes to justify it, but he does an excellent job of putting it in perspective. Some excerpts appear below but please take the time to read his entire article.