Sunday, March 15, 2020

1619: Most of the founders, including Thomas Jefferson, opposed slavery’s continued existence, despite the fact that many of them owned slaves

In Chapter 9 of The British Are Coming (The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775-1777), Rick Atkinson notes that
Political turmoil in America gave some slaves hope, and for months, runaway blacks had sought protection from the regulars in the belief that British views on slavery differed markedly from those of Southern planters.  In truth, although slavery had begun to disappear in England and Wales, Britain's colonial economy was built on the scaffold of bondage. Among many examples, the almost 200,000 slaves in Jamaica outnumbered whites 15 to 1, and an uprising in 1760 had been suppressed by shooting several hundred blacks. The slave trade carried in British ships had never been more prosperous than in the years before the American rebellion. And Britain would remain the world's foremost slave-trading nation into the nineteenth century.
[Lord] Dunmore's initial muttering to London in the early summer [of 1775] about emancipation was largely a bluff. He recognized that bound labor was critical to the white commonwealth he governed. The King's government was unenthusiastic about wrecking colonial economies or encouraging slave revolts that might infect the West Indies.

Controversies and conflicts were brewing between the English crown and its American subjects. One of those issues was slavery.
Taking on the 1619 project in the New York Times with nothing but incontrovertible facts (thanks to Glenn Reynolds), PJ Media's Bryan Preston goes three years back, to the Spring of 1772, having
written before about how slavery vexed the American revolutionaries. That the Declaration of Independence was a radical assault on monarchy and rule by fiat rather than rule by justice and law. That the revolution was aimed at decentralizing power, which is a principle at the heart of most of our political debates today.

Most of the founders opposed slavery’s continued existence, despite the fact that many of them actively owned slaves. Slavery was an abhorrent part of the economy most of them wanted gone. Among other things, it violated the ideals they would put their lives, treasure and sacred honor on the line for.

Those revolution debates were far from the first involving slavery in the New World. The debate goes back at least to America’s first colonial century. In 1772, 28-year-old Thomas Jefferson represented Albemarle County in Virginia’s colonial House of Burgesses. On March 20, the House approved sending a strong message to King George III. Jefferson helped draft that message. Its title: Virginia Colony to George III of England, April 1, 1772, Petition Against the Importation of Slaves from Africa.

The brief petition warns King George III that while many English citizens profit from the slave trade, it was an “inhumanity” that posed a serious threat to his American colonies.

 … The future revolutionaries warned him. They put it in writing that continuing the slave trade could bring about “the most destructive influence.” You can read the rest from the Library of Congress at the link above or here, including the notes from the House of Burgesses Journal.

King George, ever the tyrant, was also pro-slavery. England had yet to abolish slavery or ban the importation of slaves to Great Britain. It would not do that until 1807, or abolish slavery across the Empire until 1833. The Virginia Petition was 30 years ahead of the crown.

It was also a year ahead of the Boston Tea Party (1773) and four years before the Declaration of Independence (1776). In between, in 1775, Thomas Paine anonymously published a stirring attack on slavery, calling it “wicked.”

 … When the founders met in Philadelphia in 1776 to draft what would become the Declaration of Independence, they debated slavery. Most wanted it done away with, but they recognized that they had a war against a vast and powerful (and at that time, pro-slave) empire to win. They had to hang together, as Benjamin Franklin said, or they would surely hang separately. The founders wrote a passage in the Declaration that made the king’s preservation of the slave trade one of the grievances that caused the revolution, alongside the taxation and other causes. According to Jefferson, they deleted that clause to keep Georgia and South Carolina in the revolutionary fold. Abolition would have to wait. The price would be the Civil War, America’s deadliest conflict.

King George III rejected Virginia’s petition to end the inhuman slave trade, and so it continued. But it should be noted that, far from the New York Times’ and the Howard Zinn-ified left’s depiction of America as founded on slavery, America’s leaders were among the first in the world to try and stop the slave trade, which over time would have strangled slavery itself. A future president was centrally involved. Thomas Jefferson deserves better than how his hometown Charlottesville, Va., now treats him. He introduced a bill banning the importation of slaves into Virginia in 1778, three years before the American Revolution ended.

The founders knew full well the implications they kept in the Declaration when they included the words “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.” They knew this meant men and women and people of all races, and infused this equality into America’s DNA at the founding.
Related: 1619, Mao, & 9-11: History According to the NYT — Plus, a Remarkable Issue of National Geographic Reveals the Leftists' "Blame America First" Approach to History

• "Out of the Revolution came an anti-slavery ethos, which never disappeared": Pulitzer Prize Winner James McPherson Confirms that No Mainstream Historian Was Contacted by the NYT for Its 1619 History Project

• Gordon Wood: "The Revolution unleashed antislavery sentiments that led to the first abolition movements in the history of the world" — another Pulitzer-Winning Historian Had No Warning about the NYT's 1619 Project

• Clayborne Carson: Black Historian Kept in the Dark About 1619

• If historians did not hear of the NYT's history (sic) plan, chances are great that the 1619 Project was being deliberately kept a tight secret

• Oxford Historian Richard Carwardine: 1619 is “a preposterous and one-dimensional reading of the American past”

• World Socialists: "the 1619 Project is a politically motivated falsification of history" by the New York Times, "the mouthpiece of the Democratic Party"

• Allen C Guelzo: The New York Times offers bitterness, fragility, and intellectual corruption—The 1619 Project is not history; it is conspiracy theory

Fake But Accurate: The People Behind the NYT's 1619 Project Make a "Small" Clarification, But Only Begrudgingly and Half-Heartedly, Because Said Mistake Actually Undermines The 1619 Project's Entire Premise

• Leslie Harris on 1619: Far from being fought to preserve slavery, the Revolutionary War became a primary disrupter of slavery in the North American Colonies

• Sean Wilentz on 1619: the movement in London to abolish the slave trade formed only in 1787, largely inspired by… American (!) antislavery opinion that had arisen in the 1760s and ’70s

• 1619 & 1772: Most of the founders, including Jefferson, opposed slavery’s continued existence, despite many of them owning slaves; And Britain would remain the world's foremost slave-trading nation into the nineteenth century

• Wilfred Reilly on 1619: Slavery was legal in Britain in 1776, and it remained so in all overseas British colonies until 1833

• James Oakes on 1619: "Slavery made the slaveholders rich; But it made the South poor; And it didn’t make the North rich — So the legacy of slavery is poverty, not wealth"

1619: Wondering Why Slavery Persisted for Almost 75 Years After the Founding of the USA? According to Lincoln, the Democrat Party's "Principled" Opposition to "Hate Speech"

Who, Exactly, Is It Who Should Apologize for Slavery and Make Reparations? America? The South? The Descendants of the Planters? …

 • 1619: No wonder this place is crawling with young socialists and America-haters — the utter failure of the U.S. educational system to teach the history of America’s founding

• Denying the grandeur of the nation’s founding—Wilfred McClay on 1619: "Most of my students are shocked to learn that that slavery is not uniquely American"

• The Confederate Flag: Another Brick in the Leftwing Activists' (Self-Serving) Demonization of America and Rewriting of History

• Anti-Americanism in the Age of the Coronavirus, the NBA, and 1619

1 comment:

Kaiser Derden said...

so how is the martial law lite coming along ... ?