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Diary    H2'ed 9/9/17

The Transmutation of Slavery: From Persecution to "Free Market" Exclusion

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Fernwood [Mississippi?] .Colored. School, circa 1946
Fernwood [Mississippi?] .Colored. School, circa 1946
(Image by Mennonite Church USA Archives)
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Chattel slavery based on color differences is a curse that won't abate. Short of genocide and spoliation, it's the most coercive and unjust form of man's mistreatment of man. It has left super -- fund sized toxic pools of hate and fear. Such a coercive Peculiar Institution generated hatred and fear in both masters and slaves. Masters developed ego - defensive excuses about lazy, violent black slaves. And masters, being pillars of this evil society, infected other whites, who aped them with their hatred and fear.

Although slavery was violently destroyed, Reconstruction was abandoned. When Union troops were removed, as a result of the corrupt deal between Republicans and Democrats, extremely poor blacks were left among much larger numbers of angry, fearful, armed whites. During the "Redemption," KKK, etc., forcibly dispossessed and segregate the blacks. They didn't just lynch. They engaged in ethnic cleansing of plantation land, towns, and whole counties. They ran fraudulent elections with forced exclusions to get rid of black officials. They provided extremely inferior segregated education. They criminalized poverty -- related behavior, fined blacks, and imprisoned them as "convict labor," slave prisoners.

Some blacks "escaped" the South, but more corrupt deals between Republicans and Democrats institutionalized racism. To summarize "Who Really Got Handouts," by IraKatznelson (New York Times 8/13/17) Roosevelt's New Deal laws needed racist southern Democrat politicians to pass. So they were written, and then administered, by local whites, in such a way that blacks were effectively excluded. The Social Security law of 1935 excluded maids and farm workers, as did the Fair Labor Standards Act even though these were the dominant occupations of southern blacks and southwestern Latinos. Local whites administered the GIBill, also tending to grant blacks only low -- level vocational training.

Thus persecuted, blacks remained poor and uneducated and less employed or less paid. In our capitalist society, even with voting participation, with wealth vastly unequal, two parties are both kept corrupted. The corrupted selection stonewalls changes that would interfere with wealth concentrations vacuuming up money. Vastly more is vacuumed up than trickles down! In a money - based "free market" consumption society obvious persecution is thus transmuted into money - based discrimination. Now it doesn't look as bad as slavery, does it? It just looks like they're poor, that's why can't get the goods whites have. Then it becomes, if you're poor, get a job (forget the "paying a living wage!") Thus color -- blind equality before the law, a good sounding ideal, became a cover for opposition to affirmative action.

However, almost all Americans: white, black, Latino, are held down from buying necessary or reasonably desired goods (from basic health care to a secure retirement) by this corrupt bipartisan system. Only affirmativc action, not race based, but based on family income, and talents and including whites might eventually soften this. But the powerful corrupting wealth concentrations have no interest in this.


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I could be Bernie Sanders older brother by similarity. I was born in Manhattan, 1940, he, about a year later, in Brooklyn. I too am a white male American. A retired college professor of philosophy. We both were born of Jewish parents. I was (more...)

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