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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 1/14/21

Africa was the Amazon of the Slave Trade, and Jesus just the Uber Driver

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Africa exported 12 million souls to the New World. Of this wretched cargo, 11 ½ million went to Brazil, Mexico, Cuba, the Caribbean, and rest of South America. Only ½ million went to the North America colonists, or 5% of the slaves shipped.

If there is moral redemption in numbers and percentages, the colonists fall on the lower scale of the sin spectrum. But there was nothing remarkable about slavery in those days; it was an entrepreneurial business. Slavery was embraced by all major religions. For once, Christianity, Islam, and African Animism came together, not to mention Hindu Caste System, or the Buddha accepting slaves, or the fact that Native Americans had slaves. Throughout history, we all had slaves. When profit is to be made, money is the ultimate ear-bender.

Africa was the preeminent entrepreneur in the sordid Atlantic slave trade business. They provided the product to the market place, 12 million of them, no easy task. Considering that the product was their own people--sons, daughters, and countrymen--it staggers the imagination. But the various West African countries, their kings and tribal chiefs, silenced their better angels, and got very rich. Buying a slave is bad enough, making one out of your own children is worse. Any mother would tell you that. And make no mistake, no European made a slave out of that 12 million, they were already slaves when the English, Spanish, Dutch, and Portuguese ships arrived at the African warehouses. Souls were plentiful and prices were dickered and paid on the docks. To be sure, slave ships were not Uber drivers, they were subcontractors, but I see guys in U-Haul trucks today delivering Amazon products. Everybody gets a cut.

Africa's transformation of their people into slaves was undoubtedly violent; most were probably broken like horses, tethered and whipped, and raped, and made ready to ship. It is likely the worst genocide in history, trading their people for coins, and the plan was not to kill them, but turn them into obedient zombies. Villagers build wood palisades around their villages, to little avail. Tribal chiefs were too powerful. Finally, England, the U.S., and others outlawed it. Africa did nothing to stop slavery. African rulers, like drug dealers deprived of their customer base, were outraged.

By today's standards, all African descendants are complicit, and regarding original sin, they fall into the "most evil" category. In 1800, there was not a single black slave in North or South America, until Africa got into the business. But do I think blacks should decry, censure, and totally denounce their ancestors, or African Americans in general, because of the past?

The man who first invented fire was likely a cannibal, but when it gets cold outside, I am thankful for fire. The man or woman who invented metal, may have used it to roast a baby, but I appreciate my fork. The descendants of those people are all of us.

If slavery was legal today, the slaves would likely be Chinese, since Jeff Bezos could ship them from his warehouses at half the price. Free return, however, might be difficult.

Hating the past is an affliction with no cure. All of us have sins. Most of us have gotten better. Even sinful people do and have done great things. Our divisive actions today serve no purpose, except repeating history, and fixating on hatred. Words on the internet multiply like cancer. We must not become the disease.

(Article changed on January 14, 2021 at 19:43)

(Article changed on January 15, 2021 at 06:01)

(Article changed on January 16, 2021 at 19:19)

(Article changed on January 18, 2021 at 01:54)

(Article changed on January 18, 2021 at 03:36)

(Article changed on January 18, 2021 at 05:12)

 

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Conceived on west coast, born on east coast, returned to northwest spawning grounds. Never far from water.


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