Skip to comments.A secular Jew makes a surprising discovery about Christians and American slavery
Posted on 04/23/2019 1:19:22 AM PDT by CondoleezzaProtege
"Christians ended slavery." Do you think thats a conservative simpletons mock-worthy bombast, embarrassing the rest of us with his black-and-white, unapologetic caricature of American history? No. It is the considered conclusion of a Nobel laureate, a former communist, a secular Jew, and arguably the foremost scholar on American slavery.
Robert Fogel (1922-2013), the son of Russian Jewish immigrants, was president of Cornell Universitys American Youth for Democracy, investing eight years promoting communism. Meanwhile, he married Enid Morgan, an African-American woman, consequently suffering the ugliness of American racism personally. Eventually, he rejected communism. Apparently, the data didnt support it.
Fogel was driven by data, perhaps the purest pursuer of empirical truth Ive ever met in academia...
Fogels bean-counting approach led to his discovery that plantations, organized in a business-like fashion with their gang system, had an assembly line-like efficiency. Hence Southern slavery was fantastically profitable.
He concluded that if the Civil War had not been sparked when it was, the South would have continued to outpace the North, adapt slavery to industrialization, been unconquerable if a later Civil War had broken out, and likely would have spread slavery indefinitely. Slavery was on the ascendancy at the outbreak of the Civil War.
Furthermore and here it sounds scandalous most Southern slaves were treated materially well by their owners. The average slave consumed more calories and lived longer than the average, white, Northern city-dweller.
The moral question: If Southern slavery was profitable, even providing for the slaves a relatively decent material life, then why is it evil? If slavery is wrong, then, we have to look beyond the beans that can be counted, the dollars that can be earned, the efficiency that can be charted. The answer is found in a system of morality that comes from beyond mere materialism...
(Excerpt) Read more at acton.org ...
Regardless, the ideological and theological origins of the abolition movement (both in USA and UK) are not discussed enough in historical discourse.
The debate about slavery far preceded the 19th Century as is noted by the 3/5ths clause in the Constitution and such -- but the seeds of abolition were very much present even before the USA's official founding. And it's because these seeds were rooted in the highly religious soil of the 13 colonies.
The Christian Byzantine Empire was the first nation to abolish slavery
And then wiped out by the Muslims, who are the world’s chief ringleaders of slavery.
A very good read
Which meant in agriculture, you were either a slave owner, or a poor subsistence farmer unable to do much more than feed the family. This fundamental inequality IMO had much to do with the deterioration in race relations over the ~200 years that slavery had been legal.
The devastation throughout the South the carnage of the Civil War caused many of the same whites to mistakenly regard blacks as the cause of their suffering rather than the immorality of the antebellum system.
The Romans provided free bread for Roman citizens and also for part of the slave population, depending on the reliability of grain shipments from Egypt and elsewhere.
There are other examples. There were charity houses in Colonial America and in Europe, but the "poor houses" barely gave people anything. The common theme throughout human was that you either worked or were supported by their family. Otherwise, you starved to death.
The slavery system was evil in a myriad of ways (separating family members, denying human dignity, cruel treatment at the hands of some owners, etc.) However, it also provided food, clothing, housing, medical care, etc. to slaves because slaves were valuable, and the owners were financially (and also socially) motivated to take care of them. I know that sounds controversial today, but it is mostly true.
Moreover, American slavery gets all the press, from both the left and the globalists. The truth is that American slaveholders were among the most congenial and caring of the bunch compared to the Muslim slavers, whose cruelty and genocidal tendencies were legendary.
People who lose their religious faith often transfer that faith to a secular cause, with the same religious fervor (communism, environmentalism, anti-Trumpism, etc.). They are just not rational, and it is harmful to bring toward a secular goal.
Very good article.
During the war, what was the Souths second largest city?
Any place the Army of the Potomac happened to be on any given day.
Thanks for posting this!
This is the argument that Democrats make for socialism today: "you are better off surrendering your freedom and being a ward of the state
." And a lot of people buy it.
Good article. I am going to send this to friends.
sorry, stopped reading after the second insulting sentence!
“conservative simpletons mock-worthy bombast, embarrassing the rest of us”
Yes, I strongly disagree with that idea that slavery was going to continue to expand, or even be profitable . Machines (coal, steam, then diesel and gss) had it beat everywhere . And it was never profitable outside of large, single crop plantation s.
It took the Muslims 800 years to conquer Byzantium and the had help from the Roman Catholics in the 3rd Crusade.
I think the author was being ironic not critical.
Quite a few minority musicians in the 20th century were slave owners, known as pimps, before they became famous.
They collected the money and took care of their stock. paid rents, bailed them out, dressed them, kicked them out of the shop if they didn’t earn their keep.
And the record labels like Atlantic did it to their stable too.
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