What is Slavery and Who is Enslaved?
Just who is a slave in this day and age? Is slavery akin to skin color? Or is slavery akin to social status?
Is racism slavery? I think not.
If you are white are you subject to slavery? Of course you are.
The American government enslaved its population when it went bankrupt in 1937. Every child born was required to be issued a birth certificate. Was that to prove you were born? No—it was so every child could be traded on the bond market. It didn’t/doesn’t matter what ‘color’ that child is.
Does that child receive income from those trades? I think not. Let’s look at definitions of Slavery:
Related to slavery: History of slavery
n. pl. slav·er·ies
1. The condition in which one person is owned as property by another and is under the owner’s control, especially in involuntary servitude.
a. The practice of owning slaves.
b. A mode of production in which slaves constitute the principal workforce.
3. The condition of being subject or addicted to a specified influence.
4. A condition of hard work and subjection: wage slavery.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Law) the state or condition of being a slave; a civil relationship whereby one person has absolute power over another and controls his life, liberty, and fortune
2. the subjection of a person to another person, esp in being forced into work
3. the condition of being subject to some influence or habit
4. (Industrial Relations & HR Terms) work done in harsh conditions for low pay
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
(ˈsleɪ və ri, ˈsleɪv ri)
1. the condition of a slave; bondage.
2. the keeping of slaves as a practice or institution.
3. a state of subjection like that of a slave.
4. severe toil; drudgery.
syn: slavery, bondage, servitude refer to involuntary subjection to another or others. slavery emphasizes the idea of complete ownership and control by a master: to be sold into slavery. bondage indicates a state of subjugation or captivity often involving burdensome and degrading labor: in bondage to a cruel master. servitude is compulsory service, often such as is required by law: penal servitude.
Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
See also captivity.
the movement for the abolition of slavery, especially Negro slavery in the U.S. — abolitionist, n.
the condition or quality of being a helot; serfdom or slavery. Also helotage, helotry.
1. the state or period of being indentured or apprenticed; apprenticeship.
2. the state or period of being a servant bound to service for a specified time in return for passage to a colony.
a doctrine that advocates slavery. — servility, n.
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Just because no one told us we are slaves doesn’t negate the issue. We are bound by all sorts of regulations not conducive to our founding fathers’ Constitution.
Our courts are run by Maritime Law in order to entice us into giving up our Constitutional rights.
We need to bring back our Constitutional courts.
I’m not so sure that’s a good idea. I haven’t done a comparison of the two yet, but you can compare them below. They’re really selling the one they want you to buy, so make sure you you view both.
The ‘1776 Project’
The 1619 Project
At first glance, I did not see any Indians in the second. They were enslaved, too, so the Puritans [my ancestors] could take their lands. I imagine they were enslaved in greater numbers than any other race. As usual, we only get the half of the story they want us to have. Should we give them taxpayer dollars, too?
And her book:
WAIT—WAIT… Aren’t the people of The United States of America bought and sold from the minute they are born?
Indians, Africans, and people brought from across the pond were all bound into slavery or servitude. If Spain and England wanted a people’s land and/or gold and riches, they captured or killed them or sold them. Ireland was a land of the enslaved for a time.
Tribes in Africa fought each other and the losing tribe was enslaved. Many were sold to slave traders of different skin colors, but the enslavement of many Africans was perpetrated by their own.
Let’s look at History.
In 1494, Portugal and Spain signed Treaty of Tordesillas, splitting the world into two halves. It didn’t matter that other lands were occupied.
So Kings and Queens divvied up the world due to a pathological sense of entitlement.
Slavery has existed since the beginning of time. Let’s take Greece for example.
There were two main ways: the first was to be the child of a slave and the second was captivity in war. In some ancient societies, there was a third way, free people could be enslaved within their community and end up as slaves. In some cities this was forbidden, for example with Solon’s reforms in Athens it was impossible for an Athenian to be enslaved due to debt.
For what purposes were slaves used?
A basic purpose was domestic work such as washing, mopping, going to the spring to carry water, chopping wood. Another category of slaves were those who were used for labor and production of wealth in the fields, mines, workshops. Also in a house, there was a slave who was the steward of all the other slaves, so something like a manager. Almost all the officials in the ancient states were slaves. In ancient Athens, for example, the policemen were slaves who belonged to the state.
Agriculture, a common use for slaves, black-figure neck-amphora by the Antimenes Painter, British Museum
Were there consequences for abusing a slave?
A master could do whatever he wanted with his servant, including killing him. On the other hand, slaves were property and there was a limit because if you killed your slave, you would destroy your property. Therefore, masters were very inventive in the forms of punishment and did not destroy their property. There are cases where a master could be put in trouble for the way he treated his slave by other members of society who had their own reasons for denouncing him. There were such cases that were brought to the courts.
What were the numbers of freemen and slaves in the population of a city?
The difference from society to society in ancient times could be enormous. In Sparta, for example, slaves outnumbered Spartans by 5 to 7 times. They were perhaps over 70% of the total population. In other societies, the percentage of slaves was most likely small, on the order of 5-10%. In Athens, it was about 30% of the population, and it is quite possible that it could have been as high as 50%.
Were there slaves who won their freedom?
Most slaves who gained their freedom did so in two ways: the first was by cashing in their freedom. Most notably, those slaves who worked alone or engaged in occupations that allowed them to save some of their earnings were eventually able to redeem their freedom from their masters. The second has to do with the mass manumission of slaves, especially under conditions of internal unrest and war. When a state was in great danger, it could free slaves and use them as soldiers. We know that in 406 BC, during the Peloponnesian War, because the very critical naval battle with the Spartans of Arginousa was being prepared in Athens and there were not many Athenians left to man the fleet, they freed thousands of slaves and at the same time made them Athenian citizens, in order to fight in the naval battle.
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The moral of the story is this:
We are all slaves. Many aren’t aware we are. I wasn’t. Let’s come together [whatever color skin we have] and stop the madness.
We can stop our enslavers if we stop fighting each other.
Copyright January 2021 by Joyce Bowen
For educational use
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