I found this important essay by the equally important internet political pundit Larry Elder. I figured I’d link to it, because I’m just tired, fatigued, worn out by the utter stupidity of the “national conversation” about race.
What should happen is that an issue arises, and people should say, “Hmmm… I don’t know much about that issue, I think I’ll read up about it. I think I’ll find out the history, the context, some in-depth stuff about the issue. And I think I’ll take the time necessary to understand it in depth.”
After all, if it’s important, as surely those who believe in it passionately will insist, then it’s worth reading up about it. And, if it concerns many, many people, then it’s worth reading up about it in-depth. You know: getting a good handle on the issue. Checking numerous and conflicting sources, reading many different viewpoints. That kind of thing.
As those of you who follow this blog know, I occasionally mix it up with the foot soldiers of the Race Grievance Industry, and they always come out of it a bit worse for wear. Why? The reason is simple: Most of them have not actually bothered to inform themselves about race relations in America. In fact, most of them are woefully ignorant on the issue about which they’re the most passionate. And most of them hate America…
When asked about this and when asked nicely, “Kindly give me a good reason for your hatred of America, pretty please, ” they give nothing resembling a good reason. Oh, I hear all manner of irrelevant anecdotes, and stories of long, long ago oppressions, larded with mentions of unprovable, and undisprovable, things like “systemic racism,” or “institutional racism,” and “white supremacy,” and “white privilege“… terms that all sound ever so scary and bad, but mean nothing.
Then, invariably, they go straight into the personal attacks. You can’t disagree with them, without yourself being a racist, a liar, a white supremacist, and all the rest. And, if you’re polite and insistent as we are, well then you’re condescending and cruel, you think you’re superior, you’re arrogant and demeaning. Mind you, when they’re calling you all those things, when they’re insulting and demeaning you, well that’s okay. That’s not cruel or condescending or arrogant, or feeling superior.
Then there’s always The Great Fallback: But, slavery!!! Don’t you get it?!? SLAVERY!!!
In this essay we reveal some important facts about slavery… at least as it pertains to the North American slave trade that has the Race Grievance Industry so exercised.(1) These are facts that you didn’t learn in high school or college.
It’s vital that things — all things — have context. The greater context that allows us actually to understand things. Not just to regurgitate things that we’ve been told by idiots, charlatans, hoaxsters, frauds, mountebanks and… power-mad leftists (but I repeat myself).
With proper context, the fact that the North American slave trade was an unalloyed evil remains unchanged. But, one sees that there was a whole lot of unalloyed evil in the world of that day… and that there were a whole lot of really good things too, and that those really good things all could be summed up in two words: Western Civilization.
There’s good and bad all over the world, there always has been. But, these are also very different times. The United States of America — the greatest, most brilliant example of Western Civilization, is absolutely unprecedented.
For the first time in the history of the world, a population-wide movement arose, and came to fruition in the West, and only in the West, to get rid of one of history’s great scourges: slavery.
In fact: “Over 600,000 Americans, in a country with less than 10 percent of today’s population, died in the Civil War that ended slavery. “While slavery was common to all civilizations,” writes [Thomas] Sowell, “…only one civilization developed a moral revulsion against it, very late in its history — Western civilization. … Not even the leading moralists in other civilizations rejected slavery at all.”
Why did I write this post? Between you and me, I’m just tired of all the utter stupidity. We hear nothing whatsoever about the miraculous, stupendous, spectacular thing that is Western Civilization, and everything about imaginary oppressions and injustices all around us. Oh, Western Civilization isn’t perfect, but no one around the world, in all their billions, is clamoring to get to anywhere else. And no one in America is clamoring to get out.
So, without further intro, here are the facts about slavery that you never learned in your history classes:
What You Never Learned in History Class
• “Of all the tragic facts about the history of slavery, the most astonishing to an American today is that, although slavery was a worldwide institution for thousands of years, nowhere in the world was slavery a controversial issue prior to the 18th century.
“People of every race and color were enslaved — and enslaved others. White people were still being bought and sold as slaves in the Ottoman Empire, decades after American blacks were freed.”(2)
Our Comments: Whoa! I thought that only black people were enslaved. And that only white Europeans enslaved black Africans and brought them to America to abuse them. How is it that “People of every race and color were enslaved — and enslaved others“? We certainly didn’t learn that in high school or college!
And…this was interesting: “White people were still being bought and sold as slaves in the Ottoman Empire, decades after American blacks were freed!!!”
How can that be? Everyone knows it’s that evil Western White Man who ‘s responsible for all bad things in the world. Not, certainly, those saintly “People of Color!” It’s only white people who are racists! Only white people who engaged in slavery! Right? Right?!?
Here’s some more:
• “The region of West Africa … was one of the great slave-trading regions of the continent — before, during, and after the white man arrived. It was the Africans who enslaved their fellow Africans, selling some of these slaves to Europeans or to Arabs and keeping others for themselves. Even at the peak of the Atlantic slave trade, Africans retained more slaves for themselves than they sent to the Western Hemisphere. … Arabs were the leading slave raiders in East Africa, ranging over an area larger than all of Europe.”(3)
Our Comments: Wait, wait, wait… “It was the Africans who enslaved their fellow Africans?” Holy flargin’ mackerel! Everyone knows it was Europeans who enslaved Africans — at least that’s what we were taught in school! — not Africans enslaving other Africans!
Nope. It was Africans who enslaved other Africans, and then sold them, generally to Arab slavers. Arabs are known by the American Race Grievance Industry as “People of Color.” Hmmm… How can that be?!?
It just keeps coming! “It was the Africans who enslaved their fellow Africans, selling some of these slaves to Europeans or to Arabs and keeping others for themselves.”
This is the problem when one bothers to make the effort to understand things in depth, rather than just to swallow propaganda from race-baiting hucksters who exploit the laziness and gullibility of others for their own purposes. When one makes the effort to learn then, as it turns out, some of the very comfortable truths we’ve “learned” for certain in the past become not quite so comfortable, not quite so… certain.
This was interesting: “Arabs were the leading slave raiders in East Africa, ranging over an area larger than all of Europe.” But, but, but… Arabs are “People of Color!” They can’t have been slavers! And yet… they were. And continue to be. Slavery continues in Africa, with involvement of Arab, generally Islamic, slave traders.
• “Between 1525 and 1866, in the entire history of the slave trade to the New World, according to the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database, 12.5 million Africans were shipped to the New World. 10.7 million survived the dreaded Middle Passage, disembarking in North America, the Caribbean and South America. And how many of these 10.7 million Africans were shipped directly to North America? Only about 388,000. That’s right: a tiny percentage. In fact, the overwhelming percentage of the African slaves were shipped directly to the Caribbean and South America; Brazil received 4.86 million Africans alone!“(4) [emphasis in the original]
Our Comments: Holy mackerel!!! You mean that of the 10.7 million slaves who survived the horrid Middle Passage, less than 4% managed to wind up in America as slaves of white people, while the other more than 96% wound up enslaved to… other “People of Color?” We definitely never learned that in any American school.
Ouch! So that means that Brazil was a worse slave country than the United States! Yep. A lot worse. Brazil had more than 12 times the number of African slaves as were in America.
Oops. Brazilians are “People of Color!” You know, those people for whom the Race Grievance Industry is so concerned! Shouldn’t the RGI really be ticked off at… Brazil?!?
But they’re not. They’re royally ticked off at… white dudes in America. America, where they had less than 10 freakin’ percent of the African slaves that were being held in Brazil alone! Not even counting the rest of South America! But, but, but…
When you find out some more of the real story behind slavery, you spend a lot of time saying, “But, but but…”
And then… Western Civilization got rid of slavery… and declared it to be evil. Only Western Civilization did that. Remember, the other term for “Western Civilization?” “Western White Men.”
However: slavery was never about race, it was about who was available to be slaves. And Africans made sure that other Africans were available to be had as slaves. How did they do that? Well:
• African tribes who captured other tribes sold them into slavery. For this reason, in 2006, Ghana offered an official apology. Emmanuel Hagan, director of research and statistics at Ghana’s Ministry of Tourism and Diaspora Relations, explains: “The reason why we wanted to do some formal thing is that we want — even if it’s just for the surface of it, for the cosmetic of it — to be seen to be saying ‘sorry’ to those who feel very strongly and who we believe have distorted history, because they get the impression that it was people here who just took them and sold them. It’s something we have to look straight in the face and try to address, because it exists. So we will want to say something went wrong. People made mistakes, but we are sorry for whatever happened.”(5)
Our Comments: Kind of a convoluted way for Mr. Hagan to say that Africans bear just as much guilt for slavery as the slavers — because Africans were the slavers — but that’s, indeed, what he said.
In other words: African tribes waged war against other African tribes, and the victors sold the vanquished off to slavers, which, for the vanquished tribes anyway, turned out to be The Luckiest Circumstance in History… for their much later descendants that is, the vast majority of whom would be born… Americans.
• …slavery occurred on every continent except Antarctica. Europeans enslaved other Europeans. Asians enslaved Asians. Africans enslaved other Africans. Arabs enslaved other Arabs. Native Americans even enslaved other Native Americans.(6)
Our Comments: Well… who knew that Native Americans even enslaved other Native Americans? Not possible, right? I mean, everyone knows that the Indians — oops the Native Americans — were “one with the land.” They were the “noble savages,” the indigenous peoples who “lived in harmony with nature,” and “in peace with their neighbors“… all that crap. Weren’t they?
Nope. They were slavers. They were, are, people. Like everyone else. Just people. No more noble, or ignoble, than any other people on the face of the earth.
There’s a bottom line: A much more in-depth understanding of slavery puts no one in a good light. White Europeans were slavers, and did profit from trafficking in human beings. They were guilty of crimes against humanity. Black Africans were guilty of the very same crimes against humanity as white people. They also profited from trafficking in human beings. Arabs, Asians, Europeans, Africans, South Americans, American Indians, and every race on earth, used slavery.(7)
But then, as we quoted Professor Sowell at top, Western Civilization, and only Western Civilization, “developed a moral revulsion against it“(8) and, “Not even the leading moralists in other civilizations rejected slavery at all.”(9)
But Western Civilization did. So, why do the doofus groups like Black Live Matter, and the Democrat Party, and the American Left and the Race Grievance Industry lash out in such fury at… Western Civilization? Easy: they can. They can riot in the streets, scream down Conservative speakers on college campuses, say the most ludicrous of codswallop online, on television, on the radio, anywhere… do and say practically anything against anyone, with no fear whatsoever about any repercussions whatsoever. Especially against… Western White Men. The very Western White Men who — by the RGI’s own insistence — established the structure in the West that makes it easy, and consequence-free, to slander… Western White Men.
Thanks to the great Larry Elder who put together this handy compendium that helps enrich our understanding of the historical phenomenon that is slavery. I wonder whether there’s anyone in the Race Grievance Industry who would care to comment on it.(10), though I doubt it. They’re generally cowards.
(1) Don’t get me wrong. It is very right to be exercised about the history of black people in America… and then, if you’re a black American, to thank God, that you were… born in… America. America is the least racist nation on the planet. And the above post shows why: One simple reason: Western Civilization. You don’t have to approve of slavery to recognize that there’s no better place in the world to live for anyone — especially black people — than right here in America. There isn’t a country in the world that cxaxn look back on a perfect past, in which
(2) Source: Thomas Sowell, one of the most respected historians, philosophers and thinkers of the past century. Oh, and… a black man. The descendant of slaves in America.
(3) Also Thomas Sowell.
(4) Henry Louis Gates, Harvard’s Department of African and African American Studies professor. A black man. A leftist black man.
(5) Larry Elder (a black man) (here)
(6) Also, Larry Elder, in the same publication as linked above in Note #5.
(7) It required Western Civilization again — that dreaded Western White Man — even to conceive of the very concept of “crimes against humanity,” a concept that didn’t even exist in any culture’s thoughts prior to its formulation in America after World War II. The point is that there was no such thing as a “crime against humanity” before Western Civilization came up with the concept. When the Race Grievance Industry talks about “Crimes Against Humanity,” they’re tacitly paying tribute to… Western White Men, who actually came up with the very notion of… “Crimes Against Humanity.”
(8) Also Thomas Sowell.
(9) Thomas Sowell again.
(10) In my back and forths with people like Brothawolf and Abagond, they constantly harped on the idea that I didn’t produce “sources.” They produced “sources,” but they were Stormfront-type sources. Some racist, completely non-credible internet commentator would say something that would seem to corroborate their point of view, and they’d crow that they’d proven what they said. I then made the obvious point that for every “source” that they could produce, I could produce another that would completely contradict what they said. I figured that was a fruitless process, so I supported the idea that we should try to approach all this using logic, or thought exercises, or simple ratiocination. Well, as it turns out, the Left is not good at… thinking. They’re good at following, so my attempts to goad the Left and the RGI into doing some independent thinking were unsuccessful.