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Atualizado: 16 de jul. de 2023

Slavery is a terrible crime. However, today it doesn’t exist in any official capacity, although from time to time we hear stories of how a person was enslaved. The thing to consider in this day and age is the burden the western world has to bear for crimes carried out by generations in the past.

So, the question I asked myself is why should I suffer all the scandalmongering in international media about how black people are the victims of racial abuse when today these are isolated cases that have absolutely nothing to do with me. As a white man, the pressure of guiltiness for acts carried out two centuries ago by countryfolk of the time for something which has nothing to bear against me is not very flattering to say the least. To substantiate how long ago, let’s look at the following data which is documented online.

The first country to fully outlaw slavery was France in 1315, but it was later used in its colonies. The first and only country to self-liberate from slavery was actually a former French colony, Haiti, as a result of the Revolution of 1791 to 1804.

One of the first countries to completely abolish slavery was the British Empire in 1807. Then one might want to consider European slavery that occurred in large scale by Muslims in North Africa between 1530 and 1780 which may have encouraged some reciprocity. Even the Portuguese who went to Africa to trade commodities were pointed towards human trafficking by locals, and consequently enticed into the lucrative trade.

For generations in Holland, people were born into slavery. They were forced into slave labour for their entire lives, serving the Dutch plantation owners. On 1 July 1863, slavery was abolished by law in Suriname and the Caribbean islands, then colonies of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Passed by Congress on January 31, 1865, and ratified on December 6, 1865, the 13th Amendment abolished slavery in the United States.

Slavery was stopped in European Portugal in 1761. However, slavery within the African Portuguese colonies was only abolished in 1869.

Trade in African slaves had been abolished in Egypt in 1877, and the Bureau had been created to search for unlawful caravans and enforce the abolition. It appears that African nations should be held accountable for promoting slavery in the first place.

There were three types of enslavement in Ancient Egypt: chattel slavery, bonded labor, and forced labor. But even these seemingly well-differentiated types of slavery are susceptible to individual interpretation. Egypt's labor culture encompassed many people of various social ranks.

Now I’ve been told that those responsible are African themselves, as they are the instigators of slavery. I took it upon myself to research the subject. The following paragraph describes how one African sees it herself.

Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani is a Nigerian journalist who has written a sensitive essay, published in the Wall Street Journal, on the African role in the trans-Atlantic and trans-Saharan slave trade. She observes that the four-hundredth anniversary of the arrival of slaves in Virginia coincides with questions about guilt and responsibility and a debate in the United States about reparations to the descendants of slaves.

A final note is about a country in the north west of Africa called Mauritania which was the last to make slavery illegal in 1981. However, until today there are still a considered 20% of the population that is enslaved, but you never hear from sympathy seekers anything about slavery from the horse’s mouth.

I’m entirely against slavery and the aftermath which includes repentance felt by all and those who had past generations enslaved, and we should not forget this shameful history.

Have a wonderful day!

Prof. Carl Boniface

Vocabulary builder:

Carried out (phrasal verb) = 1. to bring to a successful issue: complete, accomplish, “He employee carried out the assignment.” 2. to put into execution. “She carried out her job.”

Scandalmongering (n) = a person who spreads scandal or gossip, so it is the exposure, dishing the dirt, mudslinging, muckraking

Countryfolk (n) = people from the same country

Flattering (adj) = gratifying, pleasing, satisfying, satisfactory, pleasurable

Reciprocity (n) = mutuality, exchange, trade, tradeoff, interchange, switch

Reparations (n) = compensations, damages, amends, reimbursements, recompences, restitutions

From the horse’s mouth (idiom) = from a reliable source, on the best authority. For example, I have it from the horse's mouth that he plans to retire next month. Also put as straight from the horse's mouth, this expression alludes to examining a horse's teeth to determine its age and hence its worth.’

Aftermath (n) = result, outcome, upshot, repercussion, aftershock, consequences, aftereffects

Repentance (n) = regret, sorrow, remorse, penitence, atonement, shame, penance

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