Friday, January 16, 2009

"Slavery by Another Name" and was abortion legalized for racist reasons?

I am deep into a horrifying book, "Slavery by Another Name", about how the slave states found a way around the proclamation of freedom for blacks to enslave them again through incarceration and convict labor. There is good reason you won't see many books published about this practice, because racists have been too powerful. In fact, I think the publishers capitalized on Obama's run for president to bring it out now. This is a grim dark story some are bound to think would be better left unexplored.
But this author, Douglas A. Blackmon, was able to research the records of jails in the south and found the evidence of years of black convict labor sold to railroad companies, coal mine owners, steel industries developing in the south, all in need of cheap labor which they got in blacks incaracerated for minor reasons and often held for years, beaten, starved, and worked long hours in utmost servitude. In fact since nobody owned them but possibly the Sheriffs who had charge of selling their services, and the companies who bought them, there was little incentive to treat them even as well as slaves. Many many black men died under the terrible conditions convict laborers were subjected to, after they were ostensibly freed but were having a terrible time finding employers to pay them for their work.
The one hope the blacks had was that the federal government mandated so much money allotted to educate their children. At first the allotment was equal which infuriated whites who felt their higher taxes entitled them to more money for their schools, a policy they changed and is still pretty much in play. But it was not until after World War II and the Civil Right movement to desegregate schools that blacks started making more progress toward real equality. Until then they were held down as equal but separate.
So racism has long been a way of thinking in our country. As a child, I remember lynchings were still happening on a regular basis. There was profit in convict labor as there was in slave labor from which those who did the work did not benefit. The greed motive is very often behind racism, a policy where the whites in control will be the only ones to benefit from the labor of others. Slavery by another name kept many blacks from ever earning anything from their own work, long after slavery had been banished. A way could be found by the unscrupulous to continue it.
I am considering that legalized abortion also has some of its origin in racism, since blacks and other minorities are most likely to need public assistance. When I went on welfare the first time in the early eighties it was still a lot more difficult for blacks to get jobs than whites, so if they were not to starve they applied for welfare and food stamps and public housing. Desegregation in the job place as well as in the schools was an obvious need. If America wanted to cut the welfare rolls, it had to make it easier for minorities to get jobs. And it had to pay them a fair wage so they could sustain their families.
But I think some have proclaimed that we must offer legalized abortion as well when parents cannot afford their children, at the same time that public assistance is made harder to get, which is what has come about through powerful people in command. Again, the same end is desired that different kinds of slavery and bad treatment brought about, a significant amount of deaths and therefore a lowering of this population or atleast holding it in check among those who cannot 'afford' the children they are conceiving.
That is my big objection to the democratic party becoming the party of pro choice, thus insuring that most blacks will accept pro choice because this is the party that helped them to advance civil rights. I wonder what Catholic John Kennedy would have to say about that, who did so much to advance civil rights as did Lyndon Johnson. Would he have become a Catholic for Choice as his brother Ted Kennedy did. I think the idea would be that you can't kill off enough blacks and other minorities, although their Catholicism makes it harder to convince hispanics to have abortions. I am for one furious at the emotional blackmail the abortion advocates have perpetuated on blacks, and who will surely reward them with approval if they go along. I would say that this beleagured race does not want to see treachery where it exists. Anyone who advocates population control through abortion should be suspect as a racist in my opinion. These people don't like kids. People who like kids are simply a lot more apt to reject the abortion solution. Racism has resulted in encouraging blacks to hate themselves just because whites insist there is something inferior about them. It is not too big of a stretch to get them to hate the kids they keep conceiving in poor circumstance enough to abort them. I am not willing to see any kids die in abortion, black, yellow, brown or white.
If we love kids we are going to keep fighting for other solutions besides killing them to solve our problems. We are going to commit ourselves to solutions that do not require bloodshed of the unborn. We are going to question the necessity of a killing policy to keep our population under control We are going to believe that with divine help we can find another way.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

It sounds like a fascinating read Gerry. I can't imagine living in a time or place where lynchings were happening.

I would consider where I live to be a fairly racist place. I know racism still runs rampant in our country. Some people and some areas make no effort to let it be known either.


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