General Question

blackhorse's avatar

I have never met an African American before, I have just seen them on TV. Is it true that they came here for slavery?

Asked by blackhorse (61points) August 3rd, 2012
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

27 Answers

Coloma's avatar

They did not come voluntarily, they were kidnapped and forced into slavery waay back when in the 1600’s. Slavery was rampantly accepted in America up until the Civil war era which divided the north and south on abolishment of the practice.
Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery during his presidency and this began the civil war in the U.S.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
Response moderated (Writing Standards)
Response moderated
bookish1's avatar

@blackhorse: Welcome to Fluther. It’s true; African Americans’ ancestors were brought here from Africa to work as slaves, usually on large cash-crop plantations such as cotton, rice, etc., but also in peoples’ houses and in other types of businesses. They weren’t all kidnapped; many were purchased from slave dealers in Africa. Slavery was a common practice in some parts of Africa, but it was the Europeans who made it into a racialized practice in the Americas.

(Also, the American Civil War was not started because Lincoln abolished slavery. The Civil War began because the Southern states wanted to secede and form a separate country. Abolition only became a war goal of the North later on in the war.)

Nullo's avatar

@blackhorse Just so you know, the United States is currently at peace with itself. Officially, anyway; we’re having a bit of a culture war at the moment.

I have a suggestion for you: Think of the people outside the res as “we” and not “you.” Your world becomes much larger that way.

blackhorse's avatar

I have been out side my res and I seen some good but over all hate is alive and we’ll never see eye to eye on world will never be again .net people were killed over land that was truly free but that freedom came with are blood are childrens bashed against rocks and are women raped and cut up in peaces.then come too me about a larger world .

ragingloli's avatar

You might want to read on why they wanted to secede.
Like here in the Texas Declaration of Causes

Jenniehowell's avatar

@bookish1 I believe that they were all kidnapped for the most part. Not necessarily by their “owners” but by those in their own homeland who sold them.

Kind of like if I purchase a stolen computer from the hustle man down the street – perhaps he nor I stole it & therefore we may claim its not stolen but when traced back it actually is. Perhaps I &/or the
hustle man had knowledge or intent & perhaps not but either way said item was stolen. Slavery of Africans in America is much the same – plantation owners & slave traders made a purchase & often never were involved in the kidnapping hence they washed their hands of the dirty deed but people in Africa did kidnap them. (if not then please include reference as to situations where slaves volunteered to come without having to be forced via direct blatant kidnapping/capture or via an indentured servitude gone wrong in their own land prior to being sold in America)

cookieman's avatar

Related Note:
Just learned yesterday on FreshAir that the post-Columbus explorers and settlers brought many things to the Americas that hadn’t been there before – specifically domesticated animals and diseases, including malaria.

Many (non-african) slaves were dying left and right from malaria. At some point, it was discovered that African slaves had a higher resistance to malaria and could, therefore continue to work – thus giving owners an economic advantage over other slave owners.

This was a big reason Africans became the slave of choice as it were.

bookish1's avatar

@ragingloli: Thank you for the suggestion; I will look at that!

@Jenniehowell: I understand and agree with what you mean about plantation owners washing their hands of the dirty deeds. Slaves might be passed through the hands of numerous dealers before arriving at their ultimate ‘owner’. I sincerely regret that the words I typed led you to infer that I believe that slaves “volunteered to come without having to be forced.” I never meant that. I was trying to provide a bit more nuance to the first response. The image of Europeans going over to Africa and kidnapping Africans and putting them directly on the boats is a bit schematic. I’m sorry that my first post was unclear.

I don’t know much about the history of black slavery at all, some of my colleagues are experts, but one book I know that was really important was “Africa and Africans in the Making of the Atlantic World, 1400–1800” by John Thornton.

wundayatta's avatar

The land belongs to no one by right. It belongs to those who occupy it so long as they cooperate to guarantee continuous use of it. That means you have to be strong enough to protect your use. Strength generally is built off of numbers of people and social cohesiveness.

Is it social cohesiveness to sell your neighbors into slavery? Is it strength to keep your population low and not be interested in developing technology?

European cultures have dominated because they are more innovative and more cohesive. They have developed ruling systems that keep people feeling like they have a stake in supporting the social system. They benefit from it.

It is not inevitable that this will always be the case. Other peoples will learn and if they want, they will change their values and social structure to something more competitive, and then other people will take over use of the land. It is Darwinian on a social level.

So yes. It is true about slavery. It is true that Europeans took the land from the natives. What is not true is that anyone has any more superiority or inferiority for any of this. Moral arguments are just political arguments. Neither true nor false. They only have power in that they can persuade people to take action.

marinelife's avatar

@blackhorse Native Americans are not native to this land either. They came in earlier waves of migration over the land bridge from Siberia. They fought a lot of wars with each other over land and drove people out of the land. Some of them kept slaves. I’m afraid that the hate and violence that you deplore is part of the human condition not just a part of white culture.

Coloma's avatar

Yes @marinelife‘s sharing. ^
@blackhorse If YOU, as an individual, regardless of your heritage, want to live a happy and productive life you need to drop your anger and attitude over something that happened centuries ago.
Slavery, land theft and oppression is nothing new.
Women were oppressed as well as children for centuries too.

Using the past as an excuse to be angry and embittered in the present is not healthy.
You can’t change history and you are free to do and be whatever you desire, now!

bookish1's avatar

Holy crap, I just trolled myself by looking at this thread again.

As far as I can tell, @blackhorse was not asking how to live a happy and productive life, or why Europe came to dominate the world for centuries.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
Coloma's avatar

@bookish1 Just some words of wisdom to chew on and contributions to the discussion via observations. If one asks a Q. they need to be prepared for a diversity of responses.

bea2345's avatar

@blackhorse – I am not African American, but a black West Indian. But like most African Americans and West Indians I am descended from slaves. I find it interesting that you have never met any Afro-Americans. You need to visit your local library and ask the librarian for some direction on what to read if you are serious about American history and the slave experience.

anartist's avatar

Not all blacks came here as slaves. Blacks have chosen to immigrate for a number of reasons especially in recent years, for many reasons: from seeking opportunity to fleeing deadly regimes in their homelands.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
Response moderated (Off-Topic)
Response moderated (Personal Attack)
Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

And blackhorse’s account is now closed.

Nullo's avatar

I am curious: what did @blackhorse expect from us?

ETpro's avatar

@Nullo That’s exactly what led me to attempt to answer her/him.

Response moderated (Spam)
Jenniehowell's avatar

What the What!?! I leave for a couple days and come back to learn I’ve missed moderated comments & the dude who posed the question has gone off radar. Sheesh!!

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther