End of Slavery in the United States in 1870 Essay
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The article explained how slavery, which has been one of the most sensitive issues in America, came to an end in the United States after more than 250 years of human exploitation. Basically, slavery in the country began after colonists from England settled in America in 1607. Back then, the majority of the slaves were of African-American descent or blacks but some were also Native Americans as this racial basis was upheld by the courts during the 18th century (Wikipedia. org).
From the 16th to the 19th century, an estimated 12 million black Africans were transferred to both North and South America and 645,000 were shipped to the United States.
Although slavery is viewed as an inhuman and immoral act today, it greatly enhanced the productivity of the United States in various sectors. This was a period wherein the agricultural sector such as cotton producers blossomed and greatly contributed to the wealth of America, mainly due to the extensive labor being imposed on the African-American slaves (Wikepedia. org).
However, the American Civil War, which was conflict between the Confederate states and the Federal government of the U. S or a battle between a side that favored the expansion of slavery and the side that opposed it, respectively, signaled the end of slavery. The war, which lasted from 1861 to 1865 and was the deadliest in the history of America, effectively ended slavery and led to the Reconstruction era, which saw the reunion of all states and the restoration of peace (Wikipedia. org). Moreover, the passage of Thirteenth Amendment to the U. S.
Constitution in December 1865 made any form of slavery illegal. By 1870, all slaves were freed from their masters and were given due rights (Wikipedia. org) For me, slavery is one of the most inhumane acts a person could do to another human being as it is like treating him or her like some form of property. It is also highly discriminative and denies a person his or her basic rights. Considering the circumstances of the history of slavery in the United States, it was clear that one of the bases for making a person a slave is his or her skin color.
Historically, almost all the slaves were non-whites or those who belong to the black race. For example, if a person is of African-American descent the rest of society back then would view him or her as someone inferior and undeserving of the rights afforded to the white race. In my view, this is a highly narrow way of viewing and treating any kind of person as a whole. The basis of judging a person should never be on the color of his or her skin. For that matter, the criteria promoting an employee and accepting an applicant to a university should also never include his or her skin color and race.
It is important for society to accept the fact that the world is diverse and should not discriminate against others just because their skin color is different. Doing so would avoid the petty conflicts concerning differences in race and color that are still widespread all across the glob. Moreover, although slavery in the United States was a highly deplorable act, I believe it was an important part of the country’s history as it exposed to the entire world the harsh realities of human exploitation.
It basically opened the eyes of people around the world and enabled them to build a better nation while keeping in mind the mistakes of the past. In short, the country’s bad history of slavery allowed the good things to come out. Taking everything into consideration and based on the statements and facts mentioned above, it can then be deduced that slavery, in any form or kind, is an immoral act that degrades the dignity of a person.
It is important to keep in mind that the slaves, no matter what their skin color is, are still human beings and should therefore enjoy the rights that other people enjoy. The lesson learned from slavery should also apply to everyday situations of discrimination and racism, among many others.
“Slavery in the United States. ” 2008. Wikipedia. org. 10 December 2008 <http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Slavery_in_the_United_States#Civil_War_and_Emancipation>.