Politiquement correct: Attention, un esclavage peut en cacher un autre (No white slaves, please, we’re Americans !)

Slave-table
A worksheet given to an eigth 
Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes There beneath the blue suburban skies… Paul McCartney (1967)
In America you’ll get food to eat Won’t have to run through the jungle And scuff up your feet You’ll just sing about Jesus and drink wine  all day It’s great to be an American Ain’t no lions or tigers ain’t no mamba snake Just the sweet watermelon and the buckwheat cake Everybody is as happy as a man can be Climb aboard little wog sail away with me. Randy Newman
I wrote about slave trade from the view of the recruiter from the slave trade. He is talking, you know, come to America and then talks about using that and I didn’t see another way to do it. I mean, you could say the slave trade is bad, horrendous or a great crime of the nation, but I chose to do differently. Randy Newman
I had this idea of a slave ship and a sea shanty – this guy standing in a clearing, singing to a crowd of natives. These people in my songs don’t know they’re bad. They think they’re fine. I didn’t just want to say, ‘Slavery is awful.’ It’s too easy. I wasn’t doing Roots. Randy Newman
Aujourd’hui on repère les boucs émissaires dans l’Angleterre victorienne et on ne les repère plus dans les sociétés archaïques. C’est défendu. René Girard
Nous sommes entrés dans un mouvement qui est de l’ordre du religieux. Entrés dans la mécanique du sacrilège : la victime, dans nos sociétés, est entourée de l’aura du sacré. Du coup, l’écriture de l’histoire, la recherche universitaire, se retrouvent soumises à l’appréciation du législateur et du juge comme, autrefois, à celle de la Sorbonne ecclésiastique. Françoise Chandernagor
Malgré le titre général, en effet, dès l’article 1, seules la traite transatlantique et la traite qui, dans l’océan Indien, amena des Africains à l’île Maurice et à la Réunion sont considérées comme « crime contre l’humanité ». Ni la traite et l’esclavage arabes, ni la traite interafricaine, pourtant très importants et plus étalés dans le temps puisque certains ont duré jusque dans les années 1980 (au Mali et en Mauritanie par exemple), ne sont concernés. Le crime contre l’humanité qu’est l’esclavage est réduit, par la loi Taubira, à l’esclavage imposé par les Européens et à la traite transatlantique. (…) Faute d’avoir le droit de voter, comme les Parlements étrangers, des « résolutions », des voeux, bref des bonnes paroles, le Parlement français, lorsqu’il veut consoler ou faire plaisir, ne peut le faire que par la loi. (…) On a l’impression que la France se pose en gardienne de la mémoire universelle et qu’elle se repent, même à la place d’autrui, de tous les péchés du passé. Je ne sais si c’est la marque d’un orgueil excessif ou d’une excessive humilité mais, en tout cas, c’est excessif ! […] Ces lois, déjà votées ou proposées au Parlement, sont dangereuses parce qu’elles violent le droit et, parfois, l’histoire. La plupart d’entre elles, déjà, violent délibérément la Constitution, en particulier ses articles 34 et 37. (…) les parlementaires savent qu’ils violent la Constitution mais ils n’en ont cure. Pourquoi ? Parce que l’organe chargé de veiller au respect de la Constitution par le Parlement, c’est le Conseil constitutionnel. Or, qui peut le saisir ? Ni vous, ni moi : aucun citoyen, ni groupe de citoyens, aucun juge même, ne peut saisir le Conseil constitutionnel, et lui-même ne peut pas s’autosaisir. Il ne peut être saisi que par le président de la République, le Premier ministre, les présidents des Assemblées ou 60 députés. (…) La liberté d’expression, c’est fragile, récent, et ce n’est pas total : il est nécessaire de pouvoir punir, le cas échéant, la diffamation et les injures raciales, les incitations à la haine, l’atteinte à la mémoire des morts, etc. Tout cela, dans la loi sur la presse de 1881 modifiée, était poursuivi et puni bien avant les lois mémorielles. Françoise Chandernagor
Les « traites d’exportation » des Noirs hors d’Afrique remontent au VIIe siècle de notre ère, avec la constitution d’un vaste empire musulman qui est esclavagiste, comme la plupart des sociétés de l’époque. Comme on ne peut réduire un musulman en servitude, on répond par l’importation d’esclaves venant d’Asie, d’Europe centrale et d’Afrique subsaharienne. Olivier Pétré-Grenouilleau
A la différence de l’islam, le christianisme n’a pas entériné l’esclavage. Mais, comme il ne comportait aucune règle d’organisation sociale, il ne l’a pas non plus interdit. Pourtant, l’idée d’une égalité de tous les hommes en Dieu dont était porteur le christianisme a joué contre l’esclavage, qui disparaît de France avant l’an mil. Cependant, il ressurgit au XVIIe siècle aux Antilles françaises, bien que la législation royale y prescrive l’emploi d’une main-d’oeuvre libre venue de France. L’importation des premiers esclaves noirs, achetés à des Hollandais, se fait illégalement. Jean-Louis Harouel
Si Dieudonné plaçait l’Histoire au-dessus de son fantasme mémoriel, comment l’humoriste franco-camerounais, né dans la banlieue parisienne, pourrait-il se revendiquer « descendant d’esclave »?  Géraldine Faes et Stephen Smith
Concernant le passé, les historiens s’inquiètent pour la vérité historique et pour leur liberté de recherche du fait de l’intrusion du législateur et du juge dans leur domaine. La loi Taubira procède en effet d’une lecture partielle en n’évoquant que «la traite négrière transatlantique ainsi que la traite dans l’océan Indien d’une part, et l’esclavage d’autre part, perpétrés à partir du XVe siècle, aux Amériques et aux Caraïbes, dans l’océan Indien et en Europe». D’une tragédie qui appartient à la longue histoire de l’humanité elle ne retient, sur une séquence courte, que les faits imputables aux seuls Blancs européens, laissant de côté la majorité des victimes de l’esclavage. La terrible traite transatlantique, du XVe au XIXe siècle, ne constitue malheureusement qu’une partie de l’histoire de l’esclavage, qui comprend également la traite arabo-musulmane, laquelle a duré du VIIe au XXe siècle, et la traite intra-africaine, toutes deux plus meurtrières. Le risque de voir cette histoire partielle, donc partiale, devenir histoire officielle a mobilisé les historiens quand l’un des meilleurs spécialistes actuels des traites négrières, Olivier Pétré-Grenouilleau, a été attaqué en justice au nom de la loi Taubira. Parce qu’il rappelait que la quasi-totalité des esclaves africains avaient été razziés non par des Blancs, mais par des négriers africains et que le commerce des esclaves était une routine sur le continent noir bien avant l’arrivée des négriers européens. Il lui était aussi reproché de réfuter l’application du terme de «génocide» aux traites négrières, contredisant ainsi le parallèle implicite entre l’esclavage et l’extermination des juifs qu’évoque l’exposé des motifs de la loi Taubira. (…) Les enjeux du présent expliquent ces relectures du passé. Christiane Taubira déclare sans ambages qu’il ne faut pas trop évoquer la traite négrière arabo-musulmane pour que les «jeunes Arabes» «ne portent pas sur leur dos tout le poids de l’héritage des méfaits des Arabes». Ces logiques communautaires influent aussi sur le projet mémoriel La Route de l’esclave, décidé en 1993 par l’Unesco: Roger Botte, chercheur au Centre d’études africaines du CNRS, constate qu’il privilégie également la traite transatlantique du fait de «la pression des représentants du monde arabe et des Etats africains». Les démarches identitaires d’associations revendiquant le statut de victimes de l’Histoire transforment les débats. Dieudonné et les Indigènes de la République ont ainsi avancé l’expression très problématique de «descendant d’esclave». Empruntée aux Noirs américains – chez qui elle correspond à une réalité historique – cette notion ne peut, avec des nuances, s’appliquer en France qu’aux populations originaires des départements d’outre-mer, mais pas à celles de l’immigration africaine, n’ayant aucun rapport généalogique avec l’esclavage, sinon une éventuelle filiation avec des marchands d’esclaves. (…) Que signifie en effet revendiquer une identité victimaire et invoquer une «souffrance» avec cinq ou six générations de décalage? Est-elle assimilable aux souffrances et traumatismes transmis ou vécus directement, d’une génération à l’autre ou entre contemporains, qu’ont connus juifs, Arméniens, Bosniaques, Rwandais ou victimes du communisme? Et à quoi correspond l’application, à des siècles de distance, de la notion de «crime contre l’humanité», définie en 1945? Là réside le paradoxe le plus gênant, quand l’obsession pour un passé réinventé sert de substitut aux urgences du présent: le concept de crime contre l’humanité est une catégorie pénale dont l’objet est la poursuite de criminels; elle a ainsi permis de pourchasser au bout du monde les derniers criminels nazis. Or les criminels esclavagistes n’appartiennent malheureusement pas tous au passé lointain. Si l’histoire des traites européennes, qui se caractérise par sa relative brièveté et par leur abolition, est terminée depuis plus d’un siècle et demi, l’esclavage s’est prolongé dans de nombreux pays (dont l’Arabie saoudite) jusqu’au milieu du XXe siècle – c’est pour le dénoncer qu’Hergé a publié Coke en stock, en 1958. Et il persiste de nos jours dans certains pays, dont le Soudan, le Niger et la Mauritanie, qui l’a pourtant aboli officiellement en 1960, et de nouveau en 1980. Selon le Haut-Commissariat des Nations unies aux droits de l’homme, il y aurait toujours plusieurs millions d’adultes en esclavage dans le monde et plusieurs associations humanitaires ont aujourd’hui pour objet le rachat d’esclaves: l’une d’elles a récemment racheté, au Soudan, un millier d’esclaves à raison de 50 dollars chacun dans la province de Bar el-Ghazal et, au Niger, les membres de Timidria continuent de lutter contre l’esclavage, malgré son abolition, en 1999 (…). Ces militants anonymes ont le tort de vouloir libérer les victimes oubliées d’une histoire qui écrase encore plutôt que d’instrumentaliser une histoire révolue. Eric Conan
The slaves were not meant to be killed, or even worked to death (though many did die); there was no effort to wipe out a race. Still, as the writer William St Clair points out, in one way the analogy with Nazi death camps works—in “the organised fictions, hypocrisies and self-deceptions that enabled otherwise reasonably decent people to condone, to participate and to benefit.” For most Europeans the existence of the slave trade, and slavery itself, was barely known. In England there was no slavery, so there was no particular reason for most people to face the ugly truth. The means by which sugar lumps arrived on tables in polite society were carefully hidden. (…) Those fine feelings were spared from reality by careful euphemisms. There were no slave-traders; only “adventurers” in the “Africa” or “Guinea” trade. Prints of the gleaming white Cape Coast Castle made it look like a European palace; there was no hint at its real role. Shackles used to string captives together were just “collars”. The “Company of Merchants”, which ran Britain’s slave trade, had on its logo an elephant and a beehive—denoting Africa and America—but nothing about slaves. (…) But there was still a pervasive feeling that, despite all the evasions, those involved in the trade were doing something deeply wrong. In the courtyard of Cape Coast Castle lies the tomb of Philip Quaque, the chaplain to the officers and men of the castle for 42 years in the second half of the 18th century. During all that time he failed to bring a single officer to the Christian rite of Holy Communion. In a letter he reflected that this had nothing to do with his (black) skin-colour, and more to do with a mood of shame: “The only plea they offer is that while they are here acting against Light and Conscience they dare not come to that holy Table.” This sense of guilt was to prove the Achilles heel of the slave trade in Europe. The task the abolitionists set themselves was to expose the reality of the trade to an ignorant public. They thought the moral sense of ordinary people would do the rest, and in part they were right. But lighting the spark of conscience needs brave individuals—like Thomas Clarkson, the moving spirit behind the founding of the Society for Effecting the Abolition of Slavery in 1787. He had been a student at Cambridge University two years before. He entered the university’s Latin essay contest, set by a vice-chancellor who was also an early abolitionist. The title was: Is it lawful to make slaves of others against their will? After two months’ research, he not only won the prize but also dedicated the rest of his long life to the cause of abolition. (…) Even the Quakers, the first abolitionists, were impressed by his zeal. It was essentially the alliance of Clarkson, an Anglican, and the Quakers, with their existing network of preachers and supporters, that made up the abolitionist movement; in an ironic nod to their success, slavers would call their ships the Willing Quaker and the Accomplished Quaker. Clarkson fixed the strategy of the campaign. His first task was to gather evidence about the slave trade, not easy when things were so hidden from public view. He spent long periods in Liverpool and Bristol, trying to gather testimony from the captains or doctors of slave ships, or freed slaves. Almost nobody would talk to him, but over the years small chinks opened in the wall of silence. One who came forward was John Newton, a former slave captain turned Anglican priest. His descriptions of the trade were very influential. Just as important was Clarkson’s gathering of the physical evidence of the slave trade to confirm the oral and written accounts he collected. In Liverpool he picked up “collars”, thumbscrews and a device for force-feeding slaves, which he would display at the hundreds of public lectures that he gave all over Britain, and France too. But Clarkson’s greatest coup was to get hold of a “plate”, or diagram, of the slave-ship Brookes, owned by a Liverpool family of that name, which operated between the Gold Coast and Jamaica. Clarkson and others reworked the plate to show the Brookes loaded with 482 slaves, lined up in rows and squashed together. As always, Clarkson and the abolitionists were strictly accurate; the ship had once carried over 600 slaves in even closer confinement, but they did not want to be accused of exaggeration. In 1789 they published 700 posters of this image and it was a sensation; nobody could now deny the horrors of the “middle passage”, during which many slaves either killed themselves or died of disease, starvation and cruel treatment. It became the abiding image of the campaign, rather like the thin and haunting faces of the newly freed inmates of the Belsen concentration camp. Clarkson also organised what was probably the first ever consumer-goods boycott, of slave-grown sugar, to bring home to ordinary Britons at their tea tables the message that they were paying a dreadful price in human cruelty for indulging a sweet tooth. At one time more than 300,000 people joined the boycott, also designed to hit the profits of the plantation owners. And he inspired the parliamentary movement against slavery, recruiting as spokesman a young Tory, William Wilberforce (see article), who brought successive bills before Parliament to abolish the slave trade until one was passed in 1807. (…) For all the fervour of its opponents, the slave trade would not have collapsed without rebellions by the victims. The most important was in 1791 on St Domingue. Within two months the slaves had taken control of the island, led by the remarkable Toussaint L’Ouverture. His guerrillas saw off the two greatest imperial armies of the day, the French and British; this led to the establishment of the republic of Haiti in 1804 and to the emancipation of about 500,000 slaves. It was clear that European armies would find it hard to contain many more uprisings, a point proved again on the British islands of Grenada and Barbados. Samuel Sharpe’s uprising on Jamaica in 1831 was put down at great cost; the British feared that if slavery continued, they would lose some colonies altogether. So in 1833 slavery was abolished throughout their empire. Britain was not the first to outlaw the slave trade in its territory; the Danes had done so in 1803, the French temporarily in 1794 and several northern American states had also done so before 1807. But as Britain was the big sea power of the day, it alone could enforce abolition throughout the world, as its navy resolutely tried to do for the rest of the 19th century. Other European nations, notably the Portuguese, persisted with the trade into the 1860s. (…) Most European states have tried to face up to the past, but slavery’s legacy is in some ways even more poisonous in places like modern Ghana. A smokescreen still covers the African role in this pernicious trade. It is an awkward fact that the traffic could not have existed without African chiefs and traders. Europeans rarely went far from their forts; slaves were brought to them. Indeed, when the Europeans arrived the slave trade and slavery were already integral parts of local tribal economies. One of the few Ghanaian historians to touch these issues, Akosua Adoma Perbi, writes that “slavery became an important part of the Asante state [the Gold Coast’s most powerful] right from its inception. For three centuries, Asante became the largest slave-trading, slave-owning and slave-dealing state in Ghana.” (…) Most of the slaves sold to Europeans in later centuries were men and women captured in battles between tribes like the Asante and the Acan. Many of the captives were kept as slaves by the victors, where they were treated relatively well and could gain some social standing within their new families. Still, the proliferation of wars between the tribes was, as Ms Perbi writes, “mostly aimed at acquiring slaves for sale to the European companies and individual European merchants”. So integral did the slave trade become to the local chiefs’ welfare that its abolition hit hard. In 1872, long after abolition, Zey, the king of Asante, wrote to the British monarch asking for the slave trade to be renewed. Yaw Bedwa of the University of Ghana says there has been a “general amnesia in Ghana about slavery”. The role of the chiefs is particularly sensitive, as they still play a big role in Ghana. “We don’t discuss slavery,” says Barima Kwame Nkye XII, a paramount chief in the town of Assin Mauso. He defends domestic slavery in the past as a generally benevolent institution, and insists that the chiefs had little to do with the slave trade. (…) Mr Bedwa faces anger from African-Americans who come to Ghana looking for roots, only to be confronted with the role of Africans in the slave trade. Mr Bedwa tells them that Africans who did not suffer from slavery were still victims of colonialism, poverty and disease. But, as in every exploitative system, some had it worse than others. The Economist
La déportation pénale est un procédure pénale consistant à transporter une personne condamnée hors d’un pays vers un bagne. La France a envoyé des condamnés à l’Île du Diable et en Nouvelle-Calédonie. Le Royaume-Uni, des années 1610 jusqu’aux années 1770, a aussi déporté des condamnés vers ses colonies américaines, puis vers l’Australie entre 1788 et 1868. Wikipedia
L’engagisme est à l’origine un concept juridique de l’Ancien Régime français et une réalité sociale, dans les colonies françaises et britanniques, notamment en Amérique du Nord et dans les Antilles, et apparenté au servage1. Dans le cas de la France il fut pratiqué dans le peuplement européen de la Nouvelle-France et des Antilles. À la suite de son abolition pendant la Révolution française, c’est devenu une forme de salariat de travailleurs natifs des colonies (anciens esclaves) ou immigrés provenant principalement d’Afrique, d’Inde, ou du bassin asiatique pour les grands propriétaires terriens des Antilles françaises et des Mascareignes qui ont été confrontés à des problèmes de main-d’œuvre à la suite de l’abolition de l’esclavage en France en 1848. L’indenture est un système équivalent dans le monde anglo-saxon. Afin de fournir une main-d’œuvre qualifiée et à bon marché aux seigneuries de la Nouvelle-France, le Royaume de France fit appel à des engagés. On les appelait alors les « trente-six mois ». Cette méthode de recrutement fut très populaire au XVIIe siècle, puis redevint à la mode peu après le traité d’Utrecht. Le 20 mars 1714, une ordonnance royale ordonna aux capitaines de navires marchands de transporter aux Amériques « depuis trois engagés jusqu’à six suivant le port de leurs vaisseaux ». Une surveillance se faisait tant au départ de la France qu’à l’arrivée à Québec. Une fois la période de trente-six mois écoulée, les engagés étaient libres d’acheter des terres s’ils disposaient d’argent, de devenir censitaires, ou bien de retourner en France. Le nombre d’engagés vers la Nouvelle-France fut toutefois peu élevé, la majorité d’entre eux choisissant les Antilles comme destination. Wikipedia
La déportation pénale est un procédure pénale consistant à transporter une personne condamnée hors d’un pays vers un bagnenote. La France a envoyé des condamnés à l’Île du Diable et en Nouvelle-Calédonie. Le Royaume-Uni, des années 1610 jusqu’aux années 1770, a aussi déporté des condamnés vers ses colonies américaines, puis vers l’Australie entre 1788 et 1868. Wikipedia
From the early 1600s until the American Revolution of 1776, the British colonies in North America received transported British criminals. In the 17th century transportation was carried out at the expense of the convicts or the shipowners. The Transportation Act 1717 allowed courts to sentence convicts to seven years’ transportation to America. In 1720, an extension authorised payments by the Crown to merchants contracted to take the convicts to America. The Transportation Act made returning from transportation a capital offence. The number of convicts transported to North America is not verified – John Dunmore Lang has estimated 50,000, and Thomas Keneally has proposed 120,000. Maryland received a larger felon quota than any other province. Many prisoners were taken in battle from Ireland or Scotland and sold into indentured servitude, usually for a number of years. The American Revolution brought transportation to an end. The remaining British colonies in what is now Canada were close to the new United States of America, thus prisoners sent there might have become hostile to British authorities. British gaols became overcrowded, and dilapidated ships moored in various ports were pressed into service as floating gaols known as « hulks ». An experiment in transporting convicted prisoners to West Africa proved unsuccessful. As a result, the British Government decided to look elsewhere. In 1787, the « First Fleet » of convict ships departed from England to establish the first British settlement in Australia, as a penal colony. The fleet arrived at Port Jackson (Sydney) on 26 January 1788, a date now celebrated as Australia Day. Wikipedia
In 1620, four small children, under the age of eight, were brought to New England shores as indentured servants to work as planters in Virginia. Ellen More was only eight; Jasper was seven, Richard, six, and Mary was four years old. The siblings were listed as servants. Three of the More children died during the bitter cold, one winter onboard the Mayflower anchored in the harbor, and six-year old Richard More was the only survivor of the four siblings. (…) The story of how these four children came to be on the Mayflower is heartbreaking. Their father purposely disposed of the children by banishing them to work the fields of Virginia. London was a microcosm of Britain’s social ills, decrepit laws, and those left in the wake of the pursuit of 17th century expansionism. The gentrified landowners paid laborers a pittance, and the death and neglect of unwanted children was rampant. Beggar waifs blighted the streets, and to rid cities of crime, authorities rounded up little children and condemned them to labor in the colonies. But the four More children aboard the Mayflower were not poor street waifs, as their families were wealthy landowners. (…) When Samuel More discovered that wife, Katherine, had committed adultery with tenant Jacob Blaskeway, he denied the four children were his kin, disowning them by claiming a strong likeness to the putative father, Jacob. Katherine admitted her illegal liaison, and confirmed they were Jacob’s children. Enraged, Samuel approached Lord Zouche, head of Privy Council, and an investor in the Virginia Company in America. They devised a plan for the disposal of the four ‘bastard’ children in retaliation against his wife’s betrayal. Samuel More also cut the children from all inheritance, and denied their very existence. (…) The More children were put in the care of four families as indentured servants aboard the vessel. Alive magazine
A Place Called Freedom is a work of historical fiction by Ken Follett. Set in 1767, it follows the adventures of an idealistic young coal miner from Scotland who believes there must be more to life than working down the pit. The miner, Mack McAsh, eventually runs away in order to find work and a new life in London. Eventually McAsh becomes a leader amongst the working classes of the city and becomes a target for those vested interest groups who do not share his point of view. McAsh is framed for a crime he did not commit and sent to serve seven years hard labour in the Colony of Virginia where he is forced to find a new life. The novel initially deals with subject of the Payment of Arles, a form of serfdom for miners in the 18th century which meant that once a miner started work in a coal mine he was bound to the mine for the rest of his life. It was a custom for the master or landowner of the mine to give a gift to parents at the time of a child’s baptism. The gift would then bind the child to work alongside the parents when they came of age. (…) After being caught in the middle of a riot, McAsh is captured and sentenced to transportation to America, a form of punishment which was often seen as an effective alternative to the death penalty during that period. Once arriving in the Colony of Virginia, McAsh is made to work as a field hand before escaping to the West. Wikipedia
Livar told HuffPost that Great Hearts staff invited his family and other concerned parents to a meeting on Thursday to discuss the matter, and that Manu was “commended for his action of bringing this to light and was even told he was ‘very brave.’” However, he noted that his son has been “attacked by many at his school” for supposedly harming its reputation. Livar, who said he and his family are Mexican-American and identify as Chicano, chalked the whole ordeal up to a lack of diversity at the school among the student body and staff. He added that he sees what happened as a sign of problems stemming beyond his son’s school. “These issues are not isolated to one school or one book,” Livar said. “These issues are systemic and continue up the chain all the way to the Texas School Board of Education”. Huffington Post
Relations between the rulers and the working class in the 18th century were so appalling that, even if you’re a modern conservative, you have to sympathise with the rebels. The main character, Mack McAsh, is a coal miner. At that time, coal miners were slaves in Scotland. Mack escapes to London and ends up in America. I set out to write an adventure story about a man coming from a very narrow environment, (a mining village in Scotland), and crossing the world to become a pioneer in America. The prologue, about finding an iron collar in a twentieth-century garden, is quite unusual and people often ask me if it’s true. It’s not. Many 18th century novels pretended to be real and the prologue uses the same literary device. It gives the reader a sense of how much time has elapsed since the historical period of the story. People who know me realise I couldn’t possibly have found a collar in a flower bed because I’ve never done any gardening in my life. I used a similar device at the end of The Man from St Petersburg, when I said that Charlotte is still alive and you can go see her. The idea is to remind the reader that someone who was a young woman in 1914 might still be alive today. Ken Follett
Defoe bluntly stated that the white servant was a slave. He was not. The servant’s loss of liberty was of limited duration, the Negro was [a] slave for life. The servant’s status could not descend to his offspring, Negro children took the status of the mother. The master at no time had absolute control over the person and liberty of his servant as he had over his slave. The servant had rights, limited but recognised by law and inserted into a contract. He enjoyed, for instance, a limited right to property. In actual law the conception of the servant as a piece of property never went beyond that of personal estate and never reached the stage of a chattel or real estate. The laws in the colonies maintained this rigid distinction and visited co-habitation between the races with severe penalties. The servant could aspire, at the end of his term, to a plot of land, though, as Wertenbaker points out for Virginia, it was not a legal right, and conditions varied from colony to colony. The serf in Europe could therefore hope for an early freedom in America which villeinage could not afford. The freed servants became small yeoman farmers, settled in the back country, a democratic force in a society of large aristocratic plantation owners, and were pioneers in westward expansion. Eric Williams (Capitalism and Slavery, 1944)
Unlike the slave the indentured servant was bound to labor for his master merely for the period of time expressly stated in his contract or, in the absence of a formal contract, as laid down by custom or statute. At the expiration of his service he was a free man. Richard B. Morris (Government and Labor in Early America, 1946)
Contemporary slavery is the complete control of a person, for economic exploitation, by violence, or the threat of violence. Kevin Bales
“Slavery (…) the “peculiar institution” is one of humanity’s oldest. It has, however, evolved and manifested itself quite distinctly in different periods of history. In contrast to historical views of slavery that are associated with Chattel Slavery, numerous forms fall under the umbrella term of contemporary slavery. The United Nations (U.N.) Working Group recognizes such radically new forms as: child labor, children in conflict, trafficking in persons, sexual exploitation, and the sale of children. The International Labor Office (ILO) approaches the topic through the lens of forced labor. The ILO recognizes slavery and abductions, compulsory participation in public works projects, forced labor in agriculture, domestic workers, bonded labor, forced labor imposed by the military, forced labor in the trafficking of persons, as well as some aspects of prison labor and rehabilitation through work. (…) Economic conditions are decisive in the formation of slavery. Chattel slavery emerged as a disturbing manifestation of a push for labor-intensive goods created in the new world. Slaves were seen as property—as a form of investment. The ensuing ownership created a myriad of costs for slave traders and owners. These costs included cargo, shipment, and insurance during delivery, as well as the costs of maintaining the investment (food, medical treatment, and clothing) on behalf of the slave owner. Nearly forty million Africans lost their lives due to horrific conditions on slaving vessels (Anti-Slavery International 2005). Massive slave insurrections significantly added to the costs nations incurred in enforcing the trade. These economic realities, coupled with strong domestic opposition, eventually led slave traders and politicians in Great Britain to re-evaluate the desirability of the trade. This ultimately led to slavery’s abolition in Great Britain and in subsequent countries around the world. A new set of economic forces arose from the ashes of the Trans-Atlantic trade, as slave traders demonstrated their ability to adapt to a changing environment. During the post-abolition era, the colonial holdings of the world’s imperial powers began to display an evolution towards slave-like practices. Forced labor by the state, debt bondage, and prison labor emerged to take the place of chattel slavery. These forms were markedly different for exactly what they lacked—namely, the immense costs and direct legal involvement in a trade that had been officially abolished. Imperial powers found these advantages to be economically and socially attractive. However, two devastating wars and the era of decolonization all but ended this period by the 1970s. (…) Massive inequality and poverty have set the stage for the most profitable form of slave trading ever seen. Slaves today are, in purely economic terms, short term, low-capital investments with incredibly high rates of return. For example, slaves in the U.S. Antebellum South cost, in real terms, around $40,000; today, a slave goes for around $90 (…). This is due to the enormous supply of slaves on the market today. In contrast to chattel slavery, ownership is now officially avoided. However, illegitimate contracts are used to keep victims in subjugation. Although a dizzying array of slave-like practices are recognized, the dominating form of slavery today is debt bondage. It is estimated that a staggering fifteen million of the world’s slaves can be found in India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Bangladesh combined (…)  The economic power wielded by the modern age slave holder is due to the seemingly unlimited supply of slaves in the world. According to the U.N., half of the world’s six and a half billion people survive on less than two dollars per day. It is from this mass of desperately poor people that the world’s slaves are culled. Never in history has there b een a segment of society that is as vulnerable as today’s poor. (…) As opposed to the later eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, when slavery was confined to colonies and peripheral territorial holdings, contemporary slavery has permeated countries at every level of development in the global economy. Conservative estimates put the number of modern slaves alive today at 27 million (…). Some human rights organizations have the number as high as 200 million (…). This is more than all of the slaves who were captured and forced into slavery during the entirety of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade. Justin Guay
Popular among racists, white supremacists, neo-Nazis, white nationalists and neo-confederate groups, the “Irish slave” trope is often accompanied by statements to the effect of, “Our ancestors suffered and we got over it, why can’t you?” According to Liam Hogan — a librarian and scholar who has tracked the myth — references to these “Irish slaves” are used to derail conversations about racism and inequity. “The principle aim of this propaganda, which aligns with that of the international far-right, is to empty the history of the transatlantic slave trade of its racial element,” says Hogan. The meme has become increasingly visible since 2013. Its trajectory has paralleled the rise of Black Lives Matter and has even used that movement’s language with graphics, t-shirts and Facebook groups that proclaim, “Irish Lives Matter.” (…) Those who traffic in this lie minimize and ignore the realities that made slavery distinct from other forms of servitude in the British colonies. African slaves were considered property; Irish indentured servants were not. And though they faced inhumane working conditions, Irish indentured servants could typically decide if they wanted to enter into their labor contracts. Unlike the Africans forced to come to the US as slaves, the servitude of Irish people in the US did not span their entire lifetimes, and did not bind their children to a life of servitude. The Irish-as-slaves meme has a curious anatomy that Hogan has traced back to self-published books, family genealogy blogs and white supremacist news sites. He attributes much of the misinformation behind the meme to an article published by the Centre for Research on Globalization, a Canadian-based organization that touts its focus on education and humanitarianism. (…) The Global Research article is illustrated by the cover of a book, “White Cargo: The Forgotten History of Britain’s White Slaves in America,” which was published by NYU Press in 2008. The book’s cover, dramatically illustrated with two white fists bound by rope manacles, often appears alongside articles that perpetuate the “Irish slave” myth. The authors of the book are British filmmakers Don Jordan and Michael Walsh, who argue that slavery is more a feeling than a system. “Slavery,” they claim, “is not defined by time but by the experience of the subject.” Scholars discredit this assessment. In a review in “The Historian,” Dr. Dixie Ray Haggard says the book uses sound primary sources to draw conclusions that are plagued by “fatal flaws.” The most egregious, he writes, is that it “deliberately conflates indentured servitude with slavery. … Rather than explore the complexity of labor and social relations in colonial America and increase our understanding of these institutions, these authors chose to oversimplify and confuse.” Still, the book was reviewed favorably in mainstream news outlets including The New York Times, Publishers Weekly and The New York Review of Books. Co-author Walsh qualified his claims in an interview with NPR that “We’re not saying the Whites ever suffered quite as much as the worst treated Blacks.” Yet the book helped popularize the idea that Irish indentured servants had it just as bad, if not worse, than African slaves. This “Irish slave” narrative is the latest in a long history of Irish Americans affirming their own group identity at the expense of black people. In his book, “How the Irish Became White,” Noel Ignatiev shows how in 19th century America, when racial identities had as much to do with national origin as skin color, Irish immigrants strove to be socially classed as white. In order to achieve this status and the privileges that came with it, they routinely and deliberately differentiated themselves from black people by — at times violently — forcing them into an even lower ranking in the American social order. They sought to minimize the horrors of slavery then too. Irish workers in antebellum America self-identified as “wage slaves,” claiming they had it far worse than actual slaves because they weren’t entitled to “benefits” like the material comfort and the assurance of work they said slaves enjoyed. Decades later in 1921, W.E.B. Du Bois wrote that Irish anti-blackness has been expressed so “continuously and emphatically” that “there can be no doubt of the hostility of a large proportion of Irish Americans toward Negroes.” PRI
High school American history classes present indentured servitude as a benignly paternalistic system whereby colonial immigrants spent a few years working off their passage and went on to better things. Not so, this impassioned history argues: the indentured servitude of whites was comparable in most respects to the slavery endured by blacks. Voluntary indentures arriving in colonial America from Britain were sold on the block, subjected to backbreaking work on plantations, poorly fed and clothed, savagely punished for any disobedience, forbidden to marry without their master’s permission, and whipped and branded for running away. Nor were indentures always voluntary: tens of thousands of convicts, beggars, homeless children and other undesirable Britons were transported to America against their will. Given the hideous mortality rates, the authors argue, indentured contracts often amounted to a life sentence at hard labor—some convicts asked to be hanged rather than be sent to Virginia. The authors, both television documentarians, don’t attempt a systematic survey of the subject, and their episodic narrative often loses its way in colorful but extraneous digressions. Still, their exposé of unfree labor in the British colonies paints an arresting portrait of early America as gulag. Publishers weekly
In my view the most damning feature of this book it that it does not inform the reader in a coherent or timely manner what the profound differences are between racialised chattel slavery and indentured servitude or penal servitude. I believe that this was purposefully done to gird support for the book’s thesis that “white slavery” preceded “black slavery” in Colonial America. Their narrative of a supposed transition from a system of “white slavery” to black slavery is not supported by the historical evidence and this narrative’s inherent false equivalence is as ahistorical as it is troubling. The transition that occurred was from white indentured servitude to black chattel slavery. It is worth noting that the transition is related to which bonded labour system dominated, not which preceded the other, for Africans were held in lifetime bondage in Anglo America from the very beginning and indentured servitude was reintroduced in the British West Indies after the abolition of slavery in the 1830s. To be sure, these institutions were interrelated; they existed on the same continuum of unfreedom and labour exploitation in colonial realms. But they are not interchangeable and they cannot be equated or conflated without doing enormous damage to the historical record. (…) The authors of White Cargo try to get around this by concluding that one should refer to indentured servants in Colonial America (both voluntary and involuntary) as “white slaves” by (1) redefining slavery in this context as a “feeling” and not a socio-legal status and (2) arguing that servants should be called “slaves” because Daniel Defoe said so. (…) as Williams clarified over seventy years ago, indentured servitude was never racialised, was mostly voluntary and always time-limited. Colonial Slavery in the Early Modern Atlantic world was perpetual, hereditary and was justified and sustained by anti-black racism. (…) Frustratingly the authors of White Cargo are all too aware of the fundamental differences between slavery and servitude. A closer review reveals that these differences are buried in an erratic fashion throughout the book but never explained in any detail. It must be immensely confusing for any reader (especially those unfamiliar with the issues) to follow what is going on when after approximately one hundred pages of conflation the authors redraw their definitions by explaining that “one of the fundamental differences drawn between white indentured servitude and black slavery [is that black slavery means forever].” While it is not until page 176 that they admit that there was no transition from “white slavery” to black slavery as instead they note that there was a “shift from time-limited servitude of Englishmen to the lifetime slavery of Africans” which of course contradicts the book’s central thesis. These inconsistencies are present at various points throughout the text. To put it bluntly, White Cargo’s simplistic “servants were slaves, convicts were slaves and slaves were slaves” rationale is historically and semantically insupportable. Such reductionism and lack of adequate qualification or nuance collapses the distinctions between these different forms of bondage by default. (…) This confusion is also reflected in some of the uncritical media coverage the book received when it was first published. NPR labelled their promotional piece “America’s First Slaves: Whites” and then concurred with the authors that “the slavery of Europeans was a prelude to the mass slavery of Africans in the Americas.” NPR thus used White Cargo to present this false equivalence of slavery and servitude to their audience as being historically legitimate, yet by the second sentence they refer to it as “white indentured servitude.” Liam Hogan
In April 1775, two days after the American War of Independence began, a notice appeared in the Virginia Gazette offering rewards for the return of 10 runaways. Two were « Negro slaves », but the other eight were white servants, including Thomas Pearce, a 20-year-old Bristol joiner, and William Webster, a middle-aged Scottish brick-maker. Whether they were ever found remains a mystery; almost nothing is known about them but their names. But their irate master was to become very famous indeed, for the man pursuing his absconding servants was called George Washington. Pearce and Webster were indentured servants, the kind of people often ignored in patriotic accounts of colonial America. In the 17th and 18th centuries, tens of thousands of men, women and children lived as ill-paid, ill-treated chattels, bound in servitude to their colonial masters. It is a sobering illustration of human gullibility that, in return for vague promises of a better life, men would sign away their lives for 10 years or more. Once in the New World, they were effectively items of property to be treated as their masters saw fit. Brutal corporal punishment was ubiquitous: every Virginia settlement had its own whipping post. One man was publicly scourged for four days with his ears nailed to the post. He had been flirting with a servant girl. Briskly written by Don Jordan and Michael Walsh, a pair of television documentary producers, White Cargo is harrowing reading. For while thousands of servants signed up for the colonies of their own will, thousands more were shipped across by force. We associate transportation with Australia but, by the time of independence, perhaps one in 100 Americans was a convict. English officials were open in their determination to send the « scum » of their booming cities to the colonies. During the Georgian era they exiled 1,000 prisoners across the Atlantic every year. Some of these people were hardened criminals, but not all. Hundreds of girls sent over in the 1620s were probably child prostitutes dragged off the London streets. James I ordered that 100 « rowdy youths » from Newmarket be shipped across to Virginia; in fact, they were just exuberant local lads whose horseplay had annoyed the king. Most shocking of all, thousands of poor London children were rounded up by the constables and thrown on to the nearest ship. Urchins as young as five were shipped to America, where they spent most of their lives in backbreaking service. Few lived long enough to reach adulthood. And yet this horrifying enterprise had some impressive advocates. « It shall sweep your streets, and wash your doors, from idle persons, and the children of idle persons, » declared the poet John Donne. Yet although Jordan and Walsh present their material in a breezy fashion, this is an unsatisfying book. (…) The book is subtitled and marketed as the « forgotten history of Britain’s white slaves in America ». Yet as the authors admit, indentured servants were not slaves. It is true that they were dreadfully treated; indeed, Barbados planters often treated their slaves better than their servants, because the former were so vital to their economic success. The authors are right to remind us that African slavery was one form of bondage among many, rather than a unique and unprecedented condition. All the same, it was almost always much better to be a European servant than an African slave. Not only were servants transported in better conditions, they could also hope to be free men, if they survived their term of service. Above all, they were white, which meant that they were automatically different from the West African slaves. As the servants would have pointed out, the racial codes of the American colonies were a lot more than window-dressing. Dominic Sandbrook 

Attention: un esclavage peut en cacher un autre !

En ces temps étranges …

Où entre concurrence victimaire et mimétisme ambiant, il faut à nouveau pour réussir son suicide le djihadiser et entrainer avec soi le maximum de victimes …

Et en ce toujours plus étrange Occident …

Dont les racines sont issues, fait unique dans l’Histoire humaine, d’une culture se revendiquant fille d’esclaves affranchis

Où entre esclavage sexuel et extortion de fonds, un mouvement sectaire peut prospérer, en plein coeur des Etats-Unis et dans la plus grande indifférence, pendant plus de 20 ans …

Mais où des enseignants peuvent se voir mis à pied pour avoir voulu faire réfléchir leurs élèves aux éventuels bénéfices de l’esclavage y compris pour ses victimes …

Retour en cette veille de commémoration de l’abolition, 15 ans après la Grande-Bretagne, de l’esclavage en France …

Où faisant l’impasse à l’instar de l’infâme loi Taubira sur les traites intra-africaine et arabe beaucoup plus importantes et prolongées dans le temps …

L’on va encore ne nous parler que de la seule traite transatlantique (14% du total quand même pour la seule partie française parquée discrètement dans ses DOMTOM, soit   1, 6 million  vs. 500 000 pour les Etats-Unis) …

Sur ces écrivains et journalistes récemment mis au pilori eux aussi pour avoir qualifié d’esclavage (certes temporaire) les conditions de travail de certains mineurs de l’Europe de la Révolution industrielle …

Ou, censés nettoyer Londres ou Paris de leurs « classes dangereuses » (repris de justice mais aussi filles ou enfants de rue – Mayflower compris),  d’ « engagés » et de « déportés pénaux » des Amériques …

Alors que contrairement à ce que nous présente la – compréhensible et nécessaire – propagande anti-esclavagiste, on ne voit pas bien l’intérêt de l’interminable série de sévices que leur vie était censée alors être quand les historiens nous apprennent qu’ils pouvaient représenter  pour leurs propriétaires un investissement et un capital se chiffrant en dizaines de milliers de nos dollars actuels …

Et que les instances mêmes d’organisme internationaux comme les Nations unies parlent allégrement aujourd’hui d’esclavage moderne pour des victimes qui ne présentent pourtant pas la caractéristique jusqu’ici déclarée nécessaire pour le faire de transmission héréditaire de leur condition …

Mais dont on peut effectivement imaginer les conditions de vie quand on sait qu’entre l’augmentation exponentielle de leur nombre et la réduction drastique de leur coût de transport, la valeur a été ramenée à quelque 90 dollars …

The forgotten history of Britain’s white slaves

Dominic Sandbrook reviews White Cargo: the Forgotten History of Britain’s White Slaves in America by Don Jordan and Michael Walsh

The Daily Telegraph

03 May 2007

In April 1775, two days after the American War of Independence began, a notice appeared in the Virginia Gazette offering rewards for the return of 10 runaways. Two were « Negro slaves », but the other eight were white servants, including Thomas Pearce, a 20-year-old Bristol joiner, and William Webster, a middle-aged Scottish brick-maker. Whether they were ever found remains a mystery; almost nothing is known about them but their names. But their irate master was to become very famous indeed, for the man pursuing his absconding servants was called George Washington.Pearce and Webster were indentured servants, the kind of people often ignored in patriotic accounts of colonial America. In the 17th and 18th centuries, tens of thousands of men, women and children lived as ill-paid, ill-treated chattels, bound in servitude to their colonial masters. It is a sobering illustration of human gullibility that, in return for vague promises of a better life, men would sign away their lives for 10 years or more. Once in the New World, they were effectively items of property to be treated as their masters saw fit. Brutal corporal punishment was ubiquitous: every Virginia settlement had its own whipping post. One man was publicly scourged for four days with his ears nailed to the post. He had been flirting with a servant girl.Briskly written by Don Jordan and Michael Walsh, a pair of television documentary producers, White Cargo is harrowing reading. For while thousands of servants signed up for the colonies of their own will, thousands more were shipped across by force. We associate transportation with Australia but, by the time of independence, perhaps one in 100 Americans was a convict. English officials were open in their determination to send the « scum » of their booming cities to the colonies. During the Georgian era they exiled 1,000 prisoners across the Atlantic every year.Some of these people were hardened criminals, but not all. Hundreds of girls sent over in the 1620s were probably child prostitutes dragged off the London streets. James I ordered that 100 « rowdy youths » from Newmarket be shipped across to Virginia; in fact, they were just exuberant local lads whose horseplay had annoyed the king.Most shocking of all, thousands of poor London children were rounded up by the constables and thrown on to the nearest ship. Urchins as young as five were shipped to America, where they spent most of their lives in backbreaking service. Few lived long enough to reach adulthood. And yet this horrifying enterprise had some impressive advocates. « It shall sweep your streets, and wash your doors, from idle persons, and the children of idle persons, » declared the poet John Donne.Yet although Jordan and Walsh present their material in a breezy fashion, this is an unsatisfying book. For one thing, the narrative feels very disjointed, not least because chapters of six pages or fewer are too short for a work of this kind. There are some splendid anecdotes, but they never knit into a coherent story or argument. It is telling that the book ends with a perfunctory two-paragraph conclusion that vaguely wonders whether the « present-day American psyche » owes something to « the harsh conditions of those early settlements », but doesn’t really provide an answer.A more serious problem is the whole business of slavery. The book is subtitled and marketed as the « forgotten history of Britain’s white slaves in America ». Yet as the authors admit, indentured servants were not slaves. It is true that they were dreadfully treated; indeed, Barbados planters often treated their slaves better than their servants, because the former were so vital to their economic success. The authors are right to remind us that African slavery was one form of bondage among many, rather than a unique and unprecedented condition.All the same, it was almost always much better to be a European servant than an African slave. Not only were servants transported in better conditions, they could also hope to be free men, if they survived their term of service. Above all, they were white, which meant that they were automatically different from the West African slaves. As the servants would have pointed out, the racial codes of the American colonies were a lot more than window-dressing. Calling them slaves might be a marketing ploy, but it stretches the meaning of slavery beyond breaking point.

Voir aussi:

The curious origins of the ‘Irish slaves’ myth

PRI’s The World

March 17, 2017

Natasha Varner

Irish Americans were slaves once too — or so a historically inaccurate and dangerously misleading internet meme would have you believe.
The meme comes in many varieties but the basic formula is this: old photos, paintings and engravings from all over the world are combined with text suggesting they are historic images of forgotten “Irish slaves.”

The myth underlying the meme holds that the Irish — not Africans — were the first American slaves. It rests on the idea that 17th century American indentured servitude was essentially an extension of the transatlantic slave trade.

Popular among racists, white supremacists, neo-Nazis, white nationalists and neo-confederate groups, the “Irish slave” trope is often accompanied by statements to the effect of, “Our ancestors suffered and we got over it, why can’t you?” According to Liam Hogan — a librarian and scholar who has tracked the myth — references to these “Irish slaves” are used to derail conversations about racism and inequity.

“The principle aim of this propaganda, which aligns with that of the international far-right, is to empty the history of the transatlantic slave trade of its racial element,” says Hogan.

The meme has become increasingly visible since 2013. Its trajectory has paralleled the rise of Black Lives Matter and has even used that movement’s language with graphics, t-shirts and Facebook groups that proclaim, “Irish Lives Matter.”

In a six-part series on Medium, Hogan deconstructs the images and claims that have fueled the meme. That picture of “Irish slave” children? That’s actually a photo of young coal mine workers in Pennsylvania in 1911. The one of the “Irish” man being beaten to death in front of a crowd in the 1800s? That’s really a black man tied to a whipping post and being tortured in the 1920s.While there is a growing awareness that these arguments are based on misinformation, the fiction is now seen by many as fact thanks to a strange web of mutually reinforcing lies. The lies have also taken on a life beyond the internet.

At a Confederate flag rally in Mississippi in July 2015 one protester told a reporter, “There were more white Irish slaves then there were blacks. And the Irish slaves were treated a lot worse than the black slaves.”

Those who traffic in this lie minimize and ignore the realities that made slavery distinct from other forms of servitude in the British colonies. African slaves were considered property; Irish indentured servants were not. And though they faced inhumane working conditions, Irish indentured servants could typically decide if they wanted to enter into their labor contracts. Unlike the Africans forced to come to the US as slaves, the servitude of Irish people in the US did not span their entire lifetimes, and did not bind their children to a life of servitude.

The Irish-as-slaves meme has a curious anatomy that Hogan has traced back to self-published books, family genealogy blogs and white supremacist news sites. He attributes much of the misinformation behind the meme to an article published by the Centre for Research on Globalization, a Canadian-based organization that touts its focus on education and humanitarianism. Hogan says that their frequently referenced 2008 article, “The Irish Slave Trade — The Forgotten ‘White’ Slaves,” has an outsized impact but “does not contain a single historically accurate claim or sentence.”

Even so, the article has been cited by mainstream news sites like Scientific American, Irish Examiner and Irish Central. In response, more than 80 scholars and supporters have signed an open letter debunking the Global Research article and asking the media to stop their practice of uncritically citing it and related sources. Scientific American responded by heavily revising their story on the topic and the Irish Examiner removed theirs altogether. But Irish Central has made no such revisions and did not respond to a request to comment for this story.

Screenshots of an article on GlobalResearch.ca, as archived by the Internet Archive on January 31, 2017 and March 3, 2017, after PRI reached out to them for comment on the article.
The editor of Global Research, Michel Chossudovsky, defends their decision to keep the story on their website. He wrote in an email that it was, “originally published by OpEd News, we do not necessarily endorse it, we have also published critiques of that article by several historians with a view to promoting debate.”

Shortly after he replied to PRI’s questions, the article was updated with a lengthy editorial note and links to the articles that “promote debate” on the basis of long-since discredited claims.

The Global Research article is illustrated by the cover of a book, “White Cargo: The Forgotten History of Britain’s White Slaves in America,” which was published by NYU Press in 2008. The book’s cover, dramatically illustrated with two white fists bound by rope manacles, often appears alongside articles that perpetuate the “Irish slave” myth.

The authors of the book are British filmmakers Don Jordan and Michael Walsh, who argue that slavery is more a feeling than a system. “Slavery,” they claim, “is not defined by time but by the experience of the subject.”

Scholars discredit this assessment. In a review in “The Historian,” Dr. Dixie Ray Haggard says the book uses sound primary sources to draw conclusions that are plagued by “fatal flaws.” The most egregious, he writes, is that it “deliberately conflates indentured servitude with slavery. … Rather than explore the complexity of labor and social relations in colonial America and increase our understanding of these institutions, these authors chose to oversimplify and confuse.”

Still, the book was reviewed favorably in mainstream news outlets including The New York Times, Publishers Weekly and The New York Review of Books. Co-author Walsh qualified his claims in an interview with NPR that “We’re not saying the Whites ever suffered quite as much as the worst treated Blacks.” Yet the book helped popularize the idea that Irish indentured servants had it just as bad, if not worse, than African slaves.

This “Irish slave” narrative is the latest in a long history of Irish Americans affirming their own group identity at the expense of black people. In his book, “How the Irish Became White,” Noel Ignatiev shows how in 19th century America, when racial identities had as much to do with national origin as skin color, Irish immigrants strove to be socially classed as white. In order to achieve this status and the privileges that came with it, they routinely and deliberately differentiated themselves from black people by — at times violently — forcing them into an even lower ranking in the American social order.

They sought to minimize the horrors of slavery then too. Irish workers in antebellum America self-identified as “wage slaves,” claiming they had it far worse than actual slaves because they weren’t entitled to “benefits” like the material comfort and the assurance of work they said slaves enjoyed.

Decades later in 1921, W.E.B. Du Bois wrote that Irish anti-blackness has been expressed so “continuously and emphatically” that “there can be no doubt of the hostility of a large proportion of Irish Americans toward Negroes.”

Now, as the “Irish slave” myth festers online and beyond, there is no visibly Irish American movement to answer it. There is no Irish American equivalent to Asians for Black Lives. Irish Americans participate in movements for the rights of African Americans, but they do not announce their heritage as loudly as do proponents of the “Irish slave” myth.

Leaders within the Catholic church, which has historically served as the moral compass for many Irish Americans, are beginning to grapple with this legacy of anti-blackness. Dr. Kevin Considine, professor of theology at Calumet College of St. Joseph, called for direct responses to “implicit, insidious racism” in an essay for US Catholic last summer.

“Do black lives matter to white Catholics? If so, we need to do more than say the right words,” he wrote.

Voir également:

White Cargo: The Forgotten History of Britain’s White Slaves in America by Don Jordan and Michael Walsh was published by the New York University Press in 2007. It is a work of popular history authored by a filmmaker and a journalist about what they claim is the “forgotten history” of unfree European labour in Colonial America, or as the authors now call them, “white slaves”. The blurb of the book asserts without qualification that white indentured servants were “chattels”, that white convicts were sold like “livestock” and that this history of “white slavery” has been “submerged under the overwhelming memory of black slavery.” The introduction goes on to state that “white servants were the first slaves in America” and that “today, tens of millions of white Americans are descended from such chattels.” Jordan and Walsh also claim that the brutalities associated with black slavery alone were perpetuated on whites throughout British rule.”To put it mildly these are simplistic, decontextualised and historically problematic assertions. Despite the author’s haphazard disclaimers to the contrary, their argument unavoidably draws a false equivalence between colonial slavery and colonial servitude. The book’s sensationalist and oversimplified approach to this complex topic means that this attempt at a relative comparison becomes an absolute equivalence in a general discussion. Since its publication ten years ago White Cargo has helped popularise the reductive fallacy that “slavery was slavery” in the history of British America. It has thus aided the growth of a deep misunderstanding and confusion about this history in wider society and has been seized upon at the fringes by White Nationalists and Neo-Confederates as “evidence” in their attempts to legitimate their racist worldview.

Academic criticism points towards a “Fatal Flaw”

I do not doubt that the authors’ hearts were in the right place and I’m convinced that White Cargo had the potential to be an important and accessible work about the broad history of unfree labour in British America and the exploitation of the poor and the vulnerable. Alas the fundamentally misguided decision to conflate the plight of its subjects with the history of racialised chattel slavery, while no doubt helping to garner greater media attention and sales, has critically damaged the book’s import. The American historian Dr. Dixie Ray Haggard noted this “fatal flaw” when he reviewed the book for The Historian journal in 2011 and he concluded how“This book deliberately conflates indentured servitude with slavery. The authors use a general definition of slavery, rather than an academic one, to prove their point that indentured servants were in essence slaves because of the way they were treated. They fail to acknowledge, or maybe understand, that each institution, slavery and indentured servitude, had its own purpose and position within the colonial economy and society.”Haggard also noted the book’s poor use of modern literature and scholarship and that the authors predominantly leaned on secondary sources, of which many were published in the mid-twentieth century.Prof Jerome Handler and Dr Matthew Reilly, scholars of the history of slavery in Barbados, singled out White Cargo in a recent academic article contesting the growing narrative of “white slavery” in the Caribbean. They argued that White Cargo has been “influential amongst transatlantic audiences in its central thesis” that slavery in British America was imposed “first for whites, then for blacks.” Handler and Reilly assessed that the book’s strategy to simplistically refer to white servants as slaves “deflects the experiences of millions of persons of African birth or descent.”Likewise the economic historian of slavery Dr. Stephen Mullen criticised the book’s “sensationalist interpretations” and he cited the American historian Michael Guasco who “recently suggested the text should be read in ‘conjunction with more analytical and thoroughly contextualised works’ — a diplomatic way of urging caution when considering the authors’ conclusions.” Mullen observed that some of the book’s sources were questionable, pointing out that the section about the transportation of Scottish Jacobites to the Americas in the 1700s relied almost exclusively on John Prebble’s “pseudo-historiographical victimology” rather than objective history. Correspondingly White Cargo lists Sean O’Callaghan’s pseudo-history To Hell or Barbados (2000) in its bibliography. I critiqued this work and found that O’Callaghan had jumbled history and fantasy together to help laminate a perfect victimology that equated indentured servitude with chattel slavery. Prof Don Akenson recently described O’Callaghan’s work as “an end-of-the-pier-act that is just a shade short of being hate literature” while Handler and Reilly delineated how To Hell or Barbados is

“…replete with historical inaccuracies, the frequent extension of documented information on enslaved Africans to all indentured servants without explanation or justification, distorted embellishments of historical incidents, reliance on questionable sources, and unsupported statements of alleged historical facts…”

British historian Dr. Dominic Sandbrook reviewedWhite Cargo for the Daily Telegraph and found it “unsatisfying” as it was built on “disjointed narratives” and anecdotes. He felt that its most “serious problem” was its decontextualisation of the term ‘slavery’ for polemical purposes. He concluded that “calling them slaves might be a marketing ploy, but it stretches the meaning of slavery beyond breaking point.”Although not referring to White Cargo directly, the Scottish historian Sir T.M. Devine also dealt with this increasingly popular conflation of servitude and slavery in the very first page of his introduction to Scotland’s Slavery Past: The Caribbean Connection (2015)

“Those modern skeptics who consider…the indentured white servants in the transatlantic colonies, to be just as oppressed as black slaves, fail to take into account that stark and fundamental distinction. Colonial servants were bondsmen, indentured to labour, often under harsh conditions, but their contracts were not for life but for specific periods, usually an average of four to seven years, and were enforceable at law.”

These are the only academic criticisms of White Cargo and its thesis that I could find and just one is a full length academic review. It was published four years after the book was available for sale and currently languishes behind a paywall. It is therefore understandable that so many people have been greatly influenced by this book in the wake of a subdued and much delayed critical response by professional historians.

A (brief) critique

In my view the most damning feature of this book it that it does not inform the reader in a coherent or timely manner what the profound differences are between racialised chattel slavery and indentured servitude or penal servitude. I believe that this was purposefully done to gird support for the book’s thesis that “white slavery” preceded “black slavery” in Colonial America. Their narrative of a supposed transition from a system of “white slavery” to black slavery is not supported by the historical evidence and this narrative’s inherent false equivalence is as ahistorical as it is troubling. The transition that occurred was from white indentured servitude to black chattel slavery. It is worth noting that the transition is related to which bonded labour system dominated, not which preceded the other, for Africans were held in lifetime bondage in Anglo America from the very beginning and indentured servitude was reintroduced in the British West Indies after the abolition of slavery in the 1830s.To be sure, these institutions were interrelated; they existed on the same continuum of unfreedom and labour exploitation in colonial realms. But they are not interchangeable and they cannot be equated or conflated without doing enormous damage to the historical record. Which is why Prof Gad Heuman and Prof Trevor Burnard, specialists of the history of plantation slavery in the Americas, take care to elucidate how

Slavery is a form of labour exploitation connected to, but significantly different from, other forms of labour exploitation, such as indentured servitude… (The Routledge History of Slavery, p. 7)

The authors of White Cargo try to get around this by concluding that one should refer to indentured servants in Colonial America (both voluntary and involuntary) as “white slaves” by (1) redefining slavery in this context as a “feeling” and not a socio-legal status and (2) arguing that servants should be called “slaves” because Daniel Defoe said so. The authors disagree with Dr Eric Williams who directly challenged Defoe’s view in Capitalism and Slavery (1944)

“Defoe bluntly stated that the white servant was a slave. He was not. The servant’s loss of liberty was of limited duration, the Negro was [a] slave for life. The servant’s status could not descend to his offspring, Negro children took the status of the mother. The master at no time had absolute control over the person and liberty of his servant as he had over his slave. The servant had rights, limited but recognised by law and inserted into a contract.”

Thus as Williams clarified over seventy years ago, indentured servitude was never racialised, was mostly voluntary and always time-limited. Colonial Slavery in the Early Modern Atlantic world was perpetual, hereditary and was justified and sustained by anti-black racism. Richard B. Morris, an economic historian and former president of the American Historical Association, also alluded to Defoe’s claim in Government and Labor in Early America, 1946.

“To the author of Moll Flanders white servitude and slavery were identical. In fact, the system of indentured servitude differed in certain important essentials from Negro slavery.”

In a prior section Morris spelled out one of these essential distinctions.

“Unlike the slave the indentured servant was bound to labor for his master merely for the period of time expressly stated in his contract or, in the absence of a formal contract, as laid down by custom or statute. At the expiration of his service he was a free man.”

Frustratingly the authors of White Cargo are all too aware of the fundamental differences between slavery and servitude. A closer review reveals that these differences are buried in an erratic fashion throughout the book but never explained in any detail. It must be immensely confusing for any reader (especially those unfamiliar with the issues) to follow what is going on when after approximately one hundred pages of conflation the authors redraw their definitions by explaining that

“one of the fundamental differences drawn between white indentured servitude and black slavery [is that black slavery means forever].”

While it is not until page 176 that they admit that there was no transition from “white slavery” to black slavery as instead they note that there was a “shift from time-limited servitude of Englishmen to the lifetime slavery of Africans” which of course contradicts the book’s central thesis. These inconsistencies are present at various points throughout the text.To put it bluntly, White Cargo’s simplistic “servants were slaves, convicts were slaves and slaves were slaves” rationale is historically and semantically insupportable. Such reductionism and lack of adequate qualification or nuance collapses the distinctions between these different forms of bondage by default. This extreme revisionist methodology inevitably leads to an unsustainable ahistorical narrative which explains why White Cargo repeatedly refers to “white slaves” as being “indentured servants” in the text. The irony is not lost on this writer that the only way the authors can clarify that they are referring to “white slaves” throughout the book (rather than actual slaves) is to refer to them as indentured servants, which they were to begin with.This confusion is also reflected in some of the uncritical media coverage the book received when it was first published. NPR labelled their promotional piece “America’s First Slaves: Whites” and then concurred with the authors that “the slavery of Europeans was a prelude to the mass slavery of Africans in the Americas.” NPR thus used White Cargo to present this false equivalence of slavery and servitude to their audience as being historically legitimate, yet by the second sentence they refer to it as “white indentured servitude.” Which is it, NPR? Is it not “white slavery”? If NPR already swallowed the false equivalence then why is there this immediate need to qualify it?

Sensationalism with sparse context = bad history

White Cargo contains a multitude of over-the-top declarations and bizarre anachronistic comparisons that only become possible when a writer is trying to string a narrative together rather than contextualise, interrogate and understand the primary sources. In one jaw-dropping case they find it necessary to follow the activist Theodore W. Allen down the rabbit hole by trawling back to thirteenth century Ireland in an attempt to equate the abuse of the Gaelic Irish by Anglo-Normans with the experience of racialised chattel slaves in Colonial America in the eighteenth century. This false analogy that spans half a millennium omits the basic historical context, which means that it’s not historical writing they are producing, it’s rhetoric.Their decision to include ‘Arbeilt [sic] Macht Frei’ in the text, implying that indentured servitude (whether voluntary or forced) in Barbados in the mid-seventeenth century could be as futile as the exterminating slave labour enforced at death camps during the Holocaust, is dramatic comparison at its most puerile. Indentured labour in Barbados was a brutal station, especially so when the plantations transitioned to the more labour intensive sugarcane. The various laws that were passed in the colonies to protect servants illustrates how many were abused. The very nature of this system of servitude meant that they were treated as a sort of commodity while bound and undoubtedly in the first few decades of settlement significant numbers of servants died of disease before their indenture had expired.But the author’s quip of “if only” in reference to the servant’s hope of being free goes way too far. The Cromwellian officer Colonel William Brayne wrote to Secretary Thurloe from Barbados on the 10 January 1657 and he noted that servants who had served out their time were being “continually made free” and that they were leaving Barbados on a daily basis to no doubt find paid work and possibly even some land in another colony. Underscoring this is the approximation that 17,000 whites voluntarily left Barbados between 1650 and 1666. Many of this number were undoubtedly former servants in search of better opportunities. This was a possibility that a slave could never have.

Voir de même:

The story of slavery in black and white
Val Hennessy
The Daily Mail
30 April 2007

Here’s a shock revelation: slavery was not confined to the black population. In fact, during the 17th and 18th centuries, thousands of white Britons were marketed like cattle and transported to Britain’s American colonies to work in the fields.With the aim of emptying England’s prisons and clearing up the city streets, the authorities rounded up vagrants, orphans, prostitutes, beggars and criminals, and sold them into servitude.In theory, they would be ‘indentured servants’ to their masters for four to ten years. In practice, many of those shipped abroad perished on the journey or within two years of beginning forced labour.As the authors make clear in their riveting history, ‘for decades this underclass was treated just as savagely as black slaves and, indeed, toiled, suffered and rebelled alongside them.’ The white slave trade was prompted by fears that England was in danger of being overwhelmed by the poor and lawless.During Elizabeth I’s reign, her favourites grew rich while recurring harvest disasters and land-grabbing left hordes of peasants and labourers on the edge of survival.In 1570, in Coventry alone there were 2,000 beggars on the streets. A desperate crowd of 20,000 hungry people congregated at a grand funeral begging for bread.What was to be done? Enter bloodstained villain Humphrey Gilbert, of whom your reviewer has never heard and who makes no appearance in school history books.Half-brother to Sir Walter Raleigh, he was sent to command English troops in Ireland. Ordered to seize Irish land for the Queen, he launched a gory ‘ethnic cleansing’ campaign to replace native Irish with England’s surplus peasants.As he gloated: ‘I slew all those that did belong to, feed, accompany or maintain any outlaws or traitors… putting man, woman and child to the sword.’ His victims’ heads were stuck on rows of pikes.Thousands died. Gilbert was knighted. Thus were seeded the Irish Troubles, as well as the practice of offloading the troublesome English to work the land in the Queen’s colonies.With information gleaned from contemporary letters, journals and court archives, White Cargo is packed with proof that the brutalities usually associated with black slavery were, for centuries, also inflicted on whites.For example, of 1,200 whites shipped to America in 1619, 800 perished in the first year, killed by native Americans, disease, beatings, starvation, and infections caught on ship.Particularly harrowing are details of the mass street roundups of vagrant children to be transported overseas.The city paid the masters £5 a head to take them off its hands as ‘apprentices’, ostensibly to learn a trade.In reality, most were destined for tobacco plantations. Few lived long enough to reach adulthood. Of the first 300 children shipped, only 12 were still alive four years on. Their sad fate is largely forgotten, yet they arrived on the plantations four months before the first shipload of West Indian slaves about whom book after book has been written.Those whites transported as ‘indentured servants’ or who volunteered as ‘good-willers’ after being promised better lives were, in theory at least, supposed to gain their freedom after completing their agreed stint.In practice, most of them died before their time was up, or had penalty years imposed for misbehaviour. Escape attempts or becoming a father, for example, meant three extra years.Becoming a mother meant your child became the plantation owner’s chattel until he or she was 21.The authors explain ‘the rape of a female slave was not a crime, but a mere trespass on the master’s property’. Discipline was barbaric – a mutinous servant, for instance, was sent to the pillory for four days, his ears nailed to the post and given daily public whippings.Libraries and archives are full of details of lashings and beatings. A white girl field worker was beaten to death in 1625. A youth died from a blow to the head by his master.By the 1640s, Irish and Scottish workers were being shipped to the Caribbean to clear tropical forests and plant sugar cane.Interestingly, by mid-1660, a high proportion of the working population in Barbados was Irish. To this day, people there have Irish names and are known as Red Legs, because of their blistering fair skin.This book will certainly make readers re-evaluate all the recent appeasement and hype about apologising for the slave trade.Where do you begin? How do you apologise to long-dead and exploited street children? It is sobering to remind ourselves that the wealth of America and Britain came about because thousands of powerless workers were made to sacrifice their rights and freedom so that others could become rich.Those workers hoped and believed that one day their turn would come, too. Sadly, for most of them, they died unremembered and in terrible servitude.

Voir aussi:

Master and Servant

Every schoolchild recognizes certain images of this nation’s darker side: slaves kidnapped from their native lands, shipped in disease-ridden holds, traded like animals, and then whipped and worked on America’s plantations.

Don Jordan and Michael Walsh, both of whom have made documentaries and both of whom live in London, retell that familiar tale — although the victims here are not Africans but English, Irish and Scottish people, sent to the colonies largely against their will in the 17th and 18th centuries.

School Apologizes For Asking Students To List ‘Positive Aspects’ Of Slavery

“To be clear, there is no debate about slavery. It is immoral and a crime against humanity,” the superintendent said in a statement. 

A charter school network has apologized for an assignment asking students to list the positive and negative aspects of slavery, calling the worksheet a “clear mistake.”

“To be clear, there is no debate about slavery,” Aaron Kindel, superintendent of Great Hearts Texas, said in a statement posted on Facebook Thursday. “It is immoral and a crime against humanity.”

On Wednesday, Roberto Livar posted a photo of a worksheet he said his son, Manu, was asked to complete in his eighth-grade American history class at Great Hearts Monte Vista in San Antonio. The worksheet is titled, “The Life of Slaves: A Balanced View.”

Livar told HuffPost that his son was uneasy about the nature of the assignment and felt compelled to bring it home and show his parents. Livar said he was “pissed” as soon as he saw the worksheet.

“We are fully aware that there is a concerted effort by the far-right nationally to reframe slavery as being ‘not that bad’ and trying to revise the civil war as being about ‘states rights’ and not about slavery,” he told HuffPost in a Facebook message. “We were concerned that this assignment fell in line with that ideology and were naturally concerned, as well as other parents.”

Other families and members of the community upset about the worksheet began sharing Livar’s post, including Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas). Castro called the assignment “absolutely unacceptable” in a tweet on Thursday.

Kindel said in his statement that the incident was “limited to one teacher at just one campus,” and that the teacher has been put on leave while Great Hearts “collect[s] all the facts.”  He added that Great Hearts will “conduct an audit” of the book that inspired the worksheet to see if it should be permanently replaced.

Livar told HuffPost that Great Hearts staff invited his family and other concerned parents to a meeting on Thursday to discuss the matter, and that Manu was “commended for his action of bringing this to light and was even told he was ‘very brave.’”

However, he noted that his son has been “attacked by many at his school” for supposedly harming its reputation.

Livar, who said he and his family are Mexican-American and identify as Chicano, chalked the whole ordeal up to a lack of diversity at the school among the student body and staff.

He added that he sees what happened as a sign of problems stemming beyond his son’s school.

“These issues are not isolated to one school or one book,” Livar said. “These issues are systemic and continue up the chain all the way to the Texas School Board of Education.

Voir par ailleurs:

Debunking the imagery of the “Irish slaves” meme

Those that promote the myth of Irish perpetual hereditary chattel slavery in Colonial America use a variety of images entirely unrelated to indentured servitude to accompany their anti-history. I examined a selection of them.

(This is part one of my six-part series debunking the meme. See Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five and Part Six)


1. Sale of a Slave Girl in Rome by Jean-Léon Gérôme (1884)

The is the most common image that accompanies spurious “Irish: the Forgotten White Slaves” articles. It is cropped from a painting by Jean-Léon Gérôme. In this work, Gérôme imagined a scene in a Roman slave market from about two thousand years ago.

The original

2. The “Redlegs” of Barbados

The “Irish slaves” meme has been embraced by racists and white nationalists. The meme below was shared by a Tea Party Leader in 2013. It accompanied her advice to African Americans to “move on” from slavery.

But this photograph is not from the U.S., nor does it depict “White Irish slaves.”

Historian Matthew C. Reilly has done extensive research on the “poor white” community of Barbados. This photo was taken in Barbados in 1908, and as Reilly has noted none of those pictured have Irish surnames and these families appear to have both African and European ancestry. Reilly writes

“Photograph locally known as “The ‘Redlegs’ of Barbados”. Pictured are fishermen residents of Bath in the parish of St. John taken in 1908. Photo courtesy of Mr. Richard Goddard.”

“The photograph is widely known amongst island history buffs as well as those interested in family genealogy. On several occasions I encountered individuals who had traced their ancestry to one of the impoverished men pictured in the 1908 portrait of the “Redleg” fishermen. Until my conversation with Fred Watson (Figure 7.2), however, I had never heard it referred to as a “family photograph”. Represented are members of the Watson, Goddard, King, and Haynes families, surnames popular amongst the “Redleg” population for several generations and still present in St. John today. Fred was able to identify several of his father’s and mother’s brothers that were pictured in the photograph including his mother’s brother Simeon Goddard found on the lower left and his father’s brother Joe Watson found in center of the back row. The revelation that the photograph depicts an extended matrilineal kinship network was made more significant by the realization that phenotypes indicate that this network involved Afro-Barbadian as well as “poor white” genealogies.”

3. Survivors of a Japanese POW camp during World War Two


4. Union Army soldier on his release from Andersonville Prison in May, 1865

Probably the most perverse co-option of all. Victims of the horror of the Confederate Andersonville prison appropriated by Neo-Confederates to support their racist meme. N.B. the Ferguson hashtag.


5. Child labourers on a Texan farm, 1913

This is another popular image. It is used here to promote an “Irish Slave Trade” movie idea. This photo of child labourers was taken in 1913 by the great Lewis Hine. The children were working on H.M. Lane’s farm near Bells, Texas. Their father (and uncle for some of the children) was working the plough nearby. This photo is sometimes used on Stormfront when discussing “white slaves.”


6. The East India Company logo

The ongoing “we were slaves too!” appropriation of the Atlantic Slave Trade led to this misfire. The East India Company logo tattooed as an “Irish slave” branding. I asked this tattooist about the relevance of the tattoo and he referred me to an inactive (and since deleted) Facebook page named “We Were Irish and Slaves”. This Facebook page was the source and inspiration for the tattoo design. The featured branding irons (first and second images) are from the Wilberforce Museum. The third image, the one that the tattoo is based on, is a stamp of the East India Company, not a branding iron. It goes without saying that indentured servants were not branded like slaves on their arrival in the colonies.


7. Former Enslaved Children in New Orleans, 1864

The comfort and ease at which some Irish and Irish-Americans appropriate the history of black chattel slavery is remarkable and disturbing. Guilty of the appropriation below is the “Ireland Long Held in Chains” Facebook page. They shared this photo of former “white” slave children in New Orleans and labelled it “Irish Slavery — Three Slaves”. This piece of anti-slavery propaganda during the American Civil War was aimed at a Northern white audience. These enslaved children were “the offspring of white fathers through two or three generations.” The fact that many slave owners in Louisiana were of Irish descent only makes this appropriation more reprehensible. In my review of Irish surnames and slave-ownership I found that 159 different Irish surnames were represented among slave owners in Louisiana in 1850. These included Brady, Burke, Carroll, Connolly, Collins, Cullen, Crowley, Darcy, Devane, Hickey, Hogan, Keane, Lynch, Mahoney, McCormack, and Murphy. You can read about the history of these photographs in Mary Niall Mitchell’s article in the New York Times.


8. Group portrait of child labourers in Port Royal, South Carolina (1911)

This “white slavery” meme (which appropriates the Zong Massacre) uses one of Lewis Hine’s photographs. Its caption reads “Group portrait of young girls working as oyster shuckers at the canning company at Port Royal, SC, 1911. From left to right: Josie, six years old, Bertha, six years old, and Sophie, 10 years old.”

Here is the original photograph.

This unbelievably ahistorical meme also suggests that in seventeenth Ireland “it was was no more [a] sin to kill an Irishman than a dog or any other brute.” This quote is not from the seventeenth century but the fourteenth, which makes it a full 300 years out of context. The original quote was made in 1317 in the Remonstrance of the Irish Chiefs to Pope John XXII. According to Diarmuid Scully (University College Cork) the Remonstrance described Domhnall, its author, as the ‘King of Ulster and by hereditary right the true heir to the whole of Ireland’ who “claims the support of the Irish élite and people, calls for papal backing against English rule and offers the kingship of Ireland to Edward Bruce of Scotland.” It wished to revoke the Laudabiliter. The Remonstrance accuses “the monks of the Cistercian order of Granard, in Ardagh diocese, so too the monks of Inch, of the same order, in Down diocese, shamelessly fulfil in deed what they proclaim in word. For, bearing arms publicly, they attack the Irish and slay them, and nevertheless they celebrate their masses.” This is to illustrate to the papal powers that some of the Christian orders in Ireland were murderous, heretical and did not warrant the Pope’s backing. This was a propagandic retort to Gerald of Wales’ infamous assertion that the English lay claim to Ireland as the Irish were not truly civilised or Christian. The Remonstrance inverts these slanderous justifications for the Cambro-Norman conquest of Ireland. William Petty alluded to this brutal 14th century colonial reality in the Political Anatomy of Ireland (1672)

“The English in Ireland before Henry the VII’s time, lived in Ireland as the Europeans do in America, or as several Nations do now upon the same Continent; so as an Englishman was not punishable for killing an Irish-man, and they were governed by different Laws; the Irish by the Brehon-Law, and the English there by the Laws of England…[then] English in Ireland, growing poor and discontented, degenerate into Irish; & vice versa; Irish, growing into Wealth and Favour, reconcile to the English.”


9. The HMS Owen Glendower, an anti-slave trade frigate

Irish Central decided to use a painting of the HMS Glendower to accompany their article about “forgotten white slaves”. It states that this ship was used to bring “human cargo to South American[sic] and the Indies.” This article repeats the absurd claim that an “Irish slave trade” ended in 1839. But the HMS Glendower was not a slave ship. In fact it was used from 1821 to 1824 to suppress the slave trade.


10. The Putumayo Atrocities, 1900s-1910s

The Ancient Order of Hibernians in Florida (State Board) appropriated an image of heavily chained Putumayo Indians, implying that they are “Irish slaves”.


11. Timucua men cultivating a field and Timucua women planting corn or beans (Florida, c. 1560)

This image of the Timucua people planting their fields appears on some “Irish slaves” and “white slaves” blogs. The Neo-Confederate Save Your Heritage website frames it as “white slaves” working in South Carolina.

Florida Indians planting seeds of beans or maize, c. 1560 by Theodor de Bry, (1528–1598) Engraver: Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues, (1533?-1588)

12. An illustration of Elizabeth Brownrigg, a torturer and murderer who was executed in England in 1767.

This “Irish slaves” meme uses an illustration of the infamous Elizabeth Brownrigg taken from The New Newgate Calendar, a sensationalist periodical which was published in England in the 1860s. The text of the meme is ridiculous; the values are apparently an invention, and it almost goes without saying that slaves were generally more expensive than servants because they were slaves. Lifetime ownership vs. 4–7 years indentures and slave-owners also claimed their children as their property. Although rare, in times of shortage (when labour demand/wages were high in Britain and thus migration unattractive) white servants’ contracts could be more expensive than slaves. It was a crime to murder a servant, but whipping was allowed as long as it was “moderate correction.” The claim that “African slaves were treated much better in Colonial America” is racist propaganda.

Here is the original image.


13. ‘Mulatto’ slave being whipped in an anti-slavery novel

This illustration is appropriated from the 19th century anti-slavery novel The White Slave; or, Memoirs of a Fugitive by Richard Hildreth. The protagonist being whipped is a ‘mulatto’ slave. His mother was enslaved and his father the enslaver.


14. Breaker boys working in Ewen Breaker of Pennsylvania Coal Co. (1911)

This is the newest version of the racist meme. It appeared online during Black History Month 2016 and has been shared 102,000 times so far. The photo does not depict “Irish slaves” but breaker boys working in Ewen Breaker of Pennsylvania Coal Co., South Pittston, Pennsylvania. The original photograph was taken by Lewis Hine in January 1911. Hine was the principle investigative photographer for National Child Labor Committee (NCLC).


15. A black man being whipped in Delaware (1920s)

This image is used by Neo-Nazis on this website to depict “Irish slaves”

from The Irish Slave Trade- White Cargo

Somehow it has made it from here into the mainstream.

But this image is clearly not an “Irish slave” in the 1800s. It was taken in Delaware in the 1920s and it shows an unnamed black man, fastened to a whipping post, being tortured.


16. A promotional photograph for a performance of Dion Boucicault’s play “The Octoroon” in London (c. 1862)

Here is a link to the original photograph. This satirical image was intended to challenge the audience by reversing racial stereotypes and it was used to promote the play during it’s run at the Adelphi theatre in London. Dion Boucicault is one of Ireland’s most famous playwrights and The Octoroon was his anti-slavery production based on Thomas Mayne Reid’s novel The Quadroon.


17. A stock photograph of a “crying black man” and a photo of Kevin Cunningham.

Racist meme that appeared on the “White History Month” Facebook Page (November 2015)

This exceptionally racist meme features a stock photograph and a photograph of Kevin Cunningham, an Irish-American who became famous after he started an online petition on change.org calling for the prosecution of George Zimmerman, the man who shot Trayvon Martin.


18. English Women being imported and sold to Planters in Colonial Virginia (1620s)

This meme of the “selling of Irish women” appears on multiple “Irish slaves” websites (inc. the Ancient Order of Hibernians) and across social media.

This image is actually taken from Barnes’ popular history of the United States of America

Barnes’ popular history of the United States of America, p. 38

The ratio of women to men was very low in the colony and so for the benefit of the colonial project, as Edmund S. Morgan describes it, a shipment was arranged by Virginia Company members “of a hundred willing maids, to be sold to the planters who could afford to buy a wife.” (American Slavery, American Freedom, p.95) So the image does not depict Irish women being sold into slavery. It depicts English women being sold into marriage. The planter was paying for the transport costs.

For more information about the role and limited rights of women in Colonial Virginia see Julie Richter’s overview.


19. Edwardian Servants, Byfield, Northamptonshire (c. 1920)

Some of these websites take the term ‘indentured servants’ literally…They turned this image of two maids photographed in a house in Byfield, Northamptonshire, sometime between 1896 and 1920….

…and made it into an awful “white slavery” meme.

from the Irish Slave Trade, Ancient Order of Hibernians (Florida)

20. Two women setting seed potatoes in Co. Antrim (1890s)

This is not an image of “Irish slaves” or indentured servants but of two women in Glenshesk, Co. Antrim planting potatoes. The photograph was taken by Robert J. Welch for the Congested Districts Boards in the late 1890s.


21. The Damm family, Los Angeles, 1987

The “Irish slaves” meme is also used to deny the existence of white privilege. It is often accompanied by an image of the Damm family taken by the photographer Mary Ellen Mark in Los Angeles in 1987.


22. Italian Miners in Belgium (c. 1900)

This photograph was recently published on the far-right “Against Globalist Agenda” Facebook page and appended with the title “Irish slaves imported to America”

But this photo actually depicts miners in Belgium in the early 20th century.


23. A photograph of the Cliffs of Moher

This meme uses a wistful photograph of the Cliffs of Moher. Here is the uncropped original.


24. An advert for two runaway Irish servants

“Make a toast to all the Irish Slaves who died making America great.”

“It says indented servants?”

“Shut up.”


25. An image from a Human Trafficking website and a photograph of President Obama’s visit to Moneygall, Ireland

This meme was created by conservative artist JP Hawkins in 2o13. https://twitter.com/jphawkins2009/status/615982442361413632
The caption reads “Obama visits Ireland, but fails to point out that the Irish were 1st slaves! Why?” The background image is a stock image taken from the Shutter Stock website and is tagged ‘Domestic Violence’.

26. A photo of the Irish actor Cillian Murphy

I know what you are thinking. I have no idea either.


7 Responses to Politiquement correct: Attention, un esclavage peut en cacher un autre (No white slaves, please, we’re Americans !)

  1. jcdurbant dit :

    Chaque année, le chef de l’État commémore l’abolition de l’esclavage. Depuis 2007, la cérémonie se déroulait dans les jardins du Luxembourg à Paris, le 10 mai, date à laquelle, en 2001, le Sénat avait adopté la «loi Taubira» reconnaissant la traite et l’esclavage comme un crime contre l’humanité. Mais comme Emmanuel Macron ne veux rien faire comme ses prédécesseurs, il a décidé de changer le lieu et la date de la commémoration. Cette année, la cérémonie s’est déroulée ce 27 avril, jour où la fin de l’esclavage a été promulguée en 1848. Quant au lieu, le chef de l’État a choisi l’écrin symbolique du Panthéon, où Victor Schoelcher, l’un des fervents défenseurs de l’abolition, est inhumé…

    http://www.lefigaro.fr/politique/le-scan/2018/04/27/25001-20180427ARTFIG00146-macron-commemore-l-abolition-de-l-esclavage-au-pantheon.php

    J'aime

  2. jcdurbant dit :

    CLIENTELISME ELECTORAL ET MEMOIRE

    Est-il pertinent de ressasser le souvenir de la traite atlantique tout en feignant d’ignorer la résurgence de l’esclavage, de l’Amérique latine au sous-continent indien en passant par la Méditerranée et l’Afrique ?… 170 ans après son abolition, l’esclavage revient en France au cœur des enjeux mémoriels. Le phénomène est corrélé à l’augmentation rapide du nombre de résidents originaires d’Afrique subsaharienne et à la montée des revendications racialistes. Tout a commencé en 2001 avec la loi Taubira qui a fait de la traite européenne (et elle seule) un crime contre l’humanité. Le 10 mai, anniversaire de cette loi, est devenu une Journée des « Mémoires de la traite négrière, de l’esclavage et de leurs abolitions ».

    Jusqu’au 29 juin 2018, on peut voir sur le site Arte un excellent documentaire en quatre épisodes de 52 minutes chacun sur Les routes de l’esclavage.

    Le premier épisode ci-dessous rappelle que l’esclavage est une institution immémoriale, même si des sociétés anciennes ne l’ont pas pratiqué. Il note que les musulmans ont, les premiers, pratiqué le négoce international des esclaves, achetant d’abord des Slaves puis, de plus en plus, des Africains, les uns et les autres étant préalablement castrés… L’esclavage était une institution très répandue sous l’Antiquité à de rares exceptions près (Ancien Empire égyptien, Crète, Étrurie) comme le rappelle la série Les routes de l’esclavage diffusée sur Arte le 1er mai 2018. Il était avant tout la conséquence des guerres, les captifs ayant vocation à servir leurs maîtres.

    En Afrique subsaharienne, du fait de l’abondance des terres et de la rareté des hommes, c’était le nombre d’esclaves et de femmes (polygamie) qui déterminait le rang social de chacun, au contraire de l’Europe ou de l’Extrême-Orient, où la richesse se mesurait à la possession de terres. Dès avant notre ère, l’esclavage est donc devenu un élément central des sociétés subsahariennes.

    Quand les Arabes musulmans sont entrés en relations avec les chefs africains au VIIIe siècle, ceux-ci n’ont trouvé à leur vendre que des esclaves (et de l’or), en échange des biens manufacturés venus d’Orient. L’Afrique subsaharienne est ainsi devenue la première source d’esclaves pour les Orientaux et, peu à peu, dans le monde musulman, l’esclave s’est confondu avec le Noir, les mêmes termes désignant souvent en arabe l’un et l’autre. Ainsi est né le racisme avec même une justification religieuse, la « malédiction de Cham ». Maudits, les esclaves noirs l’étaient par la castration préalable qui en tuait la grande majorité avant que les survivants ne servent comme eunuques dans les plantations de basse Mésopotamie ou les harems de Bagdad et du Caire !

    Castrés étaient aussi les esclaves blancs capturés dans les Balkans et à l’Est de l’Europe et revendus aux musulmans par les marchands vénitiens. Le quai des Esclavons, dans la cité des Doges, en garde le souvenir. Mais à l’orée de l’An Mil, dans la chrétienté occidentale, l’esclavage tomba en désuétude et il en vint à être réprouvé jusqu’à inspirer au roi de France Louis X un célèbre édit selon lequel « le sol de France affranchit l’esclave qui le touche » (1315).

    La série Arte souligne ici le rôle précurseur des Portugais dans la réintroduction de l’esclavage en Occident au XVe siècle. Elle montre que cette pratique n’avait pas de connotation raciste, les noirs étant aussi très présents à Lisbonne en qualité d’hommes libres et même de nobles… Elle néglige curieusement les Espagnols qui ont pourtant été les premiers à introduire des Africains en Amérique en 1502. Du fait du regain du commerce dans la Méditerranée, les Européens de la fin du Moyen Âge connaissaient néanmoins l’existence de l’esclavage et s’en accommodaient tout en le réprouvant (cette attitude est comparable à la nôtre vis-à-vis de l’exploitation des femmes et des enfants dans les usines de Chine ou du Bangladesh). Marco Polo, par exemple, a acquis au cours de ses voyages en Orient un esclave qu’il affranchira sur son lit de mort.

    Comme le voyageur génois, des négociants italiens, espagnols et portugais achetèrent des esclaves au Maghreb et introduisirent l’économie de plantation au sud des péninsules italienne et ibérique (le même phénomène est en voie de se reproduire au XXIe siècle, à la faveur de la grande migration africaine : des migrants sont asservis par des entrepreneurs sans scrupules dans les latifundias d’Andalousie et des Pouilles). Au milieu du XVe siècle, des marins en quête de profit eurent aussi l’idée de razzier des esclaves au fur et à mesure de leur progression le long des côtes africaines, et de les revendre à Lagos, au Portugal. Les Portugais établirent sur la petite île tropicale de Sao Tomé une première colonie à vocation sucrière, avec des esclaves achetés au royaume du Kongo. Il n’y a pas de connotation raciale dans ce commerce singulier. Des Africains christianisés y participent aux côtés des Portugais et possèdent eux-mêmes des esclaves. Une partie d’entre eux s’intègre même à la société aristocratique de Lisbonne.

    Ayant mis le pied au Brésil, les Portugais y reproduisirent en 1516 les plantations sucrières qui avaient fait la fortune de Sao Tomé. Dans le même temps, les Espagnols importèrent des esclaves africains aussi bien que des travailleurs européens dans leurs colonies du Nouveau Monde. Ce trafic se développa très vite en dépit des condamnations pontificales.

    Ce troisième épisode de la série Arte, le plus brutal, montre comment, par cupidité, des Européens se sont lancés au XVIIe siècle dans l’économie de plantation et son corollaire, l’esclavage, en donnant à celui-ci un statut juridique. C’est à cette époque que sont apparus en Occident les préjugés racistes… Notons qu’ils étaient déjà très présents dans le monde musulman depuis la fin du premier millénaire.

    La traite atlantique prit de l’ampleur au XVIIe siècle et au Siècle des Lumières, le mal-nommé. Elle fut encouragée par une idéologie qui avait à l’époque cours en Europe, le mercantilisme : pour la prospérité de leur État, les gouvernants croient utile de subventionner l’économie sucrière et le commerce négrier… Elle fut aussi rendue possible parce que, sur les côtes du golfe de Guinée, des chefs africains se montraient désireux de vendre leurs propres esclaves aux navires de passage. Cela relevait pour eux d’un commerce ordinaire, grâce auquel ils pouvaient s’approvisionner en biens manufacturés et en armes.

    Dans les colonies hispaniques, encore imprégnées d’esprit médiéval, les esclaves étaient assimilés aux anciens serfs ; les préjugés raciaux étaient limités et les métissages fréquents. Dans les colonies françaises et anglaises, d’esprit plus moderne, l’esclavage avait un caractère plus formaliste. Il était ressenti comme une aberration morale et néanmoins pratiqué parce qu’il apportait du confort à bon compte (un peu comme aujourd’hui nous persistons à brûler du pétrole pour notre agrément, tout en ayant clairement conscience de détruire la planète).

    La morale est sauve, peut-on dire, puisque toutes les régions qui ont pratiqué (ou pratiquent encore) l’esclavage figurent parmi les plus pauvres de leur catégorie. Du sud des États-Unis aux Indes en passant par la péninsule ibérique, l’Amérique tropicale, l’Afrique et le Moyen-Orient, l’asservissement des hommes n’a jamais produit d’enrichissement durable. L’esclavage et ses produits dérivés, le sucre, le café et le coton, ont pu être un mode d’enrichissement spéculatif. Ils n’ont jamais été un facteur de progrès (de la même façon qu’aujourd’hui, le pétrole et le gaz peuvent outrageusement enrichir certains oligarques sans générer pour autant de développement).

    La révolution industrielle à l’origine de la prospérité de l’Europe et des États-Unis s’est forgée dès le Moyen Âge dans les États de droit tels que l’Angleterre, le Bassin parisien, les pays rhénans et la plaine du Pô. Elle s’est épanouie au XIXe siècle dans ces régions et en Nouvelle-Angleterre sans relation évidente avec les systèmes esclavagistes (aujourd’hui encore, le développement vient exclusivement du travail et de l’inventivité des hommes, dans la recherche et l’industrie, en Amérique du nord, en Europe, autour de la mer de Chine…).

    La série Arte se conclut sur les abolitions occidentales en soulignant toutefois l’accélération des trafics au début du XIXe siècle, en particulier vers le Brésil, principale destination des esclaves africains et dernier pays occidental à abolir l’esclavage en 1888. Elle établit toutefois une continuité abusive entre la traite atlantique et la colonisation de l’Afrique à la fin du XIXe siècle (la « course au drapeau »), les deux phénomènes n’ayant guère à voir l’un avec l’autre. Elle s’abuse également en évoquant les revenus mirobolants qu’aurait généré l’économie esclavagiste. Celle-ci a davantage freiné le développement de l’Occident qu’elle ne l’a facilité (voir plus haut).

    Au vu de ce rappel historique, on peut se demander s’il est bien nécessaire de créer en France une fondation mémorielle et si l’hôtel de la Marine est le lieu le plus approprié pour celle-ci. Ne faudrait-il pas plutôt se préoccuper de la résurgence de l’esclavage en Amérique latine, en Afrique, au Moyen-Orient et aux Indes (esclavage pour dettes, ventes d’enfants, capture de migrants) ? À moins que l’on ne veuille avant tout persuader les Français de leur responsabilité dans un fléau auquel la majorité d’entre eux n’ont jamais pris la moindre part, pas plus que leurs ancêtres jusqu’à la trentième génération ? Destinée à satisfaire quelques associations racialistes, dans une approche clientéliste, l’annonce du président Macron est de nature à aggraver un peu plus les fractures au sein de la nation française.

    Alban Dignat

    https://www.herodote.net/Esclavage_une_memoire_mal_orientee-article-1723.php#routes

    J'aime

  3. jcdurbant dit :

    TRAFIC D’ETRES HUMAINS: QUEL RACKET ET QUELLE STRATEGIE D’INTIMIDATION PSYCHOLOGIQUE DU LOBBY PRO-MIGRANTS ? (Après les lobbies subversifs pro-migrants des enfants gâtés de l’Occident, la gauche anti-nationale post-ouvrière et les barons voleurs du hig tech, devinez qui à coup de rhétorique victimaire et de manipulation sémantique tente de faire passer pour des horribles racistes / fascistes les défenseurs des frontières et des lois sécuritaires pourtant démocratiquement adoptées ?)

    « Ne fermez pas les portes à ceux qui frappent. Le monde des migrants et des réfugiés est la croix de l’humanité. »

    Pape François

    « Noël vient quand il arrive. Bienvenue aux migrants à Porto Salvo di Lampedusa. »

    Curé de Lampedusa

    « Si nous ne sommes pas acquittés par un tribunal, nous le serons dans les livres d’histoire. »

    Carola Rackette

    « J’ai la peau blanche, j’ai grandi dans un pays riche, j’ai le bon passeport, j’ai pu faire trois universités différentes et j’ai fini mes études à 23 ans. Mon obligation morale est d’aider les gens qui n’ont pas bénéficié des mêmes conditions que moi (…). Les pauvres, ils ne se sentent pas bienvenus, imaginez leur souffrance (…), j’ai voulu accoster de force car beaucoup risquaient de se suicider sur la bateau et étaient en danger depuis 17 jours d’immobilisation. »

    Carola Rackette

    « Si je dois payer par la prison ou par une amende le fait de sauver les vies de quelques personnes, je le ferais. »

    Oscar Camp (Proactiva open arms)

    « Dans toute l’Europe, Carole est devenue un symbole. Nous n’avons jamais reçu autant de dons. »

    Chris Grodotzki (Sea Watch)

    « Dans certains cas, vous ne pouvez pas respecter les lois et vous pouvez même au contraire, dans des cas de nécessité, enfreindre les lois. »

    Graziano Delrio (PD)

    Arrêtée par la police italienne, le capitaine du bateau Sea Watch, Carola Rackete, semble être devenue l’héroïne de toute une gauche européenne dont l’activisme humanitaire et victimiste pro-migrants sert en réalité une idéologie anti-nationale, anti-frontières et viscéralement hostile à la civilisation européenne-occidentale assimilée au Mal et dont les « fautes » passées et présentes ne pourraient être expiées qu’en acceptant l’auto-submersion migratoire et islamique…

    Rappelons que le Sea-Watch 3, navire de 600 tonnes battant pavillon hollandais et cofinancé par les fonds de George Soros et autres riches contributeurs, a non seulement « récupéré » des migrants illégaux acheminés par des passeurs nord-africains, ce qui est en soi un viol de la loi, mais a délibérément forcé le blocus des eaux territoriales italiennes, donc violé la souveraineté de ce pays. De ce fait, son capitaine, l’Allemande Carola Rackete, va être présentée à un juge en début de semaine, à Agrigente, dans le sud de la Sicile, puis répondra des faits « d’aide à l’immigration clandestine » (punie de prison par la loi italienne et le « décret-sécurité » (decreto-sicurezza) du gouvernement / Ligue (5 étoiles de Rome), puis de « résistance à un bateau de guerre ». Quant aux 42 migrants clandestins de la Sea Watch 3 débarqués après l’arrestation de la capitaine-activiste allemande (11 migrants plus « vulnérables » avaient déjà été débarqués légalement), ils ont fini par débarquer à Lampedusa après que la France, l’Allemagne, le Portugal, le Luxembourg et la Finlande ont accepté un plan de répartition visant à en accueillir chacun quelques-uns.

    Pendant ce temps, des petites embarcations moins identifiables et qui ne font pas la une des médias continuent d’arriver chaque jour à Lampedusa et au sud d’Agrigente (200 ces derniers jours). Et d’autres navires affrétés par des ONG pro-migrants continuent de défier les autorités italiennes ou d’autres pays (Malte, Espagne, Grèce, etc.) dans l’indifférence générale et en violation banalisée de la loi et du principe de protection des frontières. On peut citer par exemple l’ONG espagnole Proactiva open arms, qui patrouille au large de la Libye malgré la menace d’une amende de 200 000 à 900 000 euros brandie par les autorités espagnoles. « Si je dois payer par la prison ou par une amende le fait de sauver les vies de quelques personnes, je le ferais », a d’ailleurs assuré Oscar Camps, fondateur de l’ONG. Utilisant la même rhétorique de « résistance » et de « désobéissance civile » face à une autorité étatique « répressive », Carola Rackette expliquait elle aussi au Spiegel, quelques jours seulement avant d’accoster à Lampedusa : « Si nous ne sommes pas acquittés par un tribunal, nous le serons dans les livres d’histoire. »

    La stratégie d’intimidation psychologique des ONG et lobbies subversifs pro-migrants consiste en fait à adopter une rhétorique victimaire et hautement culpabilisatrice qui a pour but de faire passer pour des horribles racistes / fascistes les défenseurs des frontières et des lois sécuritaires pourtant démocratiquement adoptées. Carola Rackete a ainsi déclaré au journal italien La Repubblica : « J’ai la peau blanche, j’ai grandi dans un pays riche, j’ai le bon passeport, j’ai pu faire trois universités différentes et j’ai fini mes études à 23 ans. Mon obligation morale est d’aider les gens qui n’ont pas bénéficié des mêmes conditions que moi (…). Les pauvres, ils ne se sentent pas bienvenus, imaginez leur souffrance (…), j’ai voulu accoster de force car beaucoup risquaient de se suicider sur la bateau et étaient en danger depuis 17 jours d’immobilisation ».

    Très fier de lui et de son « coup », Chris Grodotzki, le président de l’ONG Sea Watch, se réjouit que « dans toute l’Europe, Carole est devenue un symbole. Nous n’avons jamais reçu autant de dons », indiquant qu’en Italie une cagnotte a recueilli dimanche 400 000 euros. Samedi, en Allemagne, deux stars de la télévision, Jan Böhmermann et Klaas Heufer-Umlauf, ont lancé quant à eux une cagnotte et 500 000 euros ont été récoltés en moins de vingt-quatre heures. En fait, l’aide aux migrants clandestins est une activité lucrative pour les ONG, et pas seulement pour les passeurs et les établissements payés pour offrir le gîte et l’accueil avec les deniers publics.

    D’après Matteo Salvini, Carola Rackete serait une « criminelle » qui aurait tenté de « tuer des membres des forces de l’ordre italienne ». Il est vrai que la vedette de la Guarda della Finanza, (12 mètres), très légère, n’aurait pas résisté au choc du navire de la Sea Watch (600 tonnes) si elle ne s’était pas retirée. Inculpée par le procureur d’Agrigente, la capitaine de la Sea Watch risque jusqu’à dix ans de prison pour « résistance ou violence envers un navire de guerre ». En fait, bien moins que dans de nombreux autres pays du monde, y compris démocratiques comme l’Australie, les Etats-Unis ou la Hongrie. Le procureur d’Agrigente, Luigi Patronaggio, qui est pourtant connu pour ne pas être du tout favorable à la Ligue de Matteo Salvini, a d’ailleurs qualifié le geste de Carola Rackete de « violence inadmissible » et placé la capitaine du navire humanitaire aux « arrêts domiciliaires » (contrôle judiciaire avec assignation à résidence), avant le lancement d’une procédure de flagrant délit. L’intéressée a répondu via le Corriere della Sera, en affirmant que « ce n’était pas un acte de violence, seulement de désobéissance ».

    Depuis, de Rome à Berlin, et au sein de toute la gauche et l’extrême-gauche européenne, « Carola » est devenue une nouvelle « héroïne de la désobéissance civile », le concept clef de la gauche marxiste ou libertaire pour justifier moralement le fait de bafouer délibérément les règles des Etats et de violer les lois démocratiques qui font obstacle à leur idéologie anti-nationale. Et la désinformation médiatique consiste justement à faire passer l’appui que Carola Rackete a reçu – de la part de stars de TV, de politiques bien-pensants et de lobbies pro-migrants chouchoutés par les médias – pour un « soutien de l’Opinion publique ». En Allemagne, du président de l’Église évangélique, Heinrich Bedford-Strohm, au PDG de Siemens, Joe Kaeser, de nombreuses voix se sont élevées pour prendre sa défense comme si elle était une nouvelle Pasionaria « antifasciste / antinazie », 90 ans plus tard…

    En Italie, outre la figure de Leo Luca Orlando, le maire de Palerme, qui accorde régulièrement la « citoyenneté d’honneur » de sa ville aux dirigeants d’ONG pro-migrants et qui assimile les « cartes de séjours » et contrôles aux frontières à des « instruments de torture », l’ensemble de la gauche (hors le parti 5 étoiles allié de la Ligue), et surtout le parti démocrate, (PD), jouent cette carte de « l’illégalité légitime » et appuie les ONG anti-frontières. « Par nécessité, vous pouvez enfreindre la loi », ont déclaré aux membres de la Sea Watch les députés de gauche montés à bord du bateau Sea Watch 3 avant l’arrestation de Carole Rackete. Premier à être monté à bord du Sea Watch 3, l’élu du PD Graziano Delrio ose lancer : « Dans certains cas, vous ne pouvez pas respecter les lois et vous pouvez même au contraire, dans des cas de nécessité, enfreindre les lois. »

    Détail stupéfiant, les représentants du PD venus manifester leur solidarité avec la capitaine (étrangère) d’un navire (étranger) faisant le travail de passeurs / trafiquants d’êtres humains, n’ont pas même condamné ou regretté le fait que la « militante humanitaire Carole » a failli tuer les policiers de la vedette de la Guardia di Finanza qui bloquait le Sea Watch 3. Estimant qu’il ne pouvait manquer ce « coup médiatique » afin de complaire aux lobbies et médias immigrationnistes dominant, l’ex-Premier ministre (PD) Matteo Renzi était lui aussi sur le pont du Sea Watch 3 lorsque Carola Rackete a décidé de forcer le blocus. Avec lui, d’autres parlementaires de gauche (Matteo Orfini, Davide Faraone, Nicola Fratoianni et Riccardo Magi) ont carrément « béni » cette action illégale et violente qui a pourtant mis en danger les membres des forces de leur propre pays.

    Étaient également venus applaudir la capitaine allemande et son action illégale : le curé de Lampedusa, Don Carmelo La Magra ; l’ancien maire de l’île Giusi Nicolini, le médecin et député européen Pietro Bartolo, et le secrétaire local du parti PD Peppino Palmeri, lequel a déclaré pompeusement que « l’humanité a gagné, (…). Je pense que oui, nous devons être unis dans une fraternité universelle »… Plutôt que de respecter la légalité des lois approuvées démocratiquement par le Parlement de leur propre pays dont ils sont élus, ces représentants de la gauche ont accusé le gouvernement Ligue / 5 étoiles d’avoir « laissé au milieu de la mer pendant 16 jours un bateau qui avait besoin d’un refuge » (Matteo Orfini), alors qu’en réalité, sur les 53 migrants illégaux au départ présents sur le Sea Watch 3, onze avaient été débarqués en Italie en raison de leur état vulnérable, les autres étant nourris et auscultés par des médecins envoyés par l’Etat italien.

    Dès qu’elle est descendue du navire accompagnée des policiers italiens venus l’arrêter, Carola Rackete a été saluée par les ovations d’un groupe d’activistes ainsi que par le curé de la paroisse de Lampedusa, Carmelo La Magra, lequel dormait dans le cimetière de sa paroisse depuis une semaine « en signe de solidarité ». Rivalisant avec les plus virulents pro-migrants d’extrême-gauche, le curé de Lampedusa a exulté : « Noël vient quand il arrive. Bienvenue aux migrants à Porto Salvo di Lampedusa. » Le prêtre de l’église de San Gerlando di Lampedusa s’est ainsi joint à l’appel de l’Action catholique italienne « à permettre le débarquement immédiat des 42 personnes à bord du Sea Watch ».

    Au début du mois de mai dernier, lors de son voyage en Bulgarie, le Pape avait donné le ton et répondu ainsi à la politique des « ports fermés » de Matteo Salvini : « Ne fermez pas les portes à ceux qui frappent. Le monde des migrants et des réfugiés est la croix de l’humanité. » Preuve que les curés pro-migrants et l’Église catholique de plus en plus immigrationniste sont, comme la gauche anti-nationale post-ouvrière, totalement déconnectés des peuples et de leurs ouailles : rappelons qu’à Lampedusa la Ligue de Salvini est arrivée en tête avec 45 % des voix aux dernières élections européennes ; que plus de 65 % des Italiens (catholiques) approuvent ses lois et actions visant à combattre l’immigration clandestine ; et que le Pape François, certes populaire auprès des médias quand il défend les migrants, exaspère de plus en plus et a même rendu antipapistes des millions d’Italiens qui se sentent trahis par un souverain Pontife qui semble préférer les musulmans aux chrétiens et les Africains aux Européens. A tort ou à raison d’ailleurs.

    Il est vrai que la Sicile et en particulier Lampedusa sont plus que jamais en première ligne face à l’immigration clandestine : rien que pendant les deux dernières semaines durant lesquelles le Sea Watch est resté bloqué au large de l’île, Lampedusa a assisté impuissante, malgré la politique des « ports fermés » de Matteo Salvini et de son nouveau « décret sécurité », plus de 200 clandestins (majoritairement tunisiens et aucunement des « réfugiés » politiques syriens) acheminés par des barques de fortunes plus difficiles à repérer que les navires des ONG. Depuis des années, la ville est littéralement défigurée, l’arrivée de migrants entraînant des faits quotidiens de violences, d’agressions, de vols et destructions de commerces.

    Malgré cela, le médiatique curé de Lampedusa, grand adepte du pape François, martèle qu’il faut « accueillir, protéger, promouvoir et intégrer les migrants et les réfugiés ». Dans une autre ville de Sicile, Noto, où nous nous sommes rendus le 27 juin dernier, une immense croix en bois a été construite à partir de morceaux d’une embarcation de migrants et a été carrément érigée dans l’entrée de la plus grande église du centre-ville. A Catania, ville très catholique-conservatrice et de droite – où se déroule chaque année début février la troisième plus grande fête chrétienne au monde, la Santa Agata – la cathédrale a été prise d’assauts par des sit-in pro-migrants en défense de Carola Rackete et de la Sea Watch.

    Quant à Palerme, l’alliance entre l’Église catholique et le maire de la Ville, Leo Luca Orlando, chef de file de la lutte contre la politique migratoire de Matteo Salvini, est totale, alors même que Orlando est un anticlérical patenté à la fois islamophile et pro-LGBT. Sa dernière trouvaille a consisté à proposer d’éliminer le terme même de « migrant », puisque « nous sommes tous des personnes ». D’après lui, le terme « migrants » devrait être supprimé, tout comme la gauche a réussi à faire supprimer celui de « clandestin », remplacé dans le jargon journalistique par celui, trompeur, mais plus valorisant, de « migrant ». Cette manipulation sémantique visant à abolir la distinction migrant régulier / illégal est également très présente dans le pacte de Marrakech des Nations-unies.

    Récemment, à l’occasion de la rupture du jeûne du ramadan, le médiatique maire palermitain s’est affiché en train de prier avec une assemblée de musulmans, consacrant même une « journée consacrée à l’islam » en rappelant le « glorieux passé arabo-islamique » de la Sicile (en réalité envahie et libérée deux siècles plus tard par les Normands). Orlando utilise lui aussi à merveille l’arme de la culpabilisation lorsqu’il ne cesse de justifier l’immigration illimitée au nom du fait que les Siciliens « ont eu eux aussi des grands-parents qui ont décidé d’aller vivre dans un autre pays en demandant à être considérés comme des personnes humaines ». Bref, « on est tous des migrants ». Une musique bien connue aussi en France.

    A chaque nouvelle affaire de blocage de bateaux d’ONG pro-migrants par les autorités italiennes obéissant à la politique de la Ligue, le maire de Palerme se déclare prêt à accueillir des navires dans le port de Palerme. Lors de notre visite, le 26 juin dernier, Orlando nous a d’ailleurs remis une brochure consacrée à l’accueil des migrants, « chez eux chez nous ». Comme le Pape ou l’ex-maire de Lampedusa, Leoluca Orlando est depuis quelques années tellement obsédé par « l’impératif d’accueil » des migrants, alors que la Sicile connaît encore une grande pauvreté et un chômage de masse, qu’il suscite une réaction de rejet et d’exaspération, d’autant que de nombreuses initiatives en faveur des migrants sont financées par des citoyens italiens-siciliens hyper-taxés et précarisés.

    Le 28 juin, lorsque nous avons parlé de la question migratoire au maire de la seconde ville de Sicile, Catania, Salvatore Pogliese, ex-membre d’Alleanza nazionale élu député européen et maire sous les couleurs de Forza Italia, celui-ci nous confiait qu’il jugeait absurdes et extrêmes les vues du maire de Palerme ou du curé de Lampedusa. Et il rappelait que lorsque des maires pro-migrants jouent aux « héros » en réclamant l’ouverture sans limites des ports pour accueillir les « réfugiés » du monde entier, ils mentent puisque l’ouverture des ports relève, comme en France, non pas des maires, mais de l’Etat central (ministères des Transports et de l’Intérieur).

    Une autre alliance de forces « progressistes » / pro-migrants n’a pas manqué de surprendre les analystes de la vie politique italienne, notamment à l’occasion de la Gay Pride, organisée à Milan le 28 juin, par le maire de gauche, Beppe Sala, champion de la « diversité » et des minorités en tout genre : l’alliance de la gauche et des multinationales et des Gafam. C’est ainsi que certains journaux italiens de droite ont relevé le fait que les sponsors de la Gay Pride, officiellement indiqués sur le site de l’événement – Google, Microsoft, eBay, Coca-Cola, PayPal, RedBull, Durex, Benetton, etc. – ont tenu et obtenu que soient associées à la cause des gays celle des migrants afin de « prendre en compte toutes les différences, pas seulement liées à l’identité et à l’orientation sexuelle (immigration, handicap, appartenance ethnique, etc.) ».

    Les « migrants » illégaux et autres faux réfugiés secourus par les ONG immigrationnistes, adeptes des « ports ouverts », ont donc eu droit à un traitement de faveur et ont pu officiellement venir « exprimer toute sa solidarité avec le capitaine du navire (Sea Watch 3) Carola Rackete, avec les membres de l’équipage et avec toutes les personnes à bord », écrit sur Facebook « Ensemble sans murs », qui « participera avec enthousiasme au défilé de mode de Milan ». L’idéologie diversitaire est si puissante, et l’accueil des migrants est tellement devenu la « cause des causes » capable de surpasser les autres, qu’elle s’invite même chez les lobbies LGBT, pourtant la « minorité » la plus directement persécutée – avec les juifs – par l’islamisme.

    Or, une grande majorité d’immigrés clandestins est de confession musulmane : Subsahariens, Erythréens, Soudanais, Égyptiens, Syriens, Turcs, Maghrébins ou Pakistanais et Afghans qui émigrent en masse dans la Vieille Europe de façon tant légale (regroupement familial, migrations économiques, visas étudiants, mineurs non-accompagnés…) qu’illégale.

    Pour bien comprendre « d’où parlent » les défenseurs des migrants clandestins qui ne cessent d’apostropher Victor Orban, Matteo Salvini ou encore le « diable en chef » Donald Trump pour leurs politiques de contrôle de l’immigration, il suffit de constater le deux poids deux mesures et l’indignation sélective de la gauche et de l’Église catholique qui dénoncent les « populistes européens xénophobes / islamophobes / racistes » mais très peu le néo-Sultan Erdogan et encore moins les pays d’Afrique, du Maghreb, d’Amérique latine ou d’Asie qui répriment extrêmement sévèrement et violemment l’immigration clandestine et / ou l’islamisme.

    Deux exemples flagrants suffiront à s’en convaincre : l’ONU a récemment condamné « l’islamophobie » européenne et occidentale, notamment de la France et de l’Italie, mais pas les massacres de masse de musulmans en Chine ou en Inde. Ensuite, le 5 septembre 2018, lorsque la marine marocaine a fait tirer sur une embarcation de migrants clandestins, faisant un mort et un blessé grave, puis fait arrêter le capitaine espagnol du bateau, l’ONU n’a pas bronché. Pas plus dans de nombreux cas de mauvais traitements, persécutions de migrants subsahariens ou de chrétiens dans l’ensemble des pays d’Afrique du Nord et arabes.

    Les Etats européens et les « militants » antifascistes hostiles aux « populistes » n’ont pas manifesté la moindre indignation face à ces phénomènes récurrents. Pas plus que les antiracistes français et leurs alliés féministes et pro-LGBT ne dénoncent la misogynie et l’homophobie islamiques, de facto exonérées par primat xénophile et auto-racisme anti-occidental. Ce dernier exemple est significatif : loin de se laisser culpabiliser, les autorités marocaines ont pourtant assumé le fait qu’une « unité de combat de la Marine royale » a ouvert le feu sur l’embarcation (un « go-fast » léger) en tuant une passagère. Comme Carola Rackete, le capitaine de la vedette de clandestins n’avait pas obéi aux ordres des militaires marocains l’intimant de stopper sa course.

    Morale de l’histoire : l’immigrationnisme des ONG comme la Sea Watch et autres « No Borders » est – comme l’antiracisme à sens unique – une arme subversive tournée contre les seuls peuples blancs-judéo-chrétiens-occidentaux et leurs Etats-Nations souverains. D’évidence, les forces cosmopolitiquement correctes (gauche internationaliste-marxiste ; libéraux-multiculturalistes ; multinationales / Mc Word ; Église catholique ; fédéralistes européens et autres instances onusiennes) veulent détruire en premier lieu les vieilles nations européennes culpabilisées et vieillissantes, sorte de terra nullius en devenir conçue comme le laboratoire de leurs projets néo-impériaux / mondialistes respectifs.

    Ces différentes forces ne sont pas amies, mais elles convergent dans un même projet de destruction des Etats-souverains occidentaux. Voilà d’où parlent les No Borders. Et à l’aune de ce constat, le fait que le milliardaire Soros et les multinationales précitées sponsorisent des opérations pro-migrants, pourtant exécutées par des ONG et forces de gauche et d’extrême-gauche ou chrétiennes / tiersmondistes, en dit long sur la convergence des forces cosmopolitiquement correctes hostiles à l’Etat-Nation et à la défense de l’identité occidentale.

    https://www.valeursactuelles.com/monde/comment-les-lobbies-immigrationnistes-utilisent-la-cause-des-migrants-pour-diaboliser-lidentite-nationale-et-loccident-108564

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  4. jcdurbant dit :

    WHAT OBAMA SLAVING PAST ? (Guess whose family like George Washington once owned slaves ?)

    Obama’s ancestors on his white mother’s side appear to have been slave owners. William Reitwiesner, an amateur genealogical researcher, has published a history of Obama’s mother’s family and discovered that her ancestors have a distinctly shadowy past. Reitwiesner traced Obama’s great-great-great-great-grandfather, George Washington Overall, and found that he owned two slaves in Kentucky: a 15-year-old girl and a 25-year-old man. He also found out that Obama’s great-great-great-great-great-grandmother, Mary Duvall, also owned a pair of slaves listed in an 1850 census record. They were a 60-year-old man and a 58-year-old woman. In fact, the Duvalls were a wealthy family whose members were descended from a major landowner, Maureen Duvall, whose estate owned at least 18 slaves in the 17th century. The news comes at a time when Obama is engaged in a fierce battle with Senator Hillary Clinton to woo black voters in their bids to get the Democratic presidential nomination. It also comes ahead of appearances by both Clinton and Obama today in Selma, Alabama, to mark the anniversary of a famous 1965 civil rights march. This is hardly the best time to be exposed as the descendant of slave owners.

    Reitwiesner has posted his research, which he warns is a ‘first draft’, on his website, wargs.com. However, the news is unlikely to be a serious political problem for Obama, despite the fact that some black commentators have accused him of not being a real black American. Nor is he likely to be alone in finding out that his white ancestors once owned the ancestors of his fellow black Americans. America, like Britain, is caught in the grip of a frenzy of genealogical research. Dozens of websites have sprung up, allowing fast and easy access to all sorts of historical records and prompting many Americans to research their family trees.

    That can throw up some very surprising results. In fact, last week Obama was not even the only black politician to find out some unusual personal history. The civil rights campaigner, the Reverend Al Sharpton was stunned to discover his slave ancestors were owned by the late politician Strom Thurmond, who once ran for President on a staunchly racist segregationist platform. The pair might even be related. The news prompted Sharpton to issue a statement about his private agony at the revelation. ‘Words cannot fully describe the feelings I had when I learned the awful truth. Not only I am the descendant of slaves, but my family had to endure the particular agony of being slaves to the Thurmonds.’

    Obama’s campaign team have handled the news of his family’s slaving past a bit more casually and a lot less emotionally, issuing a statement saying such a family background was ‘representative of America’. That is certainly true. Slavery was the economic bedrock of the American economy in the South before the Civil War. It would come as no surprise that anyone tracing their family roots back to the pre-war South would find that his descendants had owned slaves.

    But more edifying discoveries can come from looking at the past too. Another of Obama’s ancestors, his great-great-great-grandfather, Christopher Columbus Clark, fought for the Union army in the Civil War. As a result Obama can also lay claim to relatives who risked their lives to end slavery. ‘While a relative owned slaves, another fought for the Union,’ said Obama spokesman Bill Burton in a statement. Perhaps it is just another case of Obama’s complex past showing that he can have it both ways.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2007/mar/04/uselections2008.barackobama

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  5. jcdurbant dit :

    WHAT OBAMA SLAVE OWNER TIES ?

    President Obama is the 11th great-grandson of John Punch, a black man who came to America in the 1600s as an indentured servant and was enslaved for life in 1640 after trying to escape his servitude, according to a two-year Ancestry.com study of thousands of records from colonial Virginia. Although Obama’s father was a black man from Kenya, his ties to slavery stem instead from his white mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, Harman said. The enslaved, black Punch had children with a free white woman. Because their mother was free, Punch’s mixed-race kids were born free and went on to become « prominent » land owners in Virginia, Harman said. The Ancestry.com historian said Obama’s family tree is one of the « most fascinating » on which she has ever worked because it is « dynamic » and stretches across at least three continents. While few records remain about Obama’s father’s side of the family, his mother’s side ranges « from prominent land owners to people fleeing the Irish potato famine to indentured servants, » Harman said.

    Obama also has polygamy in his family history. His dad, Barack Obama Sr., descended from the Luo tribe in Kenya where polygamy was common. Obama’s grandfather had at least four wives and his great-grandfather had five, the Washington Post’s David Maraniss reported.

    But while polygamy persists in both presidential contenders’ pasts, Harman said, only Obama’s ancestors have yet been traced back to slavery. Besides his tie to the enslaved Punch, Obama’s family tree included slave owners, as well. Obama’s great-great-great-great grandfather George Washington Overall owned two slaves, a Baltimore Sun study found, based on 1850 census records…

    https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/OTUS/obama-romney-family-trees-hold-slaves-british-countryfolk/story?id=16889505

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  6. jcdurbant dit :

    WHAT OBAMA SLAVING PAST ?

    « I find myself once again in the same position as President Obama. We both oppose reparations and we both are the descendants of slave owners. »

    Mitch McConnell

    « I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago, when none of us currently living are responsible, is a good idea. We’ve tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a civil war, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We’ve elected an African American president. »

    Mitch McConnell

    McConnell did not say whether he knew that his two great-great-grandfathers owned slaves prior to an NBC News report published Monday. The majority leader’s great-great-grandfathers, James McConnell and Richard Daley, owned a total of at least 14 slaves in Limestone County, Alabama — all but two of them female, according to the county « Slave Schedules » in the 1850 and the 1860 censuses.

    The details about McConnell’s ancestors, discovered by NBC News through a search of ancestry and census records, came in the wake of recent hearings on reparations before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

    Asked about the reparations issue a few weeks ago, McConnell told reporters that he was opposed to the idea, arguing it would be hard to figure out whom to compensate.

    During the 2008 election, an amateur genealogist found that on his white mother’s side, Obama had a great-great-great-grandfather named George Washington Overall who owned two male slaves in Kentucky. The genealogist, William Reitwiesner, also found that Obama’s great-great-great-great-great-grandmother, Mary Duvall, also owned a pair of slaves.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/mcconnell-likens-himself-obama-we-both-are-descendants-slave-owners-n1027921

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