Ron Rosenbaum

How is Our America Unrepentant About Slavery?

That’s the question this commmenter asks.

First he quotes my last post:

“With our shameful, still-unrepented-for history of slavery and segregation we didn’t deseve them, but they offered us a chance for at least partial redemption, and to our credit we took it.”

Then he offers:

How is America unprepentant about slavery?  This is the kind of divisive rhetoric one would expect from race hustlers like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton  and Spike Lee.  In 233 years, this country, warts and all, has become a shining example for the rest of the world when it comes to tolerance.  I’ve been to the Middle East where slavery still exists, both indentured servitude and actual slavery where the Arabs OWN black people.  And then there is Europe which is now reprising those heady days of pogroms and Jew-baiting of the 1930’s.

Martin Luther King said that we should judge a man not by the color of his skin but by the content of his character. Sadly, Obama is the perfect example of just the opposite– and is exactly what a gullible and white-guilt ridden electorate has done.  Bravo.”

To which I’d say:

Okay since you evince little more than a grade school education: Slavery was not abolished completely until 1865, some 145 years ago. So a good part of the 233 years you celebrate uncritically, the law and the much-worshipped Constitution were devoted to upholding a system of wretched and murderous human bondage, that any human being with any fellow-feeling should feel deeply ashamed of and repentant about regardless of whether it still obtains legally now, but which you seem to regard as just a “wart”. Our great wealth that our “shining example” was built upon was built upon the backs of slave labor. You’re proud of that? Then I feel sorry for you.

And then for more than 100 years after official slavery was abolished, official state-enforced racism under the name of segregation and Jim Crow laws insured vicious mistreatment of all those who survived slavery and their descendants. Unrepentant about that? Shame on you. And then while segregation has been abolished legally, and racism diminished over time, as bigots die off, people who cared about civil rights and the feelings of others still have had to listen to the smug self-congratulatory words of the ignorant. On a day like this you should be ashamed of yourself, but you’re probably too busy patting yourself on the back for your world travels which have clearly brought you no wisdom or tolerance.