Thursday, January 10, 2013

Django won't tell you (nor will Lincoln)

Although two movies centered around American slavery were nominated today for "best picture" Oscars, neither will give you the "big picture" about that system. Imara Jones alludes to what Django Unchained "won't tell you" in her recent Colorlines article, but her observations quoted below equally apply to Lincoln.

1) Slavery laid the foundation for the modern international economic system.
2) Africans’ economic skills were a leading reason for their enslavement.
3) African know-how transformed slave economies into some of the wealthiest on the planet.
4) Until it was destroyed by the Civil War, slavery made the American South the richest and most powerful region in America.
5) Defense of slavery, more than taxes, was pivotal to America’s declaration of independence.
6) The brutalization and psychological torture of slaves was designed to ensure that plantations stayed in the black financially.
7) The economic success of former slaves during Reconstruction led to the rise of the Ku Klux Klan. 
8) The desire to maintain economic oppression is why the South was one of the most anti-tax regions of the nation. 
9) Many firms on Wall Street made fortunes from funding the slave trade.
10) The wealth gap between whites and blacks, the result of slavery, has yet to be closed.

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