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The legacy of slavery: Wholistic approach

If the strongest was always right, the concept of human rights would be meaningless

Rousseau

I asked a friend who happens to be a black woman from the Caribbean what she thought the legacy of slavery would be. Will those with that look like claim to have been oppressed by this economic-political tool demand restitution, and what would it be?

She told me in her wise, open minded way that it was a question difficult to fathom, let alone answer in a singular fashion. It sure is complex, and in its complexity the answer may be found.

Many within our present day society want financial-social-political restitution, or perhaps a heartfelt apology on behalf of multiple societies that used the tool of slavery all over the world.

Slavery, as a business enterprise, became most significant in The Americas and Africa during modern times.

Africa was the source of raw materials, a transport system was devised attempting to lose as little merchandise as possible during the long trips, and in the Americas and Caribbean and beyond a system was devised to monetise humans.

Not a new idea though, for humanity has since time memorial enslaved others for the similar purpose.

Defeated tribes, communities and armies were enslaved, ransomed and sold at auction for over a thousand years.

The Great Empires of the world engaged and perfected various forms of slavery. Roman, Greek, Egyptian, Persian, Chinese, Babylonian and Mongol Officers received wages along with a fresh new crop of prisoners.

Slavery was so effectively managed that at one time Rome’s population was over 40% slaves. Armies of slaves dug the mines for ore, laboured in the fields, households and brothels too.

Ownership of slaves became a generational matter as well. With each child born in captivity a new generation of slaves filled the roles, and this generational process went on hundreds of years.

While the slave traders of Europe were forced to detach themselves from direct participation in slavery during the 18th century their hands remained in this trade to this very day. The smuggling, traffic and enslavement of humans is big business today all over the world, and it is not so far from your neighbourhood as well.

Perhaps your neighbour has a woman from Asia, North Africa, Latin America who is said to work for them as a house cleaner, babysitter, maid, when in fact that person is enslaved within the home, paying off huge debts to the captors (family).

That woman was smuggled into your town and sold to this family, or perhaps they were brought to your community, and told they’d receive education and a good paying job, only to be forced into servitude to pay off a debt never to be paid.

Ladies and boys found in massage parlors could be slaves as well. The locals – a den of people could be enslaved by a pimp, and used for the sex trade. Do you know which country has the most slaves today? China followed by Saudi Arabia.

Chinese Authorities have millions of “political-social deviants” to re-educate and punish for their criminality. They build bridges, fill industrial plants each day, sacrifice their body parts in the Chinese illegal organ trade, along with North Korea provide Russia over a million labourers in Siberia’s forest and mining trades.

A young daughter living in a modern society, trapped by her parents -community standards, expectations and demands. Do as you are told or else!

Slavery is everywhere, in each nation, region and town where greed surpasses the need for freedom, equality and justice. It lies in the shadows, or out in the open for all to recognise and see, but often not acted upon.

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Do you know why China, Pakistan, India can make so many items cheaply? Yup, mass slavery enforced and used by business and governmental authorities for the benefit of foreign trade.

I sympathise with the Black Community for their efforts to demand justice for this legacy of slavery, and demand restitution as well. If you ever were a victim of abuse, assault or pressured to do something you did not want to do, you may know what it is like to be a slave.

Slavery is universal, a part of our social condition that needs to be recognised, ended and those who prey upon others imprisoned (prison is too good for these people).

What possible restitution can those enslaved and their generational families desire, need and require?

Transparency: Recognise those victims, what industries they are a part of and let the world know who, what and where these predators exist! Stop buying these nations or corporation items, embargo and protest.

These predators exist to make profit, so stop buying from them.

Restitution: Protect these Victims, wherever they may be, true refugees. Those who run from oppression must be assisted. That means not just the foreign victim, but the person abused by a partner, pimp or drug dealer.

Civilised Society must end slavery. This will be difficult, since mere addiction is enslavement, so if you are addicted to purchasing online items, eating too much, consuming what is not good for you then you are a slave to that item.

Enslavement can be found everywhere. Education, treatment of victims will be real life ways to give back to those injured.

Accountability: The only thing Chinese Authorities do that receives my approval is how they end the lives of those criminals viewed as unsaveable, a shot to the back of the head (my opinion) The responsible actors in this development and growth of slavery must be globally identified and persecuted.

Justice must be a fulfilling process where victims know, feel and accept the punishment these transgressors must face. The Acquisition of POWER and PROFITS!

That is the initiator for these horrible people, corporations, nations, cultural systems. Take it from them and change the dynamic. Force them into the shadows, and then put a light onto their hiding places.

The Media has an obligation to investigate, bring to light wrongdoing, and assist the community in their efforts to end all forms of slavery.

Do those wronged want money or status as restitution, or do they want a simple form of justice? Truth and reconciliation after the fall of apartheid in South Africa progressed towards revelation of crimes, gathering both plaintiff and criminal to a court of justice, and seeking justice in whatever form it would be.

Whether a lowly or high born person, justice must be sought and criminality ended. He who enslaves once, will do so again, just as 57% of violent offenders will offend again.

Sometimes a crime is so horrible that punishment should be a lifelong form of character changing education, service and punishment.

As long as people can exert undue pressure upon another, with individual and political forces forcing a person to do what they would never think of doing, justice must face the challenge head on, and end a cycle as old as humanity itself.

Steven Kaszab
Bradford, Ontario