Slavery and the Making of America
This first series on “Slavery and the Making of America” provided information on slavery that was very contrary to what the belief held by many on how oppression and forced labor on African Americans started - Slavery and the Making of America introduction. In mainstream America, well, what I grew up believing was that slave owners needed laborers and as a result used their resources and the naivety of Africans to buy off slaves from the motherland and force them into servitude.
Never in my history classes has the mention of indentured servitude been mentioned and this is the first time I witnessed how slavery resulted as a result of discriminatory justice and lawmaking. My first impression after viewing this film was actually a reflection of how ignorant I have been on how slavery began. I think that the producers of this documentary did a great job providing information that many may not come across from reading text books.
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The History classes I have taken usually give an account of the progression of America from the mid to late 1600s. This neglects a very crucial part of the makeup of this great Nation, the origins of slavery. Additionally, I think that it was very important to demonstrate how the first slaves had lived in harmony with other indentured servants of Caucasian descent by virtue that they were serving a common master and had similar goals for themselves and their children.
This same idea should be applied today by all mankind as we strive to be a united America not merely a collection of races. Many lessons can be garnered from the information provided in this film but I think the most important is prevention of history from repeating itself. Today, although to a very subtle degree, the same judicial oppression that began initial slavery in the United States can be observed in the correction system.
I try to avoid appearing cynical but I strongly believe that many African American males in society are detained at a higher frequency than their Caucasian counterparts for the same degree of felony or misdemeanor. As a result of this, many minorities grow up in fatherless homes having no male figures to look up to and consequently are subjected to the same system ultimately resulting in de facto slavery. Until these loopholes are fixed in the justice system, slavery will continue to exist in America.