What in the hell is going on!? Life is amazing to me but the more you grow and the more you learn, the weirder life becomes. So, as I have gotten older, I have wanted to understand more and therefore I am asking more questions. I love history and all great historical events and American slavery has always been fascinating to me, and for many different reasons. The main reason is that I am black and I was born in America. I wanted to know how my ancestors were treated and why and how slavery began. All of it has never made great sense to me but life makes no damn sense to me. Why wasn’t there a huge rebellion from all slaves, why were Africans chosen to be slaves in America, why so much hatred towards a race of people? Those questions are somewhat rhetorical, but I would love to dive into the brains of the people that started this American tragedy.
One thing that was and still is hard to understand for me, is why black people kept practicing the same religion that was forced upon them by their masters? I wouldn’t have wanted to have anything to do with any of their beliefs or customs once I was free. Black’s adopted everything that was presented to them and never really thought to create their own beliefs and traditions. I do not fault blacks for just adopting what was given to them, as they did not have any resources to research and create their own customs and beliefs. The one tool that black people decided to keep and make a staple in their lives is the “Holy Bible”. I am not a bible reader now and never will be. I respect people and their religious beliefs but I have decided not to practice any religion at all. I believe there is a God, but I will not practice a certain religion and that is just my choice. I have watched the film “Birth of a Nation” several times but the most significant part I ignored, was the fact that Nat Turner was reciting passages from the Holy Bible with reference to slavery. Nat Turner was categorized as a “Nigger Preacher”. This nigger preacher was to go to different plantations and preach to the niggers. These scriptures were being being read to control the niggers and give them guidance to obey their master. The master wanted them to know that they should obey not only his word but the word of the “Holy Bible”.
I decided to read some passages in the bible to see if there is scripture that condones slavery at all and these two caught me off guard. Exodus Chapter 21, verse 20: “If a man beats his male or female slave with a rod and the slave dies as a direct result, he must be punished, but he is not to be punished if the slave gets up after a day or two, since the slave is his property”. Leviticus Chapter 25, verse 44: “Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and the members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. You can will them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelities ruthlessly”. There are more passages in the bible that seem to be fine with slavery.
Reading those two scriptures then made me call my Christian Aunt to get a better understanding of biblical slavery. She then tells me that it’s a different type of slavery in the bible compared to the slavery that happened in America. Slavery in America was brutal and harmful, but the slavery referenced in the bible is not brutal and harmful, and according to the laws of the bible the owners were not allowed to mistreat the slaves. The definition of a slave according to the dictionary is: a person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them. No human being should be the property of another human being, regardless of how the owner treats the slave. THERE IS NO EXCEPTION!!! Slavery shouldn’t have ever existed and should never be practiced today and in the future. There is no difference in American slavery and the Biblical slavery, in my opinion from what I have read. The fact that a person can own another person makes me sick to my stomach. All people should have been free to choose as they should and if they wanted to be servants, then that is a different story. Servants have a choice to do as they shall and this means they can quit and no longer work for their employer if that is what they want to do. Slaves on the other hand, don’t have many choices for themselves. The bible is an amazing book but why did black Americans adopt this tool and carry it on to help and teach others. It was never used for good intent with our ancestors by the masters that allowed us to have them and read from them. There is a reason why religion was given to us initially and it was for control and guidance of the slave owners rules and regulations.