Disturbing parallels

Senator James Henry Hammond, speech before the Senate, 1858:

In all social systems there must be a class to do the menial duties, to perform the drudgery of life. That is, a class requiring but a low order of intellect and but little skill. Its requisites are vigor, docility, fidelity. Such a class you must have, or you would not have that other class which leads progress, civilization, and refinement. It constitutes the very mud-sill of society and of political government; and you might as well attempt to build a house in the air, as to build either the one or the other, except on this mud-sill. Fortunately for the South, she found a race adapted to that purpose to her hand. A race inferior to her own, but eminently qualified in temper, in vigor, in docility, in capacity to stand the climate, to answer all her purposes. We use them for our purpose, and call them slaves. We found them slaves by the common “consent of mankind,” which, according to Cicero, “lex naturae est.” The highest proof of what is Nature’s law. We are old-fashioned at the South yet; slave is a word discarded now by “ears polite;” I will not characterize that class at the North by that term; but you have it; it is there; it is everywhere; it is eternal.

A. Edwin Wilson, “The Sons of Noah,” 1950s (re-published 1981):

In the curse (Gen. 9:24-27) pronounced by God through Noah (called by God “a preacher of righteousness,” II Pet. 2:5), the descendants of Ham became the servile nations of the world. God pronounced the blessing upon Shem, that he was to be the channel of spiritual blessings to the world, and a blessing upon Japheth, that from him were to come the explorers, colonizers, and developers — those who would possess the whole of the earth. There is no equality on the earth among men, there will be no equality among them during the millennium, neither will there be equality among them during eternity.

© 2009, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.

4 thoughts on “Disturbing parallels

  1. Honestly, would it be evil to suggest maybe the senator was right? I don’t support bringing back slavery, but a lot of what he says makes sence. Didn’t a famous slave actually say slavery was good to the African people. Now, I don’t believe Bro. Wilson supported slavery, but he was right bout the place of black people. Say I’m racist or whatever, but that’s how I read it.

  2. Just when I think I’m wasting my time writing about the Hamitic curse, Jim, you come along. I don’t doubt your sincerity, but your understanding of the subject is steeped in ignorance.

    First, the “famous slave” you’re referring to is most likely Booker T. Washington. His idea, however, was that through a great evil came a great good, namely, slaves came to know Christ. That’s an interesting perspective, but I’m not sure I agree with him on this point. More importantly, however, Washington was attempting to bring the African “up from slavery.” I believe he held that whatever good purpose slavery served was incomplete without the intellectual and social improvement of blacks in America. Washington was pushing for eventual equality.

    Second, most of the slaves captured in Africa never made it to America. More than half were simply dumped into the sea. Of the remaining, on a remnant made it to the United States. Of them, only a few became Christian. That slavery could serve as a substitute for missionary work is vulgar.

    Third, slaves were not content. Read Frederick Douglass’s “Interesting Narrative of an American Slave.” Their “happy” songs were lamentations.

    Link: http://etext.virginia.edu/toc/modeng/public/DouNarr.html

  3. I meant the senator’s words were right in his day. Not about slavery. About blacks. An honest person would say that’s true. I read most of Bro. Wilson’s book and I didn’t find anything shocking in it. He said some unpopular things, but truth telling men are ofent unpopular. I’m just saying people should keep an open mind about these things instead of calling everyone evil or something.

  4. Jim, you ought to seriously consider that these men were wrong on race. Do you really understand what it is you’re defending?

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