History of Slavery and BLM movement


Sage Sherburne, Herald Writer

What is the confederacy? The Confederate States of America commonly referred to as the Confederate States or simply the Confederacy was an unrecognized herrenvolk republic in North America that existed from February 8, 1861, to May 9, 1865. Slavery ended on June 19th, 1865, or Juneteenth. It is now a national holiday for all, but mostly black people. A lot of people like to say that we’ve come a long way from 60 years ago. Whenever I hear that, I wonder if what they are seeing is the same thing that I’m seeing. Sixty years ago, the police did not get arrested for their unjust actions. It was basically their job to keep the streets safe for white people and black people had to be taught a “lesson.” Now, if I go to a peaceful protest, we don’t get hosed down and beaten. We don’t get tackled hard and tortured. Unfortunately, police officers do show up in riot gear and tear gas us. One side is not willing to see us as equal.

Slavery: Throughout both the 17th and 18th centuries, Africans were being brought to the United States of America. It is really funny that the United States of America is called the “United” but we’re not “United.” That seems a little misleading. Historically, Africans were forced to work as indentured servants and labor away in the hot sun and cold weathers. They worked in fields picking cotton, sugar and tobacco. American colonies exploited these people for their own gain. But by the mid-19 century, things got really bad. America’s westward expansion and the abolition provoked a great debate over slavery, which would eventually tear the nation apart in a bloody, bloody civil war. Thankfully, there was a happy ending. The nation freed the 4 million enslaved African people. It did take some time to reach everyone, hence why we have Juneteenth, to commemorate the freedom of Africans. The ending can also be considered not so happy. The legacy of slavery continued to influence American history from the Reconstruction to the Civil Rights Movement that emerged a century later.

The Confederacy: The flag that the Confederacy represents is racially motivated hared.. It’s super popular among white supremacist and southerner who claims it as their heritage. Important to note that for a long time the confederate flag was hanging in the state of Georgia on the 12th of April 1861 until the 9th of April 1865. The Civil War was fought by the United States of America and the Confederate States of America. Eleven southern states seceded from the Union from 1860-61. In doing so, they made their own government and lived separate lives. This went through three iterations before they settled on the red banner, the St. Andrew Cross, and 13 white stars that we see and know today. This flag flew through many Confederate armies including the one led by Robert E. Lee who fought to protect slavery as an institution. The Confederacy began as seven Deep South states including Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, Mississippi, Florida, South Carolina, and Texas. By the time the war started, Arkansas, Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina joined. The Confederacy was headed by the President and Vice president at the time. President Jefferson Davis and Vice President Alexander H. Stephens. Did you know that the state guard of honor in Mississippi Jackson on the first of July 2020 finally retired their Confederate flag? The only reason the Confederacy moved away from the United States was after the election of Abraham Lincoln in which he threated their rights to have slaves, in 1860. The whole war was surrounded by slavery. People saw slaves as an integral part of their economy. For many Americans, the flag symbolizes, torture, oppression and terror. In the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement, statues of those historical figures involved in the slave trade such as Edward Colston and Robert Milligan are being torn down across the globe.

Black Lives Matter: In 1955, a boy named Emmett Till died brutally, to the point that he was unrecognizable. His death started a nation wide Civil Rights movement. And then in 2015, a woman in her 20s was found lynched in her jail cell, sparking the Black lives Matter movement. Although these deaths are from different years and different generations, they all sparked an awakening in American history that many have forgotten. Issues were exposed, and yet they are still occurring. People who are not directly affected tend to look the other way. Black people are scared, afraid and paranoid. People don’t realize how scared they are. I have never had a problem with the police, and yet I still get scared when I see one. People don’t realize how traumatizing it is to see a police officer wearing a blue mask. Will he choose his career over the black kids he’s meant to protect? People want us to move on and forget, but can you forget the Holocaust or World Wars I and II? Without Black people, you would never have had a black President. People abuse, hurt and oppress us until we get caught and killed and then phrases are stated such as, “I’m sorry for the pain” but an “I’m sorry.” However, these will never be enough. People need to be held accountable for their deadly actions toward black individuals. 

Slavery is over and ended many years ago. Black people are trying to live their lives and not have to worry about getting killed. We’re black and we are no different than other races. God didn’t create us with the main goal of disliking each other. He made us with the main goal of loving each other. 

“Dear Black People, Stop looking for the validation or acceptance from a system that is systemically designed to keep you at the bottom. Stop looking for inclusion but focus on the future, when we come together there is no limit to what we can accomplish.” – The Black Detour