There has been a position put out in recent years to apologize to Americans that are black. The apology is supposedly for the years that they spent in slavery. The time for this apology has long since passed. There are no former slaves left alive. President Lincoln emancipated the slaves during the civil war. That was over 140 years ago.
If symbolism is what they want to do, then we ought to be honoring the slaves all the way back to the founding of this country. The slaves from the onset of our country unwillingly gave up their right to the freedoms that our forefathers were fighting. It was decided during the debating of whether or not our forefathers would sign the newly created Declaration of Independence. Items were stripped, wording was changed in the Declaration before it was passed and signed.
The largest debate was regarding slavery. The Southern colonies would not sign the Declaration of Independence if the slaves were freed. It was already decided that for the Declaration of Independence to mean anything, that there was to be no colonies voting against the Declaration. It had to be unanimous. Compromise had to be made regarding the slaves. The one item that would hold it up was slavery. To create this new country, despite many arguments against slavery, slavery had to be kept alive to have the southern colonies agree to it.
During the war, slaves fought for and against the British. The ones that fought for the British were voting for life to continue as is. Those that fought against the British for the Patriots of the new country were in some way voting for the hope of freedom one day.
None of those slaves, nor the ones following the revolution, nor the ones that were alive during the Civil War are alive any longer. An apology really has no meaning because they aren’t here to accept or decline the apology.
However, those slaves may be honored. A way of saying thank you for their sacrifice in forming this country. Without their contribution of slavery (despite their not having a say in that sacrifice) this country would not have been formed.
There were many black Americans that made contributions to this country. In battle as well as in other ways, but they all made a sacrifice for the freedoms we now enjoy as Americans. For that, we should be honoring them. The role they played made them founding fathers as well as John Hancock, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and the rest.
We should be proud that we corrected the slavery problem by President Lincoln and Americans of the 1860’s freeing the slaves. Men, women and children all sacrificed for this country by their enslavement. Americans corrected the mistake of slavery by setting them free and we should be proud of that. Honoring the slaves for the sacrifices they made to this country makes more sense than trying to apologize to people that have been dead for so many years. By honoring their sacrifice, we are giving them a huge THANK YOU for their sacrifice that went for another near 90 years following the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Their contribution was as great in deed and greater in labor and we should thank them by honoring their memory.
I welcome your comments.