Stand Your Ground Summary

Superior Essays
As Kelly Brown Douglas notes in her book Stand Your Ground, one of reasons for perpetuating slavery after the other Western European countries abolished it was due to America’s belief in Manifest Destiny. White Anglo-Saxons assumed they were called by God to rule the “New World”, but also to rule the Africans they had enslaved. In essence, God chose white people over all other races to be the ruling elites who dominate the world. They are the chosen people, in similar ways to Israel, who were God’s chosen people, determined to rule and colonize the “Promised Land”. Not only would Americans colonize, they would also proselytize and set an example of what pious morality ought to look like. In being an example, whites began to understand themselves …show more content…
Although a few historical instances have helped me to realize the opposite, Douglas A. Blackmon’s Slavery By Another Name founded the severity of how wrong I really was about my country’s history. Blackmon makes the case in his 400 page historical commentary that ten years after the emancipation of slaves, African American’s few freedoms were again taken away by way of peonage. Jim Crow laws were implemented to not only subjugate blacks, but also to further Manifest Destiny. He follows the Cottenham family generation by generation, first outlining their great-grandfather Green who was torn from his African motherland and placed into antebellum slavery. After Abraham Lincoln’s venture to end slavery, the next generation of Cottenhams were given the opportunity to vote and receive a small tract of land. Unfortunately, certain Southern states, crippled by the war, such as Alabama and Mississippi, knew the only way to rebuild their lands was through the re-enslavement of their African neighbors. To work around the new anti-slavery laws, states such as Alabama would arrest any and all young African males who they deemed as miscreants or sexual predators. Black males were detested in Southern society since they played the antagonist role, but were also essential to the vitality of the South’s economy. Once these men were in custody, the flourishing mines would purchase them for an inconsequential fee. Working twelve to fourteen hour days, many of these men were treated far worse in this form of peonage-slavery than ever before during the antebellum era. More often viewed as simple possessions that could be discarded and replaced, countless slaves died from inhumane treatment as well as harsh working conditions. Blackmon estimate that over 50,000 men are buried in mass graves all throughout the

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Anarchy was reigning during the creation of the Constitution because the Southern states were threatening secession if the government restricts slavery. Jefferson agrees partially with Madison’s ideas. Jefferson wrote that slaves should work “with their parents to a certain age,” and then be freed to a “place as the circumstances of the time should render most proper.” Blacks would then be sent to a place outside of America to live out their lives in freedom. Jefferson believed that blacks deserved their freedom, but had a “suspicion only” that blacks are “inferior to the whites in the endowments both of body and mind.” Jefferson felt it was wrong to force the slaves to keep working for someone else’s experience, but he also felt that slaves were unable to be a beneficial aspect in…

    • 932 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The KKK’s objective was to keep black men from going to vote, instill fear into the black community, and ultimately return things to the way it was before. “The Klan went on a rampage of whipping, hanging, shooting, burning, and throat-cutting to defeat Republicans and restore white supremacy.” (Roark et al 448) With constant racial harassment, the black men stop going to vote. One by one, the Republican state governments collapsed in the South. In doing so, reconstruction began to fall apart also. There was a group of democrats called the “Redeemers”, who promised to save the South from an “African American takeover”.…

    • 1225 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    At the beginning of the 1890’s African Americans were excluded from voting due to the Jim Crow caste system. “Denying black men the right to vote through legal operations and violence was the first step in taking away African Americans rights” claims National Museum of American History. Although they officially had the right to vote, in many states there were laws which made doing so difficult. For example the poll tax laws, which were too costly for many African American voters therefore they could not register to vote. Due to the end of slavery in 1865, former slaves were able to receive their rights to citizenship and the “equal protection” of the constitution in the 14th amendment and the right to vote in the 15th as said by history.com.…

    • 1609 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    (1)” Stephens believed that Union wants to topple the natural order which places Negro as subordinates and slave to white people. He assumed that Black people position is naturally imposed, and they cannot have the rights and privileges like white man. Along with Stephen many people in the south believed that, the state economy depended on slave labor; and by ending slavery it would bring disaster in their economy. People in the south did not wanted slavery to end, and these people were his audience while he was delivering the speech, so he said what the people wanted to hear and thus they supported…

    • 937 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Africans Americans who opposed these oppressive rules were physically attacked to impose fear in the black community. In fact, many of these cruel crimes consisted of torture and even murder. In his autobiography, Black Boy, Richard Wright described his own experience while growing up as a young black boy in southern Mississippi. He accounted the lynching of his step-uncle and explained how this refined his demeanor as an African American. He recognized the harmful consequences associated with acting against the rule of the Klan and was forced to obey the oppression and discrimination that was prominent within the South (Wright).…

    • 2114 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In 1831 there was the Nat Turner rebellion, where Nat turner (a slave) took 6 others slaves and went from plantation to plantation killing all slave owners, eventually his 6 turned into 40 slaves building in numbers per plantation raided. There was widespread fear in the aftermath of the rebellion, and white militias organized in retaliation against slaves. The raids only lasted a few days, turner was caught months later. The state executed 56 slaves accused of being part of the rebellion, and in the frenzy, many enslaved people who did not participate were still punished. At least 100 blacks and possibly up to 200, were murdered by militias and mobs in the area.…

    • 1279 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Before taking the Hajj and traveling abroad, Malcolm X establishes his claim of value regarding the white people by claiming that they are “devils” that caused the race problem. While believing this, Malcolm X also focuses his claim of policy on the expansion of the Nation of Islam. He promotes his claim of policy that encourages black people to join the Nation of Islam through his claims of value by emphasizing the wrongdoings of the white people against slaves that make the white man a “devil”. However, after Malcolm X travels to several different countries in Africa and takes the Hajj, he shows a change in both his claim of value and claim of policy. His new claim of value accuses the American societal structure of being evil rather than the white people themselves.…

    • 1915 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Southerners took the defeat in the Civil War personally; additionally the social and economic loss of slavery only compounded the resentment. The resentment noted by a Nashville newspaper, which reported that white gangs were “riding about whipping, maiming, and killing all Negros who do not obey the orders of former masters (Henretta, Edwards and Self, 446).” Many Ex-Confederate politicians’ receive prominent positions in state governments. An example is the appointment of Andrew Stephens, the former vice president of the Confederacy, to represent Georgia in Congress. These pro-slavery politicians circumvented the Emancipation Proclamation and Thirteenth Amendment with the Black Codes that aimed at oppressing the newly freed status given to blacks (Henretta, Edwards and Self 2012, 448). An example of this is when blacks found themselves fighting for their freedom of the right to vote.…

    • 856 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Ex-slaves were forced to carry passes given to them by their former masters wherever they went. In this quote, Henry Adams a former slave, shares his story of his struggle for freedom. Technically he was given freedom with the Emancipation Proclamation but risked being killed if he ever left his masters house. The Emancipation Proclamation did not grant freedom, it only angered white slave holders which led to harsh beatings and death. They would convince blacks to stay with them and sign a sharecropping contract that required hard labor (PBS).…

    • 888 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Ex-Confederate officials being re elected to political status had a burning desire for the reestablishment of white supremacy which they called “Redemption”. This desire caused the formation of the famous vigilante group the KKK, who rode around destroying crops, burning houses, lynching and even murdering freed African Americans who threatened white supremacy. While the government tried to distinguish the KKK, the group has yet to end, although most recent members are estimated to belong in the Deep South. These acts combined with the long lasting Jim Crow Laws, laws ensuring segregation, proved that federal laws had made the African Americans free but white racists ensured them to be far from…

    • 1109 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays