The, Rags, And The Pursuit Of Happiness

1167 Words 5 Pages
History is rife with grandiose tales, of those from humble beginnings rising to positions of extravagance and luxury. The classic “rags-to-riches” story takes many forms, with an assortment of characters, yet it is still inspires and warms the hearts of all that hear it. Although not as time honored, the condition of African-Americans in the United States is no less inspirational. From the day the first Black men and women set foot upon this continent, they were at a tremendous disadvantage. To simply state that the odds were stacked against them would disrespect the immensity of their circumstances. For centuries, generations of Blacks suffered through the brutal and dehumanizing institution of slavery; carving a tiny place for themselves in a society that both shunned and exploited them. With emancipation came hope, hope that freedom would bring about the guarantees of, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” they had heard much about, but were denied so long. Angry, that these former slaves were no longer physically bound, Anglo Americans, using all means at their disposal, continued to oppress and abuse an entire race that had spent lifetimes building this nation, and providing the labor that amassed fortunes for others. Still, the descendants of freed slaves carried on, neigh they thrived. Toiling from dawn ‘til dusk in the fields, devoting hours to their studies, creating self-sustaining communities; Blacks used every ounce of will, physical strength, and mental

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