Friday, July 8, 2011

The Family Leader says children born into slavery were better off than children born today

Presidential Candidate Sen. Rick Santorum
Presidential  Candidate  Michele Bachmann
In a July 7 press release from The Family Leader,  presidential candidates were told what they would have to do would to get its endorsement: voluntarily sign The Marriage Vow pledge that says candidates must agree to oppose  gay marriage. Republican candidates Rick Santorum and Michele Bachmann have already signed the pledge. Republicans no longer pledge their allegiance to America. They pledge to individuals and organizations.

The Family Leader describes itself as “a Christian conservative organization which provides a consistent, courageous voice in the churches, in the legislature, in the media, in the courtroom, in the public square . . . always standing for God’s truth in order to strengthen the family.”

Bob Vander Plaats, president and CEO of The Family Leader said in the press release, “We believe that the candidates’ positions on core values, such as marriage, correlate directly to his/her moral stances on energy issues, sound budgeting policies, national defense, and economic policies".

The Marriage Vow subtitled A Declaration of Dependence Upon Marriage and Family states:

“Presidential candidates who sign The Marriage Vow will sign off on support of personal fidelity to his/her spouse, appointing faithful constitutionalists as judges, opposition to any redefinition of marriage, and prompt reform of uneconomic and anti-marriage aspects of welfare policy, tax policy, and divorce law.  The Marriage Vow also outlines support for the legal advocacy for the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), humane efforts to protect women and children, rejection of anti-women Sharia Islam, safeguards for all married and unmarried U.S. military personnel, and commitment to downsizing government and the burden upon American families".
Bob Vander Plaats

The “Vow" further states: “Faithful monogamy is at the very heart of a designed and purposeful order–as conveyed by Jewish and Christian Scripture by Classical Philosophers, by Natural Law, and by the American founders –upon which our concept of Creator-endowed human rights, racial justice and gender equality all depend".

As I read more of the document, a paragraph directly below the above statement hit me like a ton of flying bricks, all of them landing flat on my head! I could not believe what I was reading! But my mind quickly reverted back to Michele Bachmann’s rewriting of African American history as it relates to slavery.

Number one of six points stated in the pledge:

“Slavery had a disastrous impact on African American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parents household than was an African American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African American President".

According the stories and historical recollections I’ve researched, there was no such thing as a”two-parent slave household”, or slave children being raised by both slave parents. In the book I Was Born in Slavery, edited by Andrew Walters, there are personal accounts of individuals born into slavery.They were not raised by a "two parents household."

In the book Sarah Ashley (her slave name) recalls “I was bo’n in Miss’ippi. I was ‘bout five years old when I left there and come here (Texas).. Mister Henry Thomas, he buys us and bring us here. He was a spec’lator. He buy up lots of niggers and sell and sell’em. Us fambly was separated. My udder (other) two sisters and my fadder (father) was sold to a man, I never know his name, in Alabama. I stay with the spect’lator’s gang fo’ five or ten year.

“Then they put me on a block and bid me off. That was in N’ Yawlins (New Orleans). I was scared and cry, but they put me up there anyway. They sold me and my two sisters. They take me to Gregory. I think they pay ‘bout a thousand dollars for me. Mister Thomas, he trabble (travel) ‘roun and buy and sell, buy and sell niggers. They didn’t sell us fo’ a long spell. Us stay in the spec’lator’s drove".

The words of exslave Sarah Ashley and thousands more like her speaks loudly and clearly. Her recollection knocks The Family Leader's idea of slave history is knocked out of the ballpark by Ashley's memory. We all know that children today are not put on auction blocks and sold like cattle, while their parents await their turn to be sold at the same auction. 

No, Republican candidates, slave children were not raised by two-parent. Few of them lived with their mothers and fathers until adulthood. A great majority of stronger black males–then called “bucks" were used as breeders, not in-house fathers and heads of households.

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