'X' wrote:First of all these people were too ungrateful to appreciate being "discovered" and kept trying to hold on to their own land; (I find it ironic that Colombo's descendants get pissed off if someone crawls through their living room window and "discovers" their DVD Player).
'X' wrote:Next these natives refused to admit they were Chinese, then they were too stingy to bring Columbo piles of gold even when the Spanish cut off their ears and other body parts as an incentive.
To top it off, the native people suffered from great plagues of common European diseases like flu, smallpox and cholera that they had never been exposed to before (imagine having the nerve to die before they could be worked to death in the silver mines)!
Millions of native "Americans" died of diseases brought by the Europeans. Within twenty years whole cultures had been wiped off the face of the earth, killed by disease and the spears of hunting parties organized by Columbo. Caribbean islands and Central America had been teeming with people; they were reduced to empty villages filled with rotting corpses.
"Funny" thing is that the Spaniards caught several diseases in the jungles too, one of them was amebea-diarrhea to which lots of Spaniards succumbed later on.
The disease was called "Moctezumas revenge" from that point on.
But yea, mostly the natives suffered from the diseases.
'X' wrote:It dawned on the Europeans that it was going to be hard to get dead "Indians" to work. "White" convicts who were brought in by the thousands as slave labor didn't appreciate being whipped or beaten for no pay either; they ran away or wanted their own slaves when their "indenture" was over in seven years.
Britain set up penal colonies in America, South Africa and Australia to provide a slave labor force for their rich plantation owners. They emptied their jails of the dregs of London, Birmingham and Liverpool; sending thousands of white thieves, pimps, prostitutes, rapists and murderers into the growing colonies.
Modern "whites" like to think that their ancestors came to America on the Mayflower seeking religious freedom. About twenty "whites" came on the Mayflower; millions more came to the colonies chained in prison ships after standing before a judge who gave them the choice between seven years of slavery in the colonies or a hangman's noose.
But "whites" didn't hold up well under the lash either. Who was going to clear forests and build roads and dig ditches and build cities and chop cotton and tote barges and lift bales without dropping dead in the heat?
Hmmm . . .
To Kidnap a Continent
Just as Joseph Kennedy made his fortune selling illegal booze for the Mafia during prohibition, many New England "blue bloods" can trace their fortunes to the sale of human beings during slavery.
Requiring less expensive equipment and a shorter turn around time than a whaling voyage, old sailing ships could be outfitted with chains and a few months worth of beans and corn meal and return in six months with a human cargo valued at $50,000 to $100,000, a small fortune at the time.
One of the favorite rationalizations "white" people have for slavery is that "African chiefs sold their own people to slave traders, so it's not our fault". Reading the journals of slave ship captains quickly pokes a hole in that pile of crap. I've read dozens of first hand accounts of slave ship captains from the sixteeth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries; a typical journal reads like the following one by Sir John Hawkins, Queen Elizabeth I's personal "privateer" (pirate).
In 1567 Hawkins set out from England in six ships paid for by the queen and her cronies (investors), including his flagship, the "Jesus of Lubec". They stopped in Africa to pick up slaves to sell to the Spanish colonies in the Caribbean during their pirate cruise:
"(We reached) the coast of Guinea, and arrived at Cape Verde, the eighteenth of November: where we landed 150 men, hoping to obtain some Negros (sic), where we got but fewe (sic), and those with great hurt and damage to our men, which chiefly proceeded of their envenomed arrowes (Africans shot Hawkin's men up badly with poisoned arrows)." Hawkins describes the poison as being unusual: the arrows left small wounds, but his men died ten days later with their mouths paralyzed shut.
Hawkins continues: "From thence we passed the time upon the coast of Guinea, searching with all diligence the rivers from Rio Grande, unto Sierra Leona (sic), till the twelfth of Januarie, in which time we had not gotten together a hundreth and fiftie Negros . . .
"(On) the 15 of Januarie (we) assaulted a towne of the Negros which had in it 8000 Inhabitants, being very strongly impaled and fenced after their manner, but it was so well defended that our men prevailed not, but lost six men and fortie hurt (the slavers had six of their men killed and forty injured): so that our men sent forthwith to me for more helpe."
Sir John came with reinforcements and they "assaulted the towne, both by land and by sea, and very hardly (strongly) with fire (their houses being covered with dry Palme leaves). We obtained (took) the towne, and put the inhabitants to flight, where we took 250 persons, men, women and children. Now had we obtained between foure and five hundred Negros, wherewith we thought it somewhat reasonable to seeke the coast of the West Indies . . . whereunto we proceeded with all diligence, furnished our watering, tooke fuell, and departed the coast of Guinea the third of Februarie . . ."
Hawkins reports that the hold of the Jesus was filled to overflowing with human cargo.
By the eighteenth century Europeans had snatched most of the Africans living near the coasts and rivers, and slaves were harder to obtain. Whites then equipped huge armies of blacks to hunt slaves for them. Whole communities were rounded up and captured and sold to white traders, who built large slave trading forts on the coast.
Kidnapped from Guinea in 1735, six year old Venture Smith was the son of a wealthy African trader. He later wrote that Guinea had been "invaded by a numerous army from a nation not far distant, furnished with . . . all kinds of arms . . . they were instigated by some white nation who equipped and sent them to subdue and possess the country" (capture black people as slaves). "The army of the enemy was large, I should suppose consisting of about six thousand men."
Venture's family fled the invading slave catchers with the family of their King; he later describes their capture: "They then came to us in the reeds, and the very first salute I had from them was a violent blow on the back part of the head with the fore part of a gun, and at the same time a grasp round the neck. I then had a rope put about my neck, as had all the women in the thicket with me, and were immediately led to my father, who was likewise pinioned and haltered for leading." Venture's father was tortured and murdered by his captors when he didn't reveal where his money was stored.
"All of us were then put into the castle [a European slave trading post], and kept for market." He was later sold to the steward on a slave ship and brought to Connecticut: "I was bought on board by one Robert Mumford . . . for four gallons of rum, and a piece of calico (cloth), and called Venture, on account of his having purchased me with his own private venture. Thus I came by my name."
John Barbot, an agent for the French Royal African Company, made at least two voyages to the West Coast of Africa, in 1678 and 1682. He reported how slaves were sorted before shipment:
"Such as are allowed good and sound, are set on one side, and the others by themselves; which slaves so rejected are there called Mackrons, being above thirty five years of age, or defective in their limbs, eyes or teeth; or grown grey, or that have the venereal disease, or any other imperfection. These being set aside which have passed as good, is marked on the breast, with a red- hot iron, imprinting the mark of the French, English, or Dutch companies, that so each nation may distinguish their own. In this particular, care is taken that the women, as tenderest, be not burnt too hard."
"Many of those slaves we transport from Guinea to America are prepossessed with the opinion, that they are carried like sheep to the slaughter, and that the Europeans are fond of (eating) their flesh; which notion so far prevails with some, as to make them fall into a deep melancholy and despair, and to refuse all sustenance (when) much compelled and even beaten to oblige them to take some nourishment: notwithstanding all which, they will starve to death; whereof I have had several instances in my own slaves both aboard and at Guadalupe. And tho' I must say I am naturally compassionate, yet have I been necessitated sometimes to cause the teeth of those wretches to be broken, because they would not open their mouths, or be prevailed upon by any entreaties to feed themselves; and thus have forced some sustenance into their throats...."
Barbot continued: "One thing is to be taken notice of by sea-faring men, Fida and Ardra slaves are the most apt to revolt aboard ships, by a conspiracy carried on amongst themselves . . . and will therefore watch all opportunities to deliver themselves, by assaulting a ship's crew, and murdering them all, if possible: whereof, we have almost every year some instances (where this happens) in one European ship or other, that is filled with slaves."
Captured Africans were herded into pens, branded like cattle, and then chained lying down in the hold of a wooden sailing ship for the six to eight week voyage to America.
Lucky slaves were chained in a loose pack, giving them 24 inches of space to lie in. Greedier slavers opted for a "tight pack" spacing of 18 inches between slaves, which meant more than a month of lying chained in your own and other people's excrement. Tight pack usually meant more deaths among the captives; it was not unusual for 20% to 30% death rate among the slaves during the crossing.
This so called "Middle Passage" resulted in the deaths of millions of black people, which intensified in the early nineteenth century when one of the greatest slaving nations on earth, England, outlawed slavery and sent its navy to attack slave ships on the open sea and arrest their crews.
Millions of blacks were thrown overboard still chained together when British warships were sighted. Historians estimate that somewhere between 30 and 60 million black people were murdered by slavers during the Atlantic crossing during three hundred years of the slave trade.
This constitutes the greatest act of mass murder in the history of the earth.
African tribes did indeed sell slaves to white slave traders, cause by that time Europeans did not know the routes to travel into inner africa (They were "discovered" several centuries later) and when one tribe defeeated another they sold the prisoners to the slave traders. They still show no mercy with rivaling tribes in africa these days.
But thats not the point and doesnt take away from the fact, that European money and need for cheap labor was the main factor behind the slave trade and it doesnt change the history and effects of slavery at all.