1865 Tribulation

All of the page numbers at this point make me think of historical events. In 1865 the 13th amendment was narrowly introduced into the constitution. In case you don’t have them memorized that’s the one that abolished slavery in the U.S. The American Civil War ended in 1865, but even today we feel the ripples of those events across time. The reality of how people felt, why they acted as they did, has faded from memory & now we misremember it as legend. Of course, even at the time they couldn’t agree on reality any more than we can now. If nothing else we moved forward & wrote it down so we might better remember our faults & build on our strengths.

I was watching an alternate history video about if slavery in the U.S. had never happened & they brought up the silver lining to that dark cloud. If not for slavery American culture now would likely be homogenous & we would be poorer for lack of the innovations that black people gave to society. America would suck a lot more if we never had to admit that “all people are created equal”. Even thought it took a ridiculously long time for us to get there, & just as long to get most people on board with the idea. Anyway the long and short of it was that the suffering caused by slavery wasn’t in vain. I can understand the point they were trying to make because imagining America without black people as a driving force in society is pretty bleak.

Somebody found the video in question. Before you have a conniption in the comments take a look at the video first. It’s not presented in a disrespectful way. What If American Slavery Never Existed?


Hey, John’s beard/goatee/portable face hamster has escaped again!

If only more staff were like the cast of “Between Failures”…because in reality, I see most people as unworthy of their employment and need immediate termination. Especially in Maine, where a great portion of the workforce are hicks, retards (diagnosed and otherwise), and Somalians. I would kill myself if I didn’t see the world as better off without THEM rather than ME.

In all fairness, I can understand why Carol would get defensive, but even she can’t be so daft as to not realize the lackluster labor force factor in this scenario. At least the terrible management got fired in the end. Now if only that happened in reality.

Before you see people as being “unworthy” of their employment, Brandon, take the time to understand why they are at their job and to whom they are supporting with their pay salary.

And don’t bring “retards” into this. Some of those “retards” who are fortunate to get a job at least have a chance to turn their lives around instead of being society’s punching bag for mental conditions that they have no personal control over.

Don’t think “retards” here refers to anyone genuinely (spelling?) retarded, just the typically vacuous, though it’d be a poor choice of words. Might take offense at “hicks” used derogatorily, though.

“Diagnosed and otherwise.” It’s genuine because of that phrase. It might be unintentionally genuine, but it would read as -explicitly- targeting those with genetic deficiencies, as opposed to mere idiots. I lived near an area where people with genetic deficiencies could get lynched. Hearing this phrasing here is not pleasant.

Company politics is a messy thing. John learned that the hard way. It’s all a matter of really who’s got the protection from the higher-ups and how far do they have it. But it seems like John’s in a good place

I can see that. I really can.

Such as- As a kid, from about 5-18, I used to love reading the books of the comic strip- Pogo by Walt Kelly.
In the comic, Kelly’s japes at: government people, Presidents, + politics, were more like gentle ribbing, [than the poignant, stern punches that some of Kelly’s era’s fellow-artists did, at such things].
But- since all of the events + political events that “Pogo” was spoofing, were far before my time, in the 1940s through the early 1970s, I could always see Pogo as a fun thing, and a light spoof of events.

If Pogo [had existed in a more recent time], and had spoofed the events in [the 1991 Gulf War], I probably would have a hard time seeing the humor, of a spoof about that war’s events.

Frig it!
I missed you saying, “company politics”, and thought you said, “contemporary politics”.
Sorry. My bad.
Can’t think. Time for me to go to bed. :)

I bought all the Pogo books when I could back then. Unfortunately, my collection has dwindled over the years. My favorite was the one with the thinking contest, I think between Beauregard and was it Churchy? That one too is lost.

I don’t even remember which volume that was in.

Yay. Another Pogo fan! :)

Dang, I don’t know.

The following site, says it is an “index to the Pogo Possum books”.
The book, [Potluck Pogo], which likely is a collection of the Pogo strips, from 1954-1955, has a part in it, where Albert the alligator, + Beauregard the dog, have a thinking contest. Maybe that’s the sequence?
Here’s the site: http://www.waynecountry.net/Pogo/pogoindex.html

Slavery is bad. That’s a given.

However, the problem with the alternate reality take on it, is that it can be done to show how things could be better if it stayed, just as easily, because alternate realities are just fiction.

For instance, there’s no saying that what was invented by a black person, wouldn’t have been invented by someone else. Just look at how history has shown how people could invent the same things and someone had to win on the way to the patent office/public propaganda.

How about the alternate history we live in,where a war for southern independence/ northern aggression is called a civil war(which is where 2 or more faction vie for control of the whole), and was completely and utterly about slavery to the exclusion of everything else. How many poor and middle class people in the south do you suppose gave their lives fighting for the right of rich people to own slaves?

Agreed. There would likely be no great difference in what technology exists; in many ways, most given technology is just an obvious, almost inevitable result of previous technologies and scientific advancements. The bigger difference, if there had been no slavery, would have been differences in race-based politics and differences in culture. There’s also this; it’s presented more as “What would life be like for the white Americans if there had been no blacks?” but it’s just as fair to ask “What would life be like for the blacks if their ancestors had never been brought over here?” Considering the state of Africa, it’s not an easy question to answer.

All in all I agree with Pinkk above on how “alternate history” is no more than speculative fiction with a nice sounding name. That said, it is a very sad and weak angle for this video to try and minimize the horrors of slavery. It really sounds as if destroying societies, uprooting families, displacing contingents of people across the world only to then force them into unpaid labor and abuse ended up being good in a way, if only we look at it in this weird angle. Look at all the good it did in Spanish or Portuguese colonial lands too!

All this not counting how even without Africans and their descendants, no society in the Americas would be homogenous (if they ever were even in Europe or anywhere else in the world). Unless, or course, if in “alternate history” there were no people, societies or civilizations living and developing there for millenia before Europeans came to conquer and colonize the land.

Bottom line is, miscigenation is good. Diversity is good. That these are byproducts of centuries of exploitation and suffering in the name of profit and power is not, and it doesn’t make this process even a tiny bit less terrible for it…

This. Thank you for saying it so well.

In addition, without slavery, and doubling down on slavery for centuries, we would have found it _easier_ to admit that people are people.

And, if we hadn’t had such a toxic culture, we would have had lots of voluntary immigrants from Africa. Who would have been much better positioned to invent stuff.

At no point in the video was slavery presented as good, it was just a thought experiment looking for positives from negative historical events.

I got it from the post, Crave, and for the sake of my sanity I like to believe nobody is gonna outright defend slavery as a good thing. It’s just that “alternate history” is a very disingenuous way to present things, and the “looking for positives in a bad thing” has been so often used by apologists of how many atrocities there are that it really sounds as a sly attempt at atenuating just how bad it was, you know? Especially when there are historical ramifications from it that are still ongoing today and affecting people’s daily lives. It’s still really bad that diversity and miscigenation are fortunate byproducts of terrible circumstances.

I completely agree. It is really sad that even in this comment section there is someone complaining about there being many Somalians in the workforce of Maine. I mean, I don’t even know if that is true, but regardless, why should it be a problem that there are Somalians working in Maine?!

I’m guessing the poster had a bad experience with Somalians. I had only worked with one before, who while one of the worst workers I’ve ever known, I didn’t use to judge all Somalians.

Instead I just asked him straight to his face what was up with him :p

Considering that pretty much every large group of people that has ever existed had slaves, I think trying to wonder whether a lack of it would have resulted in more racial acceptance is specious. We should remember that while it’s terrible that the US and Europe had slaves, they were also the first people to ever OPPOSE slavery, and have been the ones to spear-head it’s drastic reduction over the last few centuries.

Didn’t England, including its empire, abolish slavery earlier? I seem to remember hearing of a so-called Underground Railroad spiriting slaves off to Canada where they would be safe.

I realize it’s really late to give you an answer to your question, but on the off-chance you’re still around to hear it:

England and the US both outlawed the International slave trade around the same time. That is, Both countries passed laws outlawing the import of slaves in 1807.

England outlawed *slavery* in 1833, 30 years before the US went to war over the same issue. On a historical timescale, the difference is negligible. By contrast, there were other European countries who abolished slavery both before and after the US did, so we weren’t some kind of moral “johnny-come-lately” on the issue. Abolition in the US was reflective of a wider, global movement to do away with slavery… Which hasn’t actually been completely accomplished even today.

Sorry, former History teacher.

There is an idea from the 1970s, martial arts film: Circle of Iron.
It works for people, and I think it works for nations, as well: [paraphrased]-

A wise man asks- what is wrong, (Mr.) Cord?
Cord says- I’m sad. I’ve messed up a lot of things. I made a wealthy man mad at me, and I can’t go back to his town.
I think my pride + my envy might have gotten my girlfriend killed. I’m not in danger, but now, I can’t stand being me.
The wise man says- don’t let your past mistakes trouble you.
If you went back in time, and erased all the bad things about you- you wouldn’t have suffered the pain that they caused, and you wouldn’t have the information you found from those mistakes, and you would have not learned from them.
If you removed those bad things, you would no longer be yourself, and then there would be no you.

Some mistakes can be avoided, though. If his mistakes (based on pride and envy) were big enough to cause someone’s death, I’m pretty certain he could have learn from the warning signs before committing them.

Granted, those mistakes changed him and he has triple the motivation not to commit them ever again. But is this “him” really better than the “him” who still had a living girlfriend ?

These are good points to consider.
However, Cord was living in a Conan the Barbarian-type of world- where brawling, + sword-fighting, were the ways to get things done.
Working with others, and looking out for other people, were, likely, new ideas to him. *Shrugs*

While I agree in principle, it has been my experience that are are quite a number of people who don’t learn particular lessons until they personally suffer the consequences of their actions in tragic or near tragic circumstances. Some lessons can only be learned the hard way, and it’s likely that was the case for this particular character. Pride and envy are considered mortal sins for a reason, and all of us are guilty of suffering from both to some extent or another from time to time. Some of us just learn faster to recognize the signs and head off serious trouble before it happens.

Sure thing.
I think I could have retold the story, with a little more polish to it.
Rather than saying: [ don’t let your past mistakes trouble you,], I probably should have said: Don’t let your past mistakes, [overly concern] you. Hm.

I don’t see how anyone can claim that without slavery, America would be homogenous. AFAIK, large numbers of Chinese entered as migrants, particularly to work on the railways. There are the Hispanic populations, particularly in the South-West. There are the Native American populations. More recently there are migrants from the Indian subcontinent.

None of these are of white European origin, and none are the legacy of slavery.

There’s a better word for what I was trying to say, but I could only think of homogenous. Even now I can’t remember the word. Homogeneous is as close as I can get until I think of it.

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