Name: Instructor: Course: Date: Thomas Jefferson's View on Slavery Thomas Jefferson was the third American president. His term lasted from 1801 to 1809. Born in 1743, he grew up in Virginia at a period when slavery had existed for almost 75 years. Jefferson grew up in a plantation in Virginia with enslaved workers…
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In his life, Jefferson appears to have contradicted his writing, views, deeds and thoughts on the issue of slavery (Bernstein 56). Jefferson as an opponent against slavery As a young legislator and president, Jefferson took actions that he thought would aid in ending slavery. As a young legislator in Virginia, he had tried to advocate the private land owners to free their slaves. This was, however, unsuccessful as private land owners viewed this as a way towards economic downfall. They used slaves as cheap labor in their plantations and thus, if they had supported Jefferson in his advocacy for slavery end, they would have suffered economically. Although he failed in his advocacy for slavery abolishment by private land owners, Jefferson later returned to draft a bill barring freed blacks from staying in Virginia. He drafted a Virginia law prohibiting the importation of enslaved blacks into the state (Zinn 120). He was successful in the passage of this bill. Nevertheless, it is viewed that the private land owners in his state passed the bill to raise the price of slaves who were already their captives. In 1784, Jefferson forwarded a proposal to ban slavery in the newly created territories of the northwest. As the principal author of the land ordinance of 1784, he called for an end to slavery and involuntary servitude in these territories. Jefferson wanted a line to be drawn depicting the north and south at which slavery should not be extended westwards of the impassable line. This bill, however, was defeated by a single vote. Jefferson also proposed in the mid 1770s for a means through which those born into slavery could be freed. He referred to this as gradual emancipation by which after a certain date, those who were born into slavery became freed. In his advocacy for gradual emancipation of slaves, Jefferson wanted slaves to be resettled out of the United States, or they be returned to Africa (Spahn 65). He believed that once slaves were freed, the oppression they had suffered under their masters would breed hatred for their masters. He saw to it that the slaves would instigate violence on their former masters. It is in this thought that he believed the best plan would be to resettle slaves out of America. These actions show the efforts by Jefferson, while still a legislator, to end and stop slavery at the time. As president, in 1807, Jefferson signed an act which prohibited importation of slaves. This act helped to outlaw international slave trade in the United States although it took effect almost a year later. Jefferson was also the chief author of the declaration of independence in which he strongly argued against slavery (Zinn 49). Through the declaration of independence, he noted that slavery opposed nature which calls for every human being to be treated and respected equally. He called the institution to be immoral and not just. In his first draft of the declaration, he noted that every man was equal, and slavery did not replicate this but only caused oppression and death to those held captive. These statements represent Jefferson’s stance on slavery which he opposed. Thomas Jefferson’s views on slavery also became noted through his use of strong words in which he called for an end to the institution. Through his writing and correspondence with political and business associates, his strong words against slavery stood out. His
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The conclusion from this study states that Thomas Jefferson is a man who has been well noted in history. His first inaugural address contained many persuasive elements. Jefferson’s mastery of these elements enhanced his success as his great communication skills won him the loyalty and support of many. Many people were persuaded to agree with him through his writings and speeches
The British colonies in the North America through the Civil war created moral differences between the whites and the African Americans. This period of slavery was a very crucial era, the impact of this slavery can still be seen today. During that period two books were written which greatly helped in changing the perspective of people regarding slavery.
Many historians have tried to describe the slave period and what slaves went through. Actually, slavery became famous in 16th century due to agricultural activities that took place in the new land after the discoveries by early explorers. Moreover, in the areas where plantation farming was a mean of survival diseases developed and Europeans from countries such as Britain who had come here to seek for labor were affected.
It is partly due to the very reality that Jefferson, as his writings depict, never aim to announce unconditional freedom to the black slaves, leading a life of misery and humiliation in the US soil, far from their indigenous motherland. Thomas Jefferson, according to Halliday (2002), pretends at the same time to be a loyal and committed representative of the state and the white Anglo Saxon population (WASP), and simultaneously claims to be the benefactor of the African community, serving their white masters as slaves (31).
Slavery was very dominating and prominent in major areas of the United States of America. Slavery in the US was termed as a major legal institution and was regarded lawful and ethical. The roots of such act and laws popped up when the United States successfully managed to get the independence from Great Britain in the year 1776.
According to the report slave trade was illegal, but the trade continued to exist till 1860. The people living in North till 1830 were in favor of banning slavery; however, southerners adopted slavery as acceptable as many slave workers were available without any pay. People have hundreds of slaves working on their plantations.
The video reveals that the laws in this country are maybe not sufficient to cater for all the people in the country, especially the people who are being trafficked and subjected to slavery. The video can be analyzed using Bales eight stages of human trafficking,
The picture depicts Jesus holding Thomas’ hand and leading his figure to the wound and Thomas can be seen showing surprise on his face (Most, 2007). It portrays that Thomas had not believed that Jesus had risen from the dead and, therefore, needed stronger
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