Benjamin Franklin was one of this nation’s most revered founding fathers. He is known as a great American hero. Yet, when our young children of color are introduced to Benjamin Franklin in the earliest grades of 3-5 in units of America’s history in our public and private classrooms. The Benjamin Franklin who was a supporter of America’s democracy and signer of both the Declaration of Independence and this nation’s US Constitution isn’t revealed as a owner of human property. That aspect of Franklin is shielded from those history lessons. Hell, even in junior and senior high school history units of early American History that fact is not openly taught. Well here is how Benjamin Franklin articulated what a slave was in this description:
“A slave,” Benjamin Franklin explained in 1770, is a human Creature, stolen, taken by Force, or bought of another or of himself, with Money; and who is taken or bought, is compelled to serve the Taker, or Purchaser, during Pleasure or during Life. He may be sold again, or let for Hire, by his Master to another, and is then obliged to serve that other; he is one who is bound to obey, not only the Commands of his Master, but also the commands of the lowest Servant of that Master, when set over him; who must come when he is called, go when he is bid, and stay when he is ordered, though to the farthest Part of the World, and in the most unwholesome Climate; who must wear such Cloaths as his Master thinks fit to give him, and no other . . . and must be content with such Food or Subsistence as his Master thinks fit to order for him, or with such small Allowance in Money as shall be given him in lieu of Victuals or Clothing; who must never absent himself from his Master’s Service without Leave; who is subject to severe Punishments for small Offences, to enormous Whippings, and even Death, for absconding from his Service, or for Disobedience to Orders.
“The War Before The War
FUGITIVE SLAVES AND THE STRUGGLE FOR AMERICA’S SOUL
FROM THE REVOLUTION TO THE CIVIL WAR”
To say that our ancestors stood even a chance of securing freedom from this men who were the determinators of this nation’s path towards freedom is fair to say was impossible. That’s why the immediacy of a plan to create a National Commission For The Repayment Of Past Sins Towards Americans of African Descent In America’s History should be presented to each of the two major political parties platforms. It is imperative that this be a critical part of any discussion related to the support of any candidate seeking a national elective office in 2020.