Sen. Tom Cotton made news once again in addition to his battle against The New York Times' 1619 Project. This time, he called slavery a "necessary evil." Senator Cotton and I do agree that due to the way our history played out, we do need to teach and educate our students about slavery and the fact that it was a part of our history. However, where we differ is that he appears to think slavery was a necessary thing.
Treating people as less than human is never a necessary thing.
It is absolutely irrational, close-minded, and racist to believe that slavery was necessary to advance the development of our country. And last time I checked, we're still a country that has some deep-rooted hate in it.
Cotton's thought process seems to be that slavery shaped us into the country we are, and he believes we are living in a great country. I, and so many others, however, don't see that.
I don't see our country as great when my Black and brown brothers and sisters fear for their lives.
I don't see our country as great when our own president mocks others.
Viewing slavery as a necessary thing, something that needed to happen implies that it made us great. Abolishing something so disgusting doesn't make us the hero, it makes us the problem for even having slavery in the first place.
Allowing something like this to happen makes you an enabler. Not denouncing slavery completely makes you racist because there's some part of you that thought it had to happen, some part of you that thinks we had to treat our Black brothers and sisters like they were less than human, like they are objects to be disposed of.
This isn't the society I want for the future generation nor is it the society they deserve. What did the Civil Rights leaders fight for if we're still experiencing this type of hate and have people walking around calling slavery necessary!
Need I remind you that during slavery, enslaved people only counted as three-fifths of a person?
A person is a person, no matter their skin color or status. I often wonder had we not been a nation founded on slavery, how would we view color? If we hadn't founded our nation viewing Black people as less than white people, would we still be in this situation?
I don't think there is any reason to call slavery a "necessary evil" because nothing that discounts a human life as being anything short of beautiful and valuable even remotely deserves a place in society. That's wrong and to dehumanize someone is one of the worst things we could possibly do.