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Thread: Blair says he is 'sorry' for slavery

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    Blair says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    Britain's Blair says 'sorry' for slavery

    London, United Kingdom

    15 March 2007 11:20

    British Prime Minister Tony Blair said on Wednesday he was "sorry" for his country's role in the slave trade.

    Blair has previously expressed "deep sorrow" for slavery, abolished within the British empire 200 years ago, but has been criticised by black rights organisations for not going further.

    "Well actually I have said it: We are sorry. And I say it again now," Blair told a news conference, when asked why he had previously stopped short of saying "sorry".

    "For us, the most important thing though is obviously to remember what happened in the past and to condemn it and say why it was so entirely unacceptable," he said during a news conference with Ghana's President John Kufuor.

    Between 10-million and 28-million Africans were shipped in appalling conditions to the Americas and sold into slavery between 1450 and the early 19th century.

    When Britain abolished the trade in 1807 it was the first major slave-trafficking nation to do so.

    Blair has previously acknowledged Britain's rise to global pre-eminence was partially dependent on colonial slave labour and Cabinet minister Peter Hain has said "sorry" for the role played by Northern Ireland and Wales in the trade.

    Earlier on Wednesday, Kufuor said people should be careful when spreading accusations about slavery as some African countries, including Ghana, were not free from blame.

    "If you study the slave trade, you will find that it was incidental to the history of those times," he told the Chatham House think tank in London.

    "Yes, among the trading partners perhaps some were worse than others. But I assure you if you come to Africa, if you come to Ghana, you will see that there were some very local participants in the trade," he said.

    Kufuor said Britain, Spain, Portugal and other nations that came to Africa to promote the slave trade were guilty, but they were not alone.

    "Some local indigenous groups were also guilty. So we have to be careful," Kufuor said.

    European nations shipped slaves to the Americas from West African countries such as Ghana. However, some local tribal chiefs in Ghana were responsible for selling fellow Africans to the European slavers.

    Blair said the focus now should be on stamping out modern-day slavery.

    "We shouldn't forget that although that act of Parliament was passed 200 years ago, there are still modern examples of slavery and people trafficking that we need to act against. - Reuters
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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    It's very magnaimous of Blair to apologize on behalf of Britian for the slave trade. Now maybe he will apologize to the British people for allowing their island to be swamped with millions of immigrants over the last ten years.

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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    When Britain abolished the trade in 1807 it was the first major slave-trafficking nation to do so.
    It should be noted that the US had been about to abolish the slave trade in 1787, but agreed to wait until 1808. But by 1808, when the slave trade was abolished, the abolition had been in the works for decades.

    Of course, we might not have been a major slave-trafficking country.



    Blair said the focus now should be on stamping out modern-day slavery.
    Absolutely! That social pressure would demand a current PM to apologize for something that began in the reign of King James is absurd. Sure, I wish there had been no British slave trade — it would have made life a lot better here in America. But it happened and it's over. No one now alive has been directly impacted by the British slave trade in the least, and it doesn't do anybody alive today one bit of good to apologize or receive an apology for it's having happened centuries ago. If something substantive is going to happen, then it would have to involve the British government repatriating all the slaves' descendants to Africa. And the slaves' descendants don't seem to want that.

    So the focus now should be on current issues. Like modern-day slavery.

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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    Quote Originally Posted by Madoc View Post
    It's very magnaimous of Blair to apologize on behalf of Britian for the slave trade. Now maybe he will apologize to the British people for allowing their island to be swamped with millions of immigrants over the last ten years.
    Absolutley right, also why is he apologizing, how many slaves has he had working for him in the past ? ( ans: about 60 million of us lol )

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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    So am I. Not a day goes by that I'm not "sorry" about the rotten seeds slavery has sown all over America.

    Unfortunately, Blair is apologizing to the wrong people. He should be apologizing to the indigenous white people of Britain. They are the ones who truly lost in the long run. As for negros, they enjoy the highest standard of living being in our countries via the slave-trade than any of their ilk in their own nations today.

    Blair should be ashamed at prostituting himself and his people to those who ought to be thanking us, not demanding apologies.


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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    Quote Originally Posted by Liberator Germaniae View Post
    British Prime Minister Tony Blair said on Wednesday he was "sorry" for his country's role in the slave trade.
    Early 19th century that is.

    Did he apologize for the necessitated child labor of English children (aged as young as six) under inhuman, dark, noisy, polluted, unsafe conditions in British industrial plants and mines, grafting 14 to 16 hours a day, six to seven days a week, for a compensation for which one hardly could buy an apple or potatoes, too? No benefits, no insurance, no retirement packages. Break your hand, get a flu, be an asthma wreck at the age of 17, and be fired and thrown without a winter cloak onto the frosty streets of Manchester. Be left there to die in the rain. No?

    That happened during the time when the U.S. cotton industry was relying on strong, relatively well-fed Negro slaves in the climatically blessed Southern states.

    What's worse, Mr. Blair? Do I smell hypocrisy or historical ignorance? Are your own people and children not worth an apology?

    No, it was never a problem, but Negro slavery made their hearts allegedly bleed. The poor Uncle Tom! So they pumped millions into the North, in order that the feds could slaughter hundreds of thousands of Southerners and terrorize millions of them more (for having peacefully exercised their constitutional rights, mind you).

    And thereafter there wasn't a single English aristocrat, banker, and industrialist who hadn't grown richer ...

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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    Quote Originally Posted by Liberator Germaniae View Post
    what about slavery against white women? Such as no civil and political voices during the French Revolution? Who's going to say sorry for that?

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    Re: Blairs says he is 'sorry' for slavery

    No one now alive has been directly impacted by the British slave trade in the least
    Except the descendants of the slaves in America, who no doubt have a far higher standard of living than they would've if they hadn't been transported!

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