On the very dust cover of Erica Armstrong Dunbar’s well-researched and narrowly focused work, the professor of black studies does allude to the fact that George Washington had white and black servants. However, if she looked too closely into the yawning maw of inequity she skirts in the pursuit of Ona Judge’s successful bid for freedom, she would be in danger of shattering the greatest of America’s foundational lies, namely that only people of African descent suffered the cruelties of bondage in the sick, morally pallorless land that was the slave nation of the United States.
But, like many a good historian, she leaves open and available the keys to unravelling the very myth which is her cocoon of exclusive suffering and the foundation for her light chocolate privilege. There is, in her examination of the contemptible character of George Washington, who once murdered a French officer [or oversaw its doing] and then later broke his word of honor to stand trial for the act in France, a key to the reason why Washington sought to rid himself of Negro slaves and servants altogether and to replace them with German servants bought from the Rhineland.
In 1796, in Philadelphia, a state which, according to Benjamin Franklin nine years earlier had over 200,000 unfree and escaped, white laborers, there were less than 100 negro slaves in Philadelphia. That city of literal bruthaly love had an ordinance which required owners of negroes to free them after six months. Never abiding by the spirit of the law when it could be broken, Washington would send his negroes south to Maryland every six months and then have them returned as if they were freshly minted chattel! This enabled Ona Judge to effect her escape and gain her freedom, giving a black eye to the savage father of a slave nation, a blemish which he much deserved.
I read portions of Ms. Dunbar’s book at a retail outlet and was unable to find a reference to the numerous white servants, sentenced to terms of three to 14 years who were relentlessly being hunted across Pennsylvania at the time Ona made her escape. Does it not strike a reader that the Quaker city of Philadelphia restricting ownership of Negroes to six months, but permitting ownership of whites for terms of 3-14 years—which could, and were strung together over the productive years of a white servant’s lifetime until he or she became useless and was then cast off to starve—as demonstrating a prejudice against Caucasians of the lower class and a preference for negroes as free poor wage earners, by the Caucasians of the upper class?
Why might this have been?
Why was the “one drop rule” universal in the American plantations and later the nation?
The one drop rule is still in force today and means that a person of notable Caucasian ancestry, such as Erica Armstrong Dunbar, with her Scottish and Nordic names and nearly white skin, is fictitiously regarded as 100% “African American” when she is obviously also of strongly European background.
What purpose does this one drop rule serve?
It serves the elites by rendering their class more exclusive.
It serves people of color at the bottom of the social order by expanding their numbers so that they might eventually challenge the lower class whites for the middle position on the social ladder.
These sentiments are obvious and completely shattered Frederick Douglas’s hope that mixed race “mulattos” such as himself would be able to effect a harmonious integration of the races in a post slavery nation.
Why then, in this racial reality, did, and do, and will the Caucasian upper class prefer a colored lower and middle class to a white lower and mid order?
Why do upper class whites encourage and practice the politics of racial identity among people of color but in every way disparage, discourage and even outlaw racial identity politics among people of their own race?
Quite obviously, because racial identity politics among Caucasians would sully the very ideal of elitism, that “the elite” possess exclusive claim too their position of privilege in a social system due to their allegiance to that system above all other concerns. This is the Roman model of elite citizenship as denoting stewardship to an abstract system that develops such power over humanity and its intrinsic organic institutions [family, tribe and the esoteric pursuits integral to masculine identity] that the system itself replaces any notion of God and achieves functional deification, with the elite as its priests.
Whatever the reader thinks of this theory of the Deified Slave State, I encourage you to follow Erica Armstrong Dunbar’s pursuit of her African ancestors as she tiptoes around the unmarked mass graves and countless forgotten ghosts of her European ancestors.
And ultimately, why lie about slavery? Why was the lie of exclusive black slavery perpetuated?
Former white slaves wanted to ascend the social order and forget their low origin.
White elites needed loyal white soldiers to displace the Red Indians and as a check against black slave uprisings.
Blacks benefit from this narrative by inheriting the very suffering of Christ, even if they themselves have suffered nothing.
Both advocates of white identity and black identity movements were thus onboard from the beginning.
Ultimately though, these are just the reasons for going along with our nation's core lie.
Why did America need a foundational lie?
The Founding Fathers had just conducted blasphemy against the sacred ancient lie of the "divine right of kings." An alternative sacred ancient lie was needed and they found it—admittedly so—in the ancient Republic of Rome, a nation built around an abstract notion of citizenship utterly divorced from tribal loyalties. The State itself, "Rome" was divine, the holy system of an all-conquering ideal of peace through war. The divinity of the state would be inherited by the emperor with the fall of the Republic, thus re-initiating the divine line of kingship in the West and the ideal of Roman Citizenship continued to be used under the Imperial system until it had finally been spread too thin to hold.
The Republic, the sacred system which bestows inalienable rights upon its chosen people, must not be called into question on a moral basis. If one comes to learn that the United States of America is based on the English Plantation System overlaid by an adoption of the ancient Roman Republic—at its core the moral spirit of a pillage-based slave society—than one might see the sacred Republic as unholy. It is far better to believe that some false, discarded notion of “white racial supremacy” was formerly at fault. Unfortunately, recognizing the unfree, suffering masses of white servants would bring into question the Divine State. Therefore a curtain must be drawn across the stage of the American Experience at those inexplicable junctures in American History when The Lie is clearly seen for what it is. The American Revolution and Civil War are not open windows into a blessed past, but barred doors to an accursed origin.
A Partial Exhumation of the American Dream