History of moral objection to Slavery

John Hall johnhall@evergo.net
Tue, 18 Jun 2002 13:10:09 -0700

What is surprising is how short the moral objection to slavery (in
general) is.  There were objections by group X's to enslaving members of
group X, but the general moral objection to slavery appears to be a late
moral innovation of the West (specifically the Quakers in the mid 18th

Even as late as John Locke argued that his views were not inconsistent
with Slavery.

Politically, anti-Slavery gained ground in Britain after America had won
their independence.  Had the revolution been lost, it is doubtful that
such anti-Slavery voices would have been allowed to direct policy in

The original American Revolution eventually produced a wave of
anti-Slavery sentiment in the North, and slavery was not well thought of
in parts of the South, either.  Virginia liberalized its manumission
rules after the Revolution and that freed as many or more slaves as were
freed in any given Northern State.  The Virginia assembly debated
gradual emancipation as late as the 1830s.

== at least that is what I remember from my reading ==

> From: fork-admin@xent.com [mailto:fork-admin@xent.com] On Behalf Of
> Long

> I hadn't meant to imply that they thought
> slavery was wrong, and were worried about
> what the voters would think about it, but
> more that they probably didn't think much
> about it, in the same way that the current
> set of Justices probably doesn't stop much
> to consider how ethical it may be to raise
> cattle with the intent of making them into
> Big Macs.  Sure, some crunchy granola folk
> may have had strong views on the subjects,
> but it's not like there aren't plenty of
> examples of both in the Bible.
> -Dave
> http://xent.com/mailman/listinfo/fork