“Africans sold Africans to whites,” Yes, and so what? That doesn’t absolve or even water down the culpability of the white slavers.”
Well they also sold them to other Africans and to Arabs, but that is a giant straw man isn’t it: Nobody on this thread has suggested that white slavers should be absolved. It was just pointed out to you that slavery was not simply a black / white issue. Black people did it too.
“If two people rob a bank, the 1st robber isn’t less guilty just because there was also a 2nd robber.”
“And what sets American slavery apart is that it was basically industrialized by and into the capitalist system and turned into brutal chattel slavery:”
The slave industry, capitalism and chattel slavery all predate the trans-Atlantic slave trade.
The African Kingdoms were built on industrialised slavery long before any white people showed up and they remained so after Europeans had abolished slavery everywhere they controlled. The Mali Empire in particular sold slaves all over the continent and herded them to slave ports on the horn of Africa for export across the Middle East and as far away as India. The Niger River was a major slave trading route and the centre of Songai was the largest slave trading centre in the world; all long before white people showed up. One of the justifications commonly used by European colonists during the so called “scramble for Africa” in the late 1800s was the abolition of slavery which had long been abolished across Europe already.
Slavery was often justified by race with the race to be enslaved being cast as inferior or not completely human by the slavers. This happened across Africa and the Middle East too. But it was just an excuse used to rationalise committing crimes against people. It was never the reason. The reason was always greed. If the people of West Africa had been white, then trans-Atlantic slavers would simply have found some other distinguishing feature to use to de-humanise them instead. Dehumanisation is always a feature of slavery just as it is of war propaganda, but it does not necessarily revolve around race.
In America the obvious difference between the slaves and the slavers was race, so race was used as the feature for dehumanisation in America rather than tribal origin, caste, or ethnicity, as was generally used in Africa. Race was also used in the Middle East because of the obvious differences in appearance between Arabs and the black African slaves or the white Slavic slaves they took from Ukraine and the Balkans.
Slavery was not unique to any particular race or to any particular religion. The claim that Christians invented racism is silly. I can give you plenty of examples of systemic racism that had nothing to do with Christians if you like. Your knowledge of both slavery and history in general is hugely lacking.
“It’s wrong, it’s always been wrong, and it isn’t any less wrong for having been around for a long time.”
Of course its wrong. Nobody is trying to suggest otherwise. You are the one trying to qualify it by seeming to imply that it was really only wrong when white people did it or that white people were somehow more guilty than any other race for doing something that all other races also did. Slavery has been a feature of human societies since the dawn of human history. White people did not invent it. They did engage in it too. But they also were the first people to wipe it out on a large scale.
The rabid colonisation of Africa which began near the end of the 19th century heralded the end of slavery in Africa, not the beginning of it. Likewise the British, French and Russian colonisation of the Middle East.
“White people stopped slavery” In some cases, yes, but you don’t get credit for ending the atrocities that you started.”
White people did not start it. The first Portuguese traders to ship slaves from West Africa across the Atlantic were simply tapping into an African slave industry that was already centuries old. They did so in co-operation with the powerful African Kingdom of Dahomey in present day Benin. Claiming that white people started it is just nonsense.
“And without white people, they wouldn’t have been forced to exhaust themselves under the skin flaying whip picking cotton in the first place.
Not cotton no: They would have been picking other crops or doing other labours instead, but they still would have had had to endure skin flaying and worse. The African slaves which were transported for sale in the Americas were enslaved by Africans. Had they not been transported to America then they would have still been slaves, most likely in either Africa or somewhere in the Arab world. The one place they most certainly would not have ended up was Europe. Rich Europeans for the most part, had paid servants rather than slaves, considering slavery to be a barbaric practise.
“Before you get all excited by the idea of all the great things white colonizers did for Africa, local economies suffered tremendously as a result of trade and domination by white colonizers:”
Local societies has always been colonised. Before the Europeans colonised Africa it was usually a case of Europeans being colonised by other Europeans; and Africans being colonised by other Africans or Arabs. So it had been for centuries. When for example the French began to land in West Africa and moved rapidly inland, they were supported by many of the subjugated African tribes who wanted to overthrow their horrifically brutal oppressors. It was a case of — meet the new boss; not quite as bad as the old one.
Africans were not stupid as you seem to cast them. They understood very well that the French were not there to be their friends. They understood full well that the French had come to expand their empire and steal resources. Africans understood what colonialism was because they had been subjected to it by their own African empires for centuries. But they also understood that the French would abolish slavery (which they did) and would abolish the caste system and the customs of blood sports and mass human sacrifice.
The French promptly did all of that and their actions freed hundreds of thousands of Africans from a lifetime of subjugation and worse.
Black, brown, and native peoples are to this day harassed, killed, and exploited in ways I really wish you would consider and recognize as real:”
Yes they are. That happens mostly in Africa and the Middle East. The mass, slaughter in Sudan; the ethnic and religious savagery in Nigeria; the butchery in Syria; Slavery in Saudi; the Rwandan genocide: Your view of the world and your selective historical revisionism, and your insistence in looking at everything through a black and white lens is driven by your own racism. The reality is that inhumanity does not have a skin colour. It is usually driven by greed and power, and whether you like it or not, the reality is that the Europeans and Americans, though never innocent, finally embraced humanitarian principles and set about doing more to combat that inhumanity than anyone else in history, which is why Europe and America today are the most tolerant and safest places to live, no matter what colour you are.
European colonisers committed crimes too and their promises of justice and the rule of law were often not delivered, but I would take a French colonial governor over an African king any time, because the French and the British brought with them the principles or human rights and the rule of law which would have been alien concepts in Africa and much of the rest of the world at the time. Those principles originated in the European enlightenment and had nothing to do with skin colour. You cherry-pick pieces of history where black people were oppressed by white people and you ignore the broad sweep of history which is a lot more complicated than that.
That is just pure dishonesty driven by your racist need to cast white people as uniquely evil. I on the other hand am not a racist and I do have a very good knowledge of history. I understand that people are people and they have the capacity for either good or evil no matter what colour they are.
I suggest if you want to talk about these issues then it might benefit your credibility to educate yourself about African history and the history of slavery both pre and post colonisation.
A good place to start would be “The Scramble for Africa” by Thomas Pakenham.