Thomas Jefferson

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Thomas Jefferson
When Americans think of pillar s of freedom in early American history Thomas Jefferson has to come to mind. He wrote the declaration of Independence stating “all men are created equally.” This equality was regardless of wealth, birth, or status, further the government is not a person’s master but the other way around. Still Jefferson owned hundreds of slaves all his life. Why was there an inconsistency with what he said and what he practiced in his own affairs? While he abhorred slavery he still believed that blacks were inferior to whites both physically and mentally. In essence his owning slaves was in eye a bit of charity to the them.
Jefferson wanted to abolish slavery. He included in the declaration of Independence “a stinging indictment of George III for trafficking in slavery”, however congress edited this out of the declaration after Georgia and South Carolina objected. Later as President he outlawed the further importation of new slaves to the country. The trade continued anyway but in the black market. Still the question remains why did Jefferson not free the slaves he already had? In addition, while other slave owners such as George Washington freed their slaves upon their deaths Jefferson only freed seven of his slaves. Why did he not follow Washington’s example? He never intended the “free men” to include women, blacks or Indians. While he disagreed with the idea of slavery he did purchase about 20 slaves, many times to unite a couple. However appallingly, he also purposely bought women as a means to grow his slave work force through reproduction. According to the website , Jefferson did not believe that a freed slave would be able to support and care for themselves in ...

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...g. He thought he was doing his slaves a favor.

Works Cited

Kennedy, David & Cohen, Lizabeth. The American Pageant. Boston, MA: Wadsworth, 2013. Print.
Malone, Dumas. “Thomas Jefferson, A Brief Biography”. Thomas Jefferson Foundation. 1993. Print. 9 March 2014. “Thomas Jefferson Biography” A+E television networks LLC. 2013. Print. 9 March 2014. Selfa, Lance. “Slavery and the origins of racism” International Socialist Review. December 2002. Print. 10 Dec 2014. “American President: A Refercene Resource” University Of Virginia. 2013. Print. 10 March 2014.
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