American Gulag

Mark Albertson

37 Russell Street,

Norwalk, Ct. 06855


I therefore hate the corrupt, slaveholding, women-whipping, cradle—plundering, partial and hypocritical Christianity of the land. . .  I look upon it as the climax of all misnomers, the boldest of all frauds, and the grossest of all libels.  Never was there a clearer case of ‘stealing the livery of the court of heaven to serve the devil in.’  I am filled with unutterable loathing when I contemplate the religious pomp and show, together with the horrible inconsistencies, which everywhere surround me.  We have men—stealers for ministers, women-whippers for missionaries, and cradle-plunders for church members.  The man who wields the blood-clotted cowskin during the week fills the pulpit on Sunday, and claims to be a minister of the meek and lowly Jesus. . . .   The slave auctioneer’s bell and the church-going bell chime in with each other, and the bitter cries of the heart-broken slave are drowned in the religious shouts of his pious master.  Revivals of religion and revivals in the slave-trade go hand-in-hand together.  The slave prison and the church stand near each other.  The clanking of fetters and the rattling of chains in the prison, and the pious psalm and solemn prayer in the church, may be heard at the same time.  The dealers in the bodies of men erect their stand in the presence of the pulpit, and they mutually help each other.  The dealer gives his blood-stained gold to support the pulpit, in return, covers his infernal business with the garb of Christianity.  Here we have religion and robbery the allies of each other—devils dressed in angels’ robes, and hell presenting the semblance of paradise. . . .   Frederick Douglas, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas

The pen of Frederick Douglas scores the introduction of this series which will seek to explain  that stain in the American fabric that no detergent of recompense can ever launder . . . that of the brutal bondage of unpaid toilers . . . commencing with the bestial abduction of people from their homeland to their transplantation thousands of miles into an environment totally foreign, only to be consigned to an everlasting purgatory of vassalhood and all the horrors associated with same:  relentless restraint, swaggering racism, and a plethora of malevolent discourtesies wielded and practiced by a people of the most jaundiced variety; a people who during the War Between the States came to profess themselves as the champions of States Rights and the precepts of the American blueprint for representative government known as the Constitution; but, who in the end, practiced a system of perverted suppression that relegated elements of their fellow Man to the depths of unbridled servitude.

Week 1:  The Ediface of Cottonism

Dutch traders brought the first twenty blacks to Jamestown in 1619.  The resulting slave trade brought an estimated 11,000,000 blacks from Africa to the New World, to labor and die as bondsman in Central and South America, the Caribbean and North America.  Focus, though, will be on the development of Slavery in North America and growth Agrarian Capitalism in the Antebellum South, from 1619 to 1860.

Week 2:  The American Gulag

The social and economic backdrop of the Slaveocracy; and, the political primacy enjoyed by America’s Landed Gentry known as the Southern Aristocracy.  This session will explain the slave and the social structure of the South, and, the significance of the unpaid toiler’s contribution to the economic primacy of the plantation.  Included, too, the hypocrisy of the notion of the Confederacy as representative of States Rights and the Constitution while keeping elements of their fellow man in perpetual bondage.

Week 3:  The Moses of the Abolitionists

Such was the nickname of Harriet Tubman.  An abolitionist of the most ardent variety, and who herself, had escaped the bondsman’s lash and who repeatedly returned to the Slaveocracy from which she had flown to lead those seeking to be free of the chains of servitude.  A courageous lady who led Union troops behind Confederate lines in guerrilla fashion to undermine a system contrary to the precepts of humanity; and, who later would become an ardent suffragette.

Week 4:  God Did Not Make Men of One Blood

Attempts to explain the second class citizenship of the Black Man.  Begins with the death of slavery with the defeat of the Confederate Revolution in 1865.  The advent of Jim Crow; demise of Reconstruction; the brutal racial hygiene in the former Confederacy; the Civil Rights movement. . .  - Norwalk community college