International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition, Saint-Domingue

Hundreds of years of African slavery have been whittled down by most of the world as 'that thing most wished forgotten'. However, on Friday the 23rd of August, 2013, those who will never forget took the time to remember a past that still colors the present on the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade.


Imagining what months spent on board a rocking ship along the middle passage was like is thrown into sharp context when the diagram of the slave ship the Brookes is shown, and one is hard-pressed to remain unmoved when remembering the 142 thrown overboard to make way for water during the Zong massacre. However, as many focus on the tales of the horrors, the indignities and the atrocities that prevailed then, what should not be forgotten is the way in which the slave trade ended.

While the world remembers the struggles of the slaves, remember too the efforts of abolitionists like Granville Sharp, Olaudah Equiano and William Wilberforce whose insights, influence and inspired words helped bring the message of black liberty to an ignorant white world. Remember the fight of slaves within countries like Haiti, where, in 1791, a rebellion took place that would give courage to other Caribbean nations to take their God-given right to freedom in hand.

These efforts should be actively remembered because, while the hundreds of years of slavery are important, the great effort made by the weak and oppressed to put an end to it, after hundreds of years of thinking there was no end in sight, is even more emphatic a telling of the worth of a black man.

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