Opressed, Robbed and Degraded

“Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.” ~Frederick Douglass African American slavery in the United States was abolished in the 1860’s when the Emancipation Proclamation was signed by Abraham Lincoln. Slavery today in Mauritania is denying its citizens their rights and this can not be brooked. Slaves are made to live and work in impoverished conditions with limited education against their desire. We as citizens of a global world, are being ignorant when we allow 150,000 people in Mauritania to be enslaved. Frederick Douglass spoke and wrote to abolish slavery in the United States, the world needs someone to step forward and be the voice for the Mauritanian citizens who are slaves today.

When the U.S was founded, white male property owners were very much empowered over others, especially African Americans. African Americans in the South were purchased as property. They picked cotton on plantations to no avail and with no compensation. Like Frederick Douglass, some slaves had the ability to escape their owners, while more than a million others were not freed until the 13th Amendment was passed in 1865, stating that all slaves in the South were freed.

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These African Americans were rapturous for their newly found rights and freedom. Today slaves in Mauritania are often procured through kidnappings and their own vulnerability caused by poverty. They are sundered away from their families and are predominantly used as workers in shops, cafes and restaurants. Some people barter with their master to try to get something in return for their duties. For example, in exchange for labor they might receive meals or a shelter to stay in. The people here in Mauritania continue to fall into a cycle of poverty and even if attempted only small amounts of people are able to escape it.

Frederick Douglass was one of the hundreds of slaves that were able to learn how to read and write during the 1850s. The masters of this time were debasing the lives of their slaves because of the fact that they were given no value beyond the work they were given. If these African Americans learned how to read and write, it was either from them teaching themselves secretly or if they had an extremely humane master who would give them lessons. They were like “silent angels” no one knew they were teaching the slaves and that they were doing a very good deed. People in Mauritania are also robbed of their right to an education. Some special churches in these areas give lessons on how to read and write to the people of the area.

Many people in our world take having a home and food for granted, while certain people in our world today aren’t even able to read and write. Receiving an education is a human right. We are obligated to do something to help these people. We need to get this situation solved and free the 150,000 enslaved Mauritanians. These Mauritanian men and women are living in dreadful conditions and are neglected.

Justice is being denied in this area of the world. If someone was to come forward and act the part of a “silent angel” for the myriad of enslaved Mauritanians, we could begin to put a stop to slavery in many countries around the world. One person speaking out loudly, like Frederick Douglass, can reverberate and have a ripple effect causing others to speak out too. Overall today, there are 29.8 million people who are victims of slavery. Everyday more and more people find themselves oppressed, robbed of their rights and degraded.

This problem is not immutable and it can be changed. I know you are aware of the problems in Mauritania, so why haven’t you taken a stand and done something to help these people out?