Britain’s colonial shame: Slave-owners given huge payouts after abolition

The true scale of Britain’s involvement in the slave trade has been laid bare in documents revealing how the country’s wealthiest families received the modern equivalent of billions of pounds in compensation after slavery was abolished.


3 thoughts on “Britain’s colonial shame: Slave-owners given huge payouts after abolition

  1. Andy Hou

    It is mysteriously surprising that Britain could get away with laundering millions upon billions of blood money which benefitted the illustrious wealthy classes that enjoy their luxury off of the skin of African slaves. I don’t understand why in the world would slave owners received a conpensation during the slave abolition. This money should be gone to the former slaves instead for reparation. The offspring of former slave owners in Britain are indeed living on the shame of their ancestors’ misconduct on human equality, for which they should be considered as the most inferior race of people. It is the natural law of inheritance!
    Tragically, the United States isn’t the only country which is responsible for the slave brutality. European nations like Britain, and possibly other countries are fundamentally responsible for bringing about the commencement of slave trade centuries before the birth of the United States. Europeans are inherently responsible for all the subsequent repercussions of slave brutality and enactment due to their infliction on the social status of Africans to the disfranchisement of African Americans in the United States. What do you all think about my statement? Too extreme???

  2. Alice

    The fact that Britain felt the need to pay off those that “lost property” because of slavery abolition shows the extent that slaves were considered property through a whole hearted belief in race ideology. It is interesting to see the connections of the money trail from this time to who has political and/or financial power in the country today. This shows the way that inheriting money (often a white privilege and through paternal lines) has an effect on who has power today and that it is an oppressive action and concept in and of itself. It is oppressive in the fact that the money should have been given to the freed-slaves themselves so that they could then have a foundation for starting separate lives from chattel slavery. It is interesting to imagine what would have happened here in the US if the government gave the freed-slaves money instead of freeing them with NO place to go.

    I agree with your extreme remarks Andy! The only thing I would add is that many other non-European countries have had slavery, but it often looked different then the chattel slavery that Europeans did introduce and then relied upon.

  3. AdamD

    The money given to former slave owners after abolition is similar to something going on today which demonstrates that methods can evolve, but they are rarely ever changed. Today people can sue over things that equate to lost revenue and estimated lost revenue due to lost jobs and other things. What happened immediately after abolition was a governmental tactic to avoid those kinds of suits for compensation of lost revenue by those who were a part of the slave trade.
    If the US government and the British government had paid the survivors of slavery (as brought up by Andy and Alice), it would have sent a different message completely. That message would have been that those who oppress the rights of others should not expect rewards for their tyranny. Had the money gone to former slaves, it may have had a positive effect on some race relations. The problem is that regardless of who the money went to, racial chattel slavery still happened and there would still be that on the back of our minds.


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