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History the Left Erased: The Founding Fathers Helped Obliterate Slavery

History the Left Erased: The Founding Fathers Helped Obliterate Slavery

Title: History the Left Erased: The Founding Fathers Helped Obliterate Slavery


The history of the United States is marked by countless struggles and achievements, with its Founding Fathers playing an instrumental role in shaping the nation’s values and principles. Unfortunately, as discussions surrounding systemic racism and social justice continue to gain prominence, some segments of society have accused the Founding Fathers of promoting and perpetuating slavery. However, this narrative overlooks their efforts in establishing a framework that ultimately led to the eradication of this abhorrent institution.

A Complex Legacy

It is undeniable that many prominent Founding Fathers, such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison, were slaveholders. Slavery was indeed an integral part of the nation they created. However, it is crucial to analyze their actions within the context of their time.

The Founding Fathers were products of an era where slavery was widely practiced, not only in the United States but across the globe. Many of them personally wrestled with the morality of slavery, recognizing it as a moral evil. Although they failed to eliminate it entirely, they laid the groundwork for its future eradication.

The Founders’ Anti-Slavery Sentiments

Despite being slaveholders themselves, several Founding Fathers expressed their vehement opposition to the institution of slavery. While drafting the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson initially included a passage condemning slavery, criticizing Britain for its involvement in the slave trade. Although this section was eventually omitted due to political compromises, it demonstrates that Jefferson, alongside many others, recognized the hypocrisy of slavery within the broader context of liberty and independence.

Moreover, the Founders’ early attempts to limit and minimize the impact of slavery were notable. The Northwest Ordinance of 1787, championed by Jefferson and signed into law by President Washington, prohibited slavery in the newly acquired Northwest Territory. This marked a significant step towards containing the expansion of slavery in America.

Additionally, prominent figures like Benjamin Franklin and Alexander Hamilton were actively involved in the abolition movement. They founded and supported societies dedicated to the gradual abolition of slavery, further showcasing their commitment to eliminating this glaring contradiction within democratic principles.

The Founding Documents and Their Impact

The U.S. Constitution, often hailed as a cornerstone of American freedom, contains some compromises related to slavery. However, it simultaneously laid the groundwork for its eventual demise. The Constitution established a delicate balance between states with contrasting views on slavery, ensuring unity among the colonies to build a stronger nation capable of addressing slavery’s existence.

Furthermore, the framework of the United States government was designed to be inherently anti-slavery. The principles of freedom, equality, and justice embodied in the Constitution remained fundamental in challenging the institution. The same principles allowed for civil rights movements in the following centuries, paving the way for the eventual abolition of slavery.


While it is vital to acknowledge the flaws and contradictions of the Founding Fathers, it is equally crucial to acknowledge their contributions towards abolishing slavery. Their vision and political maneuvers established a system that allowed for continued progress and growth for future generations. The tensions surrounding the issue of slavery were inherent in a nascent nation grappling with a deeply entrenched institution.

Attempting to erase or downplay the Founding Fathers’ role in addressing slavery oversimplifies the complexities of history and undermines the extensive efforts made by subsequent generations to combat this grave injustice. As we strive for a more just and inclusive society, let us not forget the progress achieved and the potential inherent in the principles handed down by the Founding Fathers.

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