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Beating up Senator Sumner. An Anniversary.

May 22, 2017



Today is the anniversary of one of the things that definitely helped start the American Civil War.  And Andrew Jackson wasn’t around to prevent it.  A beating.

Of course, slavery was all about savage beatings.  Enforcing a system of lifelong hereditary servitude demanded the regular exercise of theatrical terror.  Slaves were beaten on a regular basis wherever slavery was maintained.  But many in the North had become pretty immune to accounts (and there were very many) of dark skinned people having their skin removed and remained tolerant of the institution of slavery within their polity until one day when a very prominent white guy got beaten up by a slave owner.

The white guy was Massachusetts Senator Sumner, a man who could claim to be perhaps the most consistently anti-racist federally elected white guy elected in the USA in the nineteenth-century.  Now Sumner hated slavery, justifiably enough, and hated it with…

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