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In this part we’re going to cover the events leading up to the false freedom of black people in America and the laws created to put us back into slavery after we were freed.
- Emancipation Proclamation
- Black Codes
- Vagrancy Laws
- Cultivating Black Excellence – Check out episode #26
- The Black Hebrew Awakening – Tomorrow
- The Awakening Initiative
- The Awakening Box
- Subscribe on YouTube and Twitter
- 1861 Civil War
- Over the economics of slavery and slavery expansion.
- If you don’t want to keep slaves in the south, then we’ll free all slaves.
- 1863 Emancipation Proclamation
- All persons held as slaves are and henceforth shall be free.
- Civil War ended May 1865
- In December 1865 the 13th Amendment was passed.
“Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
“Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”
“Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed; To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless! And what will ye do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will ye flee for help? and where will ye leave your glory?” – Isaiah 10:1-3
Black Codes – Vagrancy Laws
After the slave codes, then came the Black Codes.
The Black Codes were laws passed by Southern states in 1865 and 1866 in the United States after the American Civil War with the intent and the effect of restricting African Americans’ freedom, and of compelling them to work in a labor economy based on low wages or debt.
- A person that wanders from place to place, homeless, and without regular income.
- 1866 Virginia passed vagrancy laws to take advantage of the loophole created by the 13th Amendment
- Former slaves were not given land, so many were homeless.
- Former slaves were not given jobs with regular income.
- Criminal Association
- Convict Leasing – Prison can sell slave labor to other states.
- Mississippi – black people could only rent within the city.
- Black people were forced to submit proof of employment every January or be arrested and charged $5.
- It was illegal for black people to congregate without permission, which was punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 days and a $50 fine. White people that were caught assembling with them were punished with up to 6 months in prison and $200.
- Custody Laws – Children would be taken and given back to slave masters for labor. They called this “apprenticeship”.
- South Carolina – Convicted black people could be hired out without pay.
- Created a special tax for all black males and unmarried black women.
- Louisiana – Required black workers to present employment release papers to avoid being classified as a fugitive worker.
- Black people had to have written permission to enter a town.
- Could not be out at night without white supervision (curfew laws).
- Could be jailed for being arrogant, cussing, or showing other signs of disobedience.
- Florida – White women couldn’t live with black men.
- Black people could be imprisoned for disrespecting and employer.
- Maryland – Attempted to force children into years of “apprenticeships” to replaced freed black people.
- Texas – Black workers were fined $1 for disobedience and $0.25 per hour of missed work.
- If a black person quit without permission, they lost all of their income.
- Tennessee – Created laws that made black people fully free and equal, but allowed racist law enforcement to disproportionately target black people for arrest.
- Black people were not allowed to serve on juries (no fair trials).
- Adopted new vagrancy laws in 1875
- Kentucky – Black people were arrested, placed on trial with former slave owners as the jury, and forced back into slavery for “keeping a disorderly house”.
- Passed laws preventing people from hunting on Sundays, which was the only day off for black workers.
- All contracts required the presence of a white witness.
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