The problem with calling slavery America's 'original sin' by nooses

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· @nooses ·
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The problem with calling slavery America's 'original sin'
> *“Original sin, in Christian doctrine, the condition or state of sin into which each human being is born; also, the origin (i.e., the cause, or source) of this state. Traditionally, the origin has been ascribed to the sin of the first man, Adam, who disobeyed God in eating the forbidden fruit (of knowledge of good and evil) and, in consequence, transmitted his sin and guilt by heredity to his descendants.”*
— https://www.britannica.com/topic/original-sin

“America’s original sin” is a phrase often used to refer to the historical institution of slavery in the U.S. As a Jew, I have always objected to the interjection of this Christian theological term, “original sin,” into discussions about race relations. And I further object to it because it is used to denigrate the United States as an inherently sinful, if not irredeemable, nation. 

If you delve deeply into the history of Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas, you will find a myriad of tales of slaughter and subjugation, enslavement and oppression. For thousands of years, slavery was a world-wide phenomenon. The United States shares in that ugly history with many other nations.

While preparing to write my own post in opposition to the use of the term “original sin” as applied to slavery, I came across a short opinion piece by James Goodman, a Rutgers University historian. I don’t agree with all of it, but it is learned, thoughtful, provocative, and well worth reading.


![https://edition.cnn.com/2021/02/16/opinions/dont-call-slavery-americas-original-sin-goodman/index.html](https://files.peakd.com/file/peakd-hive/nooses/EpGRkGdYydErsKYbBDW3zT3JKFVKVTZkeYYHoFuatcdsKK3ECVGv7GAF7PhGmNn3ktC.png)
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