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Arkansas Senator calls slavery "a necessary evil" - showing how the United States is plagued by institutional racism at the highest levels of government

Cotton is trying to whip up a frenzy over a movement to teach our history without glossing over enslavement of millions of Africans who were sold into slavery in Africa and brought to the US in the 17th to 19th centuries. Many died on the journey. Cotton implied that commercial enslavement "was a necessary evil" suggests that enslavement of millions of Americans still is an option, a scary admission about capitalism which should be understood as having contemporary relevance.

Human Trafficking and Slavery: Towards a New Framework for Prevention and Responsibility

By Dana S. Hathaway "Human trafficking and slavery are horrific crimes that require strict penalties for perpetrators and effective protections for survivors, but these crimes are in part facilitated by a system of laws and norms that effectively marginalize certain populations—the “unskilled” migrant. In this thesis I aim to reexamine and reinterpret the problem of human trafficking and slavery in a way that highlights the background conditions to the problem. - - - I argue that the framework used as a conceptual foundation for addressing the problem limits the scope of responsibility. Specifically, the framework fails to acknowledge structural contributing factors I show to be relevant: law, policy, and norms impacting immigration and migrant labor. I assert that the limited scope of responsibility, which focuses heavily on direct perpetrators of the crime, leaves largely unexamined the role of social-structural processes in contributing to the problem. I use the United States as a case study in order to provide a targeted analysis of social-structural processes that contribute to the problem. In this examination of the United States, I focus on agricultural and domestic slavery."