Socialist Worker

Frederick Douglass on William Wilberforce

Issue No. 2043

Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

“When Wilberforce came forward, public attention became directed to the matter.

“Ten times did he introduce a bill for the abolition of the slave trade, and ten times was it doomed to defeat – parliament sometimes laying the matter on the table, and at other times giving it an indefinite postponement.

“Convinced that justice, that humanity, that all nature was on his side, believing that by perseverance he would succeed, he went on with his good work.

“And what do we see take place within half a century? We see the slave trade, which was sanctioned by all Christians, is now nearly regarded as not only improper, but as piracy, and the men caught at it are hung up at the yard-arm.”

Frederick Douglass, former slave and revolutionary US abolitionist in a speech delivered in Paisley, Scotland, 17 April 1846.

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