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by Peter Moskos

June 27, 2011

"Whoop whoop whoop"

That's the bullshit detector going off after seeing this:

Expert: 40,000 - 50,000 slaves currently in U.S.

How much you wanna bet he just made up that number?

Being exploited for cheap labor does not automatically mean you're a slave.

Have we forgotten what slavery was?

4 comments:

Capt. Jean-Luc Pikachu said...

Funny, was just reading this. 1000+ slaves freed in Florida by sheriffs in 7 major cases over the last 15 years.

Florida's only 1 state.

PCM said...

Those tomato farms in Florida are one of few the places where there have been documented cases of workers being kept in slavery-like condition.

I believe there have been 1,000 worker slaves in America over the past 15 years. That's not good. But it's a lot different that 50,000 slaves right now.

Not to belittle the plight of exploited workers -- it is a serious problem -- but just because your illegal and can't quit your shitty job does not make you a slave.

E said...

1000 detected slaves implies a lot more undetected. And it is not limited to farms. I don't think we do all that much sex slavery here, but a lot of people are kind of weird about the way they treat their domestic help.

As a general rule, if you take the passport of one of your employees--especially an illegal--you are enslaving them.

PCM said...

Taking a worker's passport is exploitative. It is also probably illegal. It even be kidnapping. It is not slavery.

Let's talk slavery for a moment:

Do the worker receive no pay? Does the law consider the worker property of his boss? Can their boss sell the worker to another boss? Can the worker walk away? Can the worker escape without being chased by slave catchers? Are the children of workers slaves by birth?

It is somewhere between absurd and offensive to seriously compare the issue of exploited workers to slavery.

Have we so quickly forgotten what slavery is?

And no, 1,000 detected does not necessarily imply a lot more undetected. By that logic, the more we "free" the more there are "enslaved." And that kind of logic makes my head hurt.