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GG
Calls are growing in the Scottish media for Glasgow to apologise for its alleged historical inks to the slavery. Although the city – unlike some English cities – had no direct involvement in the slave trade, supporters of a call for Glasgow to apologise claim that the city benefited because the 'Tobacco Lords' accumulated wealth as a result of slavery.

Last week, Chris Dolan, a Scottish author who has written a book about white workers on Caribbean plantations, said that a public apology by Glasgow for its connections to the slave trade "would be beneficial". Mr Dolan claimed that a Glasgow apology would indicate that the city is willing to own up to its history, adding that the upcoming Commonwealth games in the city in 2014 would be the perfect platform to stage an apology.

Later in the week, the Glaswegian comedienne Elaine C Smith added her voice to a growing number calling for an apology from Glasgow. Baillieston-born Ms Smith said that she had been moved to speak after watching the film Lincoln in the cinema. The former Rab C Nesbitt star added:

QUOTE
"Half of Glasgow was built on the back of slavery [...] Confessing to our past as a nation is also important in the run-up to the referendum, which to me is all about becoming a grown-up country that's as good and as bad as other nations in the world, rather than the beatific one that's apart from all others.

We need to get out of that collective permanent adolescence, where we always blame our parents for everything. I think an apology would show we are a nation ready to look at itself and acknowledge what we were responsible for. Imagine what kind of country we might have become had Robert Burns gone to manage the plantations."

Other voices have since joined the call for Glasgow to apologise, although some commentators prefer to point to the prominent role Glaswegians played in the eventual abolition of the slave trade. Still others say that an apology would be pointless and achieve nothing.

GG.
Strangelove
To what end? All it accomplishes is allowing some douche bags, suffering from White Guilt, to feel good.
norrie123
Its not something that I feel guilty of

No doubt right enough, Slavery was evil


What next, should we apologise for all the sins of previous generations?

Bye for now, norrie
tarheels
HEAR HEAR RIELLY , TARHEELS CHEERS ALL
Guest
Apologise for something I had nothing to do with, don't think so. The government apologising for its role in Slavery, fine go ahead, but I would never agree with Slavery in the first place so should not apologise for something I haven't done, wouldn't do or condone anyone or Nation doing. So again I say why should the normal person be apologised for?
Irene Ka
What is the point of an apology from people who are generations removed from the actual situation? The only apology that would have any value is if the people who were the perpetrators of the crime where the ones making the apology. We can only go forward by behaving in an appropriate way in the society that we now live and making sure that anything akin to this type of behavior never happens again. That is much better than an apology from those who have no real connection to the events.

Of course, it is part of the history of Glasgow and Scotland and should be recorded as such - good or bad.
methane
While slavery is abhorent. I don't see the point unless we also apologised for the other things such as treatment of Italian and Irish immigrants at various times in the past. Scotland should also apologise for its role in the opium trade through Jardine Mathieson. I think it's really attention seeking?
Guest
Chris Dolan is absolutely correct.

He is not asking individuals living in Glasgow today to apologise. He is asking Glasgow as a city and Scotland as a mature nation to acknowledge the role we played at that time in the misery of slavery.

Much of Glasgow's wealth was built on slavery.
27stowst
So are we to apologise to all the weans who died cleaning chimneys, or down pits, killed in accidents in the factories???? In this country!! We have evolved and I don't feel the need to excuse my ancestors deeds. It certainly wasn't the common man who reaped the benefit of slavery. Of course it was inhumane but my own mother was 'in service'. Who will apologise to her descendants? My uncle died in WWI. Pretty heinous I think. But not looking for an apology, just hoping for no more war.
DavidT
People in various parts of the world (africa included) got rich on the immoral slave trade. The 'tobacco' barons of Glasgow made a fortune from it. Apologising for history serves no purpose. Where would it end? The guilty are dead and gone.
If modern people would allow it to happen again then maybe they should apologise.
I voted no.
seadog
Slavery was legal back then.
Kassy
I agree what is in the past is over with and dig it up to say sorry would not benefit anything.

If you have to apologize for everything that our Ancestors have done you could fill a library on it.

Leave things alone or you end up festering on them and we all no were that leads.
Jupiter
Ive no doubt Glasgow and in particular the wealthy speculators and entrepreneurs hailing from the city were up to their necks in the slave trade and the transportation trade when owners quickly transferred slave ships to prison ships.
The misery and suffering inflicted on untold numbers is well documented.An insidious chapter in British,Scottish and indeed Glasgow history.
Caribeann countries have vast numbers of people with Scottish surnames,eg Grant,Gordon,McDonald,Graham,Stewart to name but a few.
But an apology? Who would be the person to do the apologising?How would it come about? At a gathering of athletes at the Commonwealth two bob Games? And what if the apology is rejected?
Oh,Oh, egg on face! Finally what about the other big country whose tobacco and cotton fields were populated by slaves brought to their shores by Scottish ships ? Sorry America.
I often wonder how these ideas take root?
As a Glaswegian my view it has happened,its regretable but it cannot be undone or mitigated by an apology.

medevial
If someone has a guilt that requires a good scratching, then help another of their choice, in the present. Apologizing for "past wrongs" has no historical or current value. Everyone could apologize for something they've done, and in turn, could be the recipient of apologies from others - the list is endless. The same could be said for cities and countries for that matter. This consideration ignores the historical context of slavery which cannot be altered by unproductive, redundant utterances.
Dylan
We can not go through life apologising for old mistakes and refighting ancient battles.

The time is now.

Move on. !!!
Guest
So does Eve have to apologise to Adam for giving him a bite of her apple.

LOL
Jim D
Having read several reviews of this book - Redlegs, I would think Glasgow would then have to apologise to our fellow Scots women, who were exported to the plantations with the view of trying to attract white men to the plantations.

Personally, I think Mr Dolan is doing some self-publicity.
john.mcn
No, now i'm no history buff and there's probably far more knowledgeable people here when it comes to the history of 'Glasgow' but at the time of 'the slave trade'* Glasgow was far far smaller than what we call it now. To say 1/2 of Glasgow was built on the slave trade may have been true at that time but it is now a far bigger place and it's borders extend far further than they did even at the end of the 19th century.
Anyway if Glasgow should apologise because of guilt by association then why stop there, apologise for child labour making Nike trainers for sale in our shops, hell apologise for that collapsed building because Primark clothes get made there, i'm sure once we start there will be others ashamed at their colour/race/nationality/sex etc who want everyone to apologise for everything . Hell my ancestors were jacobites who from what i was told were treated quite harsh after 1745, where is my apology and while you're at it a nice big fat cheque for all my hurt feelings wink.gif

* i put that there because slavery was here long before that period in time its commonly referred to, and it was here after it's apparent abolition, hell it's probably still going on, if sorry is to be said for anything it's for there not being enough done to stop it now.
campsie
Why should Glasgow apologise for her part in the slave trade, did not the whole of the Britain gain through the trade of slavery. Yes Slavery was an abomination an not only Glasgow but all the countries involved in slavery should apologise for their part in the slave trade no matter how small, so in effect most of the world has apologises to make. Appallingly slavery is still in existence today only it is done secretively, unlike the days of the great plantation owners. The slave trade's tentacles reached far and wide, and there are few nations where it's effects did not touch them. There should be a universal agreement for a world wide apology for Slavery.
john.mcn
QUOTE (Jim D @ 29th Apr 2013, 09:44pm) *
Having read several reviews of this book - Redlegs, I would think Glasgow would then have to apologise to our fellow Scots women, who were exported to the plantations with the view of trying to attract white men to the plantations.
Personally, I think Mr Dolan is doing some self-publicity.

I watched a youtube about the redlegs of the caribbean, the indentured looked like they were treated at times worse than slaves because the landowners were happy to just get a few years out of them while the slaves were property and they wanted a lifetimes work out of them.
*Paulie*
I suspect Mr. Dolan is attempting to drill up some publicity for his book, very clever ploy.

An apology would be pointless, who would one apologize to? Oprah?

Do you think the descendants of these slaves even know where Glasgow is, let alone expect an apology ?

I hope Mr. Dolan will write another book...about the terrible conditions suffered by generations of my Glasgow family who lived in rat-infested tenements, and worked at menial jobs for pittance wages.

Glaswegians of the past survived so much hardship,it's no wonder they're a tough people who've prospered in other lands, without expecting handouts or apologies, they just got on with it and seized opportunities that were presented. O.K. off my soapbox now!

Answer NO.
taurus
The whole of Britain got rich on some form of slavery,the men down the pits,working for a pittance,the shipyards,the factories,servants in the big estates. The list is endless. Man`s inhumanity to man.It always was and will be.
The Callands Rebel
As a Virginian, I can say unequivocally that this issue of apologizing for slavery here in the USA or England or Scotland is a crock of crap.

You'd think the so called afro-americans were the only people enslaved since the beginning of man.

My great grandfather never own a black before or during our civil War, but he damn sure took out any invading army man of a tyrannical Union government for 4 years who set foot in Virginia.

Our counterparts the Sons of Union VeteranS will tell you "their greats didn't come South to free any Black but to MAINTAIN THE UNION"

I can also relay that the Glasgow city council and city Fathers have shrugged me off many many times to acknowledge "NATIVE GLASGOWMeN who fought for the Confederacy when we placed our markers on their graves, they are as shallow as our officials and only use issues like this for self interests.

So, I won't e surprised when the Glasgow council issues aN "APOLOGY" for slavery.

Thatcher and Lincoln would make a great duo, though from a different Era.
gillen4
Having read the responses to this issue, it's clear we're all of one (sensible) mind! WE in Glasgow now, had no control over slavery then, hence we were not responsible for it. Slavery, as it was then, was abolished. It stopped and we learned from it. That's reparation. Too many real issues today to be dealt with...energies better invested in those I would think.
Jazzsaxman
It's in the past. Get over it. Probably some descendants trying to screw us for money and this is the way to get their foot in the door.. Politicians do what you were voted in to do and stop wasting our money, bunch of freeloaders anyway.
*gerry*
Apologies for our Past Fathers sins? We`d be here all Year,the Past is Dead and Buried We the present generation have got nothing to apologies for apart maybe for letting in the Tory`s.
droschke7
I 'm pretty sure that most intelegent people will agree that a very few rich people profitted on the proceeds of Tobacco but not Glasgow as such. At the time when this happened the majority of Scots actually had a life that was as bad if not worse than the so called Black Slaves. No one says anything about the white slaves and those who were called dindentured who had to work as a slave to repay their debts. The people who actually started the slave trade were Arabs and African Chiefs. Many slaves were captured prisoners of war from intertribal wars in Africa also if you annoyed the chief he would sell you to the next Arab slave trader he saw to earn money for himnself. I don't see African chiefs or Arabs appologizing to the ancestors of slaves so why should we? Justa by not the slave trade was abolished in the UK in 1807, anyone know somebody still alive from then?
Toni
QUOTE (Jazzsaxman @ 29th Apr 2013, 06:56pm) *
It's in the past. Get over it. Probably some descendants trying to screw us for money and this is the way to get their foot in the door.. Politicians do what you were voted in to do and stop wasting our money, bunch of freeloaders anyway.

I so agree with you. I'm sick of those wanting to re-write History to fit in with this idiotic PC world of today.

And don't get me started on those whose ancestors were (supposed to have been) a part of the Highland Clearances. They hold huge chips on their shoulders to this day. They have never ever stepped foot in Scotland (or anywhere else in the UK) yet the bash the English to the point where it would come to blows if face to face. I have at least 1/3 English heritage, 3/4 Scots and am married to an Englishman. It never bothered my Scots friends & neighbours when I lived in Scotland .. so why does it bother a person on the other side of the world who is several generations removed? Why do they feel they have the right to insult me, due to me having a partial English heritage and an English husband?

As you said, it's in the past. Leave it there!
Old Sailor
QUOTE (Guest @ 29th Apr 2013, 01:24pm) *
Chris Dolan is absolutely correct.

He is not asking individuals living in Glasgow today to apologise. He is asking Glasgow as a city and Scotland as a mature nation to acknowledge the role we played at that time in the misery of slavery.

Much of Glasgow's wealth was built on slavery.

Another academic who has discovered God!
Old Sailor
Let us bow to another academic who has found God!
davidhendry
Slavery is obviously wrong, to our way of thinking. It wasn't always so. We had our own people transported. Any apologies? Never, they were transported by the great, the good and, obviously the rich. Their descendents are still around and still wield power.

The African slave trade was an Arab industry. The people were already enslaved when bought. Not that this alters anything, but we Brits must shake off the guilt of believing we're responsible for all that ails the world.

Mr. Dolan made a smart move, eh !!!

Davie.



Dave Grieve
Does anybody hear the Black descendents of the present owners of the Carribean islands apologizing for grabbing these islands after the native Indian population were exterminated. An act of Genocide in any language in which the slaves took part and a much bigger crime against humanity than slavery will ever be.

The descendents of Black slaves living in America today should go down on their knees and thank God for the fact that their ancestors were taken as slaves in the first place.

As for all the hand wringers if you really want to do something about the horrors of slavery in the present day why don't you start putting pressure on the moslem goverments of the world to put a stop to it, it still goes on and will never stop as it is ingrained in their cultural way of life.
Doug1
QUOTE (davidhendry @ 30th Apr 2013, 04:54am) *
Slavery is obviously wrong, to our way of thinking. It wasn't always so. We had our own people transported. Any apologies? Never, they were transported by the great, the good and, obviously the rich. Their descendents are still around and still wield power.

The African slave trade was an Arab industry. The people were already enslaved when bought. Not that this alters anything, but we Brits must shake off the guilt of believing we're responsible for all that ails the world.

Mr. Dolan made a smart move, eh !!!

Davie.

Good post David. A lot of people may not realise that the Arab slave trade was huge and had been going on for centuries and indeed although I could be wrong here but were the Arabs not partly responsible for supplying slaves to the Western slave traders !!
davidhendry
QUOTE (Doug1 @ 30th Apr 2013, 07:37am) *
Good post David. A lot of people may not realise that the Arab slave trade was huge and had been going on for centuries and indeed although I could be wrong here but were the Arabs not partly responsible for supplying slaves to the Western slave traders !!

What even more people don't realise, is the trade is alive and well even today. In my travels in the Middle East I met several slaves. All over the Arab world you'll see negro Arabs. All descendents of slaves.

In India they have the same shit but it's called bonded labour. Children are given to secure a loan which, surprise, surprise never gets paid off. Ever. Met a family of four working a field. The landlord ALLOWED them to eat any rats they caught.

Both the east and west coasts of Africa were heavily trafficked by the Arabs. Until very recently Zanzibar was a possession of Oman.

Davie.
Scotsman
It was not done in my name and the hand wringers cannot apologise in my name either. The greedy tobacco barons got all the money and mostly they kept it.... the ordinary people of Glasgow never saw any of the wealth!!

And what about our workers who worked as wage slaves in the worst conditions in the industrial world and who lived short and horrid existences making money for the barons. What about them?? Is there going to be an apology to them??

Slavery was possible only because of the Arabs and the African chiefs who took part for their own greedy reasons. And what about the million Europeans who were sold into the slave trade in North Africa. You dont read much about them because it is not PC but instead we are told that we should all feel guilty for the acts of a few selfish and greedy robber barons hundreds of years ago. Aye right!!
Doug1
Yes David you are of course quite right. In the wider context of slavery, where on earth do you begin. It's a huge industry which takes in human trafficking, selling women and children into slavery and so on. We often see in our own newspapers about families employing slave labour in their own houses. Eastern Europe is awash with human trafficking. Another thread I think !!
*greta*
Didnt think the tory government had abolished slavery the way they tax the ordinary working man in this country. Time to move on ,we are a multiracial society now as any decent new world country should be.
james hill
Why should present Glasgow apologise for slavery all those years ago? They never seem to mention the good things that was left behind. I think we have already repaid any dues. (Non-stop aid!)
jimmystreet
Whilst slavery is an evil, it still goes on today in various formats throughout the world. I do not expect an apology from the Italians or the Scandanavians for the actions of their countries in the past. The dynamics of the world and peoples behaviour towards one another is continually evolving and we should look for improvement. Whilst there are lessons to be learnt from the past, living in it, dwelling on it and continually going over it does nothing but create an industry out of oppression, guilt and fear, with people profiting from the misery of others. Great cities like Glasgow and Britain should be proud of their past and what we brought to the worlds stage. The good far outweighed the bad
john.mcn
QUOTE (*greta* @ 30th Apr 2013, 09:29am) *
Didnt think the tory government had abolished slavery the way they tax the ordinary working man in this country. Time to move on ,we are a multiracial society now as any decent new world country should be.

So the ones that aren't multi racial aren't decent ?

Why must ...i was going to say Europe but it's white countries, anyway why must 'white' countries strive to be multi racial when looking round the world you'll find lots of countries that are closed off to the mass experiment 'multiculturalism' or as it's now re-branded diversity. Are they opening their borders to hundreds of thousands of immigrants a year, i very much doubt it.
Mathieson
What a load of self-seeking nonsense from Mr Dolan and Ms Smith. One with a book to sell and the other with a reputation of professional bleeding-heart lefty to live up to.

Let both of them apologise to their hearts' content if they so wish but don't do it in my name.
droschke7
Are the English going to appologise to Australia, the US, Canada and Scotland? Why do you think so many Australians , Americans and Canadians have Scottish names?
Jupiter
drosschke7, Ive missed your point in that post.
Jack Russell
Don't be silly - how far are we going to go back apologising for past wrongs performed by countries - how about the Japanese apologising for their treatment of POWs in WWII - or the Vikings for pillaging Scotland and on and on - how about apologising to the children - some under 12 being misused (chimney sweeps etc.) in the 18th Century. Stop it now!!!!!
droschke7
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 30th Apr 2013, 03:06pm) *
drosschke7, Ive missed your point in that post.

The point is that the English transported people to Australia, Canada, the US and even Ireland who didn't want to go but were forced to by the English Landowners and the Legal system at the time, and many were indentured and forced to work as "White Slaves" in the colonies or sent there as prisoners for "stealing a loaf of bread to feed the family"and then treated as slaves for years sometimes decades. Don't get me wrong the French, the Dutch, the Portuguese, the Italians and the Germans did the same thing, no apology's there yet either. My point is White Slavery also existed not just Black Slavery. It's almost like the Holocaust. The Holocaust did happen but it wasn't just 6 million Jews that died, 21 million Russians died and many million Germans amongst many others were also killed by the Nazi's, no apology for them either.
Jupiter
OK
Scotsman
QUOTE (droschke7 @ 30th Apr 2013, 03:20pm) *
The point is that the English transported people to Australia, Canada, the US and even Ireland who didn't want to go but were forced to by the English Landowners and the Legal system at the time, and many were indentured and forced to work as "White Slaves" in the colonies or sent there as prisoners for "stealing a loaf of bread to feed the family"and then treated as slaves for years sometimes decades. Don't get me wrong the French, the Dutch, the Portuguese, the Italians and the Germans did the same thing, no apology's there yet either. My point is White Slavery also existed not just Black Slavery. It's almost like the Holocaust. The Holocaust did happen but it wasn't just 6 million Jews that died, 21 million Russians died and many million Germans amongst many others were also killed by the Nazi's, no apology for them either.

Well said droschke!! And many of the people who were shipped were not even guilty of stealing a loaf of bread but just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time or were a nuisance to some wealthy or powerful person. And what about the Barbary pirates.... Google them. The people who are trying to force an apology are not really interested in injustice they just want to push through their own version of their politically correct agenda. Thats why an apology makes sense to these people because it satisfies their own need to be heard and feel important!!
Jupiter
Droschke,two excellent books you might be interested in,"The Fatal Shore" and"Commonwealth of Thieves."
Awra best
Joop.
Tomahawk kid
I think were still involved with slavery in one way or another, sweat shops in Bangladesh for example, I think Glasgows links to slavery is a very dark time in our history rite up there with the clearances, the Irish and Scottish famines, rich abusing the poor, I'm glad we had the Scottish abolitionists doing their thing at the time they did alot to make people aware of the dire situation, I wonder how many African men died on the boats heading for their destinations.
*Yellow Rose*
We today in modern Glasgow and truly Glaswegians should not feel the need to apologise for our history. We have grown up and realise that hurting any human being is not on.. but the reality is that the world's people will continue to hurt, kill, and demoralise other people. An apology would be worthless as cruelty to other humans continues over the world. So the world should apologise and stop fighting, yes I know that will never happen, but you can "Imagine",....
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