Abolition is defined as the legal prohibition and ending of slavery of blacks in the United States. And with the passage of the northwest ordinance when Michigan became a state in 1837, a prohibition against slavery was put into the states constitution. Compared to abolitionists in the east, Michigan seemed to take on a much more active approach. The activism in Michigan brought on two developments. One being putting slavery at the forefront of politics. And the other being the creation of the Underground Railroad.
The Underground Railroad was set up to assist escaped slaves on their path from slavery to freedom in Canada. The fugitive slave act of 1850 ensured that even if slaves were to escape and arrive in free states in the north, they could be captured and sent back to their plantations. The railroad was a secret network put in place to aid the slaves in obtaining their freedom. Fugitives generally made their way on foot and during the night, with stops approximately 10 to 15 miles apart. Detroit was listed as one of the most exciting stops on the Underground Railroad because generally it was the final stop before freedom.
It’s sad how so much went into this movement and yet we still seem at a stand still today. On a daily basis around you it still feels as if African Americans do not get the same treatment. Why is it that even after abolishing slavery segregation still seems at a stand still? They say african Americans are equal in the eyes of the law, but yet racial discrimination still stands strong today. When is this all going to end? Or are we prolonging it on ourselves?
Abolition terminated slavery in America, but yet still to this day you feel it around you. In passing, do you see two African Americans smile the same as they pass, as you would see an African American and a white American do? I don’t feel like you do. Every passing day we all have a chance to make a change, let it be today, with all of us.