The Nation: White Slavery

Exactly 109 years after Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, the Justice Department announced last week that two black men are under federal indictment in South Carolina on charges of holding at least nine white migrant farm workers in peonage and involuntary servitude. The two blacks, both from Florida, are accused of holding the workers confined against their will last summer during peach picking around Spartanburg, S.C. They allegedly charged the whites exorbitant amounts for such things as wine, soap, razor blades and cigarettes, and forcibly prevented them from leaving until their debts were paid. According to the indictment, the blacks,...

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