Imagined apology for slavery

March 2007 will be the 200th anniversary of the official (UK) abolition of the slave trade. In advance of the anniversary, copied below is an imagined apology for slavery. (This comes from the novel, The Apologist by Jay Rayner, p257):
"and the wounds, though they shall never be bound up, are now recognized. The pain and hurt that has passed from generation, from father to son, from mother to daughter, is our pain too for we, the perpetrators, accept our guilt. The tongue that we now share, that was forced upon the peoples of Africa by our ill deeds, is overburdened by the language of domination but ill-equipped when it comes to the making of amends. Only one word presents itself, a tiny word compared to the magnitude of the task set before it, but we offer it now in all humility for it is all we have.
That word is sorry. We are sorry for the grievous crimes of slavery, sorry for the centuries of deprivation, sorry for the river of blood that we have caused to flow. On behalf of myself, my family, and the peoples of Britain and the USA, I ask now that you accept both the apology late though it be, and the sincerity with which it is given". Having read this quote please click here


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