At this very point in time, noticed or unnoticed, there are forms of slavery that are going on as these words are being typed. Slavery no longer relies on a slave master and slave, rapid with his whip; leaving scars that no amount of collateral debt funds could pay back. Today modern day slaves mostly look like regular human beings, walking around as cogs in machines, complacent with monotony. However there are much more obvious forms of slavery that are commonly overlooked, Malcolm X argues that the implementation of welfare was the single most damning thing to happen to African Americans in history. Why? Because essentially it transformed the slave master’s whip into a politician handing out food stamps, money, and essentially providing no incentive for anyone who needed welfare to go out and provide for themselves. So from the plantations to the soup kitchens, or street corners; there was a majority of people relying on a fabricated slave master (aka a rich, white politician) to help them live their daily lives.
There are countries that provide implausible labor laws for not only employees but their child labor laws (or lack thereof) are preposterous. From human trafficking to pre-marital agreements, we will take an in-depth focus at things going on today that are habitually overlooked, or have been so engrained and conditioned as “practical” that we don’t think twice when we purchase our shoes online, and the snowball affect that happened so that our new Nike shoes could make it to our doorstep in time for Christmas. This article is hopefully going to change your thoughts about these discernible fabricated forms of modern day slavery, and make you think twice before you walk by that homeless man on your street corner you see every morning.
15. Sweat Shops
Sweatshops are no secret, especially when it comes to the popular brand Nike. Perhaps the most ominous, disturbing, and indicative sign of our “unconscious” society, is that despite these sweatshops being public knowledge, we in our culture choose to turn a blind eye and continue buying our must-have Nike shoes or apparel. This picture is awful but depicts the day of a line of slaves working for hours on end and getting pennies worth of pay. This vessel of outsourced work is a complete dispute, and downright unjust form of slavery that exists today. These women photographed likely have no insurance, nothing to cover them medically so their children most likely don’t either. It is inhumane to treat humans in this fashion, sadly this domination of human lives will always thrive in a world frantic for the newest material “must have”, rather than understand the process of how those shoes landed on their feet; Michael Jordan’s even.
14. Big Pharma
Familiar with Martin Shkreli? No? You’re probably more lucky than you thought. He is the media sensation that has gone viral for all the wrong reasons. He has shotgunned his pharmaceutical medication used to save countless lives who are suffering with the AIDS virus, and because he knows his medicine has cornered the market, he has made it no secret that he has sky-rocketed his price because his ‘patients’ need his medicine and without it they will suffer. Perhaps the most disturbing facet of this health care catastrophe can be best identified when thinking of Martin Shkreli, without painting with a broad brush and simply staring at evidence; aren’t all pharmaceuticals monopolizing the market in terms of treatments available anyway? It would seem that in part of taking a holistic medical hippie approach, there is shockingly minimal availability of approaches in terms of western medicinal spins on medication. In a sense, every big pharma corporation in the world has one interest— profit— and with that comes a plethora of medications and routes that we as citizens just don’t have any alternatives other than paying our insurances (if we’re lucky enough to afford them) or co-pays and holding onto the slim faith that these drugs from pharmacies do what they say they will, and hopefully don’t cause a laundry list of side effects in the process.
Welfare, in Malcolm X’s estimation was the single most damning implementation to happen to African Americans, particularly those in the ghetto. Why? It was simply another form of slavery. Instead of the white slave owner with his whip that we had conceived as the stereotypical slave owner, it was re-fabricated into the white man giving out food stamps (among other things). There would be lines of (primarily) African Americans who (in Malcolm X’s eyes) had no motivation to go out and get a job, and relied on the readily available “help” the white man provided. By and large, welfare is a system that is much needed, but like any other facet of society, it only takes one person to ruin it for the rest.
12. Forced Marriage
Forced marriage, is absolutely a component and means of modern day slavery. Like the medieval ages of senseless philosophy, the idea of pairing a son or daughter into a partnership in which they have absolutely no say in. Pairing them for life, and any candidate that is unfortunate enough to be caught in this mess, most certainly will oblige because of the threat of something more powerful; a father, mother, anything or anyone that can threaten them if they do not cooperate. Absolutely a form of oppression, this involves many and usually benefits only the oppressor in some fashion. Whether it’s for money or power, there is some driving force behind the ludicrous proposition of bonding two young adults to a domestic partnership for life. If they are scared enough to marry based upon fear, imagine what other external parts of their lives they are being forced into.
11. Minimum Wage
As by now I’m sure you are aware of the constant battle to raise minimum wage, and if you think about the notion of ‘minimum’ wage it’s actually pretty grim. Essentially minimum wage is placing a barometer (a rather low one) on a human’s value or worth. Most people living on minimum wage cannot sustain a life worth living, let alone live above the poverty line. Fundamentally minimum wage was established so that the lower class could make a ‘sustainable’ wage, but if you really think about it minimum wage is placing a minimum value on what any human being is worth, what their labor is worth, what their time is worth; it’s absolutely a barometer of the value of a human life.
Healthcare has long been a high-risk debate, especially since Obamacare and the policies President Barack Obama set in place to offer healthcare to every American. It sounds like a great idea— what country operates on a system that would turn down a human in need? Well the reason healthcare has made it onto our list is because like it or not, healthcare is not free. So essentially if you are a hard working, tax paying American citizen who cannot afford healthcare (or it costs you an arm and a leg) you are a prisoner of the healthcare system. They determine costs of medical visiting, co-pays on any prescriptions, and countless other fees for things that are absolutely necessary for us in times of need. We are all slaves to the healthcare industry, like it or not.
9. Prison Recidivism/Mass Incarceration/Solitary Confinement
America has more prisons than it has schools; take a second to think about that startling statistic. We have more people locked behind bars than seats in a classroom for children’s minds to be moulded. Even more shocking is that some of these prisons are privately owned, meaning there is literal profit being made on the amount of incarcerated people that enter their prisons. Like all prisons, there is solitary confinement, locking inmates in a cell with little light, an unimaginable living area, and absolutely no one to speak to. If this isn’t a cut and dry example of slavery I’m not sure how else to put it. Recidivism (the amount of repeat offenders after one offense) makes sure that these prisons are always at max capacity. Prisons were built to keep the masses safe, but now it seems the masses by and large are falling into the same trap that was supposed to keep them safe. What about rehabilitation?
8. Bonded Labor
Bonded labor is the forced labor contingent upon a debt of some sort that is owed from the oppressed to the oppressor. Usually some form of gruelling labor in the hot sun, the modern day slave must continue this malicious obligatory labor until the payment for a debt is deemed satisfactory, only then can the slave be free. It is without a doubt a modern day and quite common form of slavery, but slavery nevertheless. These contracts can be something so trivial as a family member who loses a loved one (who owed the debt themselves), now not only suffering the loss of a loved one, they have to go work in often brutal conditions to set the debt straight.
7. Forced Labor & Inappropriate/Intimate Acts
In this picture you see a poor child, another statistic for far too many of the victims of slavery in just another manifestation. An insidious and malicious form of slavery, that is taking regular hard working citizens and literally ripping them from their entire livelihood; only to make them their personal slave and sell them to the highest bidder. This notorious and malicious form of slavery is as cut and dry as it gets; find any random individual (such as this boor boy in this picture), and make them their newest slave. There is literally no telling where this poor boy pictured came from, where he is headed, and what horrors that are undoubtedly headed for him.
6. Mass Media
Media, controlled by a select few, pick and choose everything that we see in our day-to-day lives. They can literally choose which stories make headlines, and which are blown by the wayside. As recently as this highly controversial presidential election, the entire narrative is controlled and decided by mass media and their bosses. Essentially there is no genuinely unbiased network that will actually tell us the truth, they have special interests or bosses that force-feed us whatever they deem is ‘news’. So the next time you turn on FOX or CNN, just remember that what’s being said to you is just what has circumvented its way to the teleprompter that Sean Hannity or Megyn Kelly has been directed to read.
5. Domestic Servitude
Domestic servitude is perhaps one of the most cunning of beasts to make our list. Domestic servants (or slaves essentially) come in many forms, and chances are you’ve seen countless in your lifetime and had no clue. These slaves can be something as simple as a maid, a nanny, really anything that involves the key ingredients of being confined against their will. For example, if someone enters the country illegally, a malicious individual can exploit and blackmail that person into a modern day slave, threatening to get them deported at any moment if they do don’t do as they are told.
4. Our Rights Are NOT Absolute
By now, I’m sure you’ve heard the constant debate stuffing news segments on a daily basis about the second amendment (the right to bare arms). It’s a sober reminder that our guaranteed rights are still up for debate. Depending on which candidate won this most recent election, there could have been drastic changes to the right guaranteed to all of us by our forefathers in the Declaration of Independence. I think most of us would agree that these doctrines set in stone in 1776 until now have served this country well, but like all the other topics mentioned in this article, there is always a higher power that can dictate whether these guaranteed laws actually remain as such. Yet another example of how our guaranteed rights hang in limbo, and leave us to wonder just what exactly will happen next?
3. Human Trafficking
Perhaps the most dangerous and ‘close to home’ on the list of modern forms of slavery. Sacramento, California happens to be the highest area in the United States with such crimes. Conceivably the creepiest facet of human trafficking is that the victims seemingly disappear into thin air, never to be seen again, sold into sex trade, brothels, or whatever these criminals have in mind. Can you imagine, walking the streets and within seconds everything you knew, your loved ones and friends, then realizing you will never see them again? Truly an insidious and malicious form of slavery, taking regular hard working citizens and literally ripping them from their entire livelihood; only to make them their personal slave and sell them to the highest bidder.
2. Fortune 500 Companies And Big Tobacco
As if they didn’t have enough power as it is, get a load of this, these powerhouse companies have actually been benefiting from slavery. JP Morgan and Chase banks have openly admitted that during the 1850s they took an estimated 13,000 slaves as collateral on a debt that was owed to them! Now as far as popular culture goes, imagine how much more of this despicable behavior has been going on, and dates all the way back to the 1850s! These companies, relatively speaking are the ‘Boardwalk’ and ‘Park Place’ of the Monopoly board game. They have more control than we could possibly fathom, and they couldn’t care less how much we suffer from their illegal and immoral trading, and overall negated view of what’s best for society. They have their fortune, now their main focus is how to keep us ‘content’, while stacking their money like a Japanese crescendo.
1. Politicians And Special Interests
The very ‘leaders’ that get elected into congress always “promise” to do their very best to “make America great again!”, and then once they’ve got your vote the public’s wants and needs no longer matter. Why? Behind closed doors these politicians have made promises to special interest groups to support their campaign, and in return they will help pass a Bill or new law benefiting the interest of the group. This is a cunning and backhanded form of slavery because this is a democracy… isn’t it? The founding fathers of our nation created their doctrines so that this could be a country ultimately decided by the people, and it is; as long as the people making the decisions get their way over the masses. It’s absolutely absurd to think that such a well-designed system can be stained by the innate selfishness of certain political leaders. No wonder we’re 19 trillion dollars in debt, and just elected a president whose only claim to fame was his billion-dollar tower. Buckle up, this systemic slavery has been going on for quite some time, and shows no sign of stopping.