Were your family ‘slave owners’?

On Wednesday the BBC gave publicity to a divisive and dangerous project that seems to have a very specific agenda….hunting down the descendants of long dead slave owners with the intent of publicly shaming and villifying them and shaking them down for cash.

“The most surprising thing is how embedded the whole slavery business is in British society.”

‘Today’ also ran an interview…..This project is not just a chat about History….this has a hidden agenda….just follow the money.

“What we have done is to establish the life-trajectories of some 3,000 absentee slave-owners in Britain, and analysis of this has allowed us to trace the legacies of slave-ownership in Victorian Britain.”

For the descendants of slave owners that means: ‘We know where you live and we’re coming for you!’

and especially him:

‘Other famous names who were distantly related to people involved in the slave trade include the Prime Minister, David Cameron.’

The BBC couldn’t resist mentioning his name.


Whilst there might have been a case for the actual slaves to have been recompensed in some manner that cannot possibly be applied to a world that has moved on 200  years.

Slavery was legal and accepted, if morally questionable, in previous eras…just as many other acts were…..it seems purely a highly politicised and singular attempt to raise this subject that would, if successful, have every man and his dog combing history for an ‘injustice’ and a lawyer to claim on it.

Will the Egyptians be paying off the Israelites for enslaving them?  Will the Spanish be handing back the value of the gold they plundered from the Americas?  Will the Greeks cough up for the destruction of Persepolis by Alexander? Can the Scots claim for the Highland clearances?


This is a money making piece of ‘moral’ blackmail in essence that the BBC is giving airtime to.


Ironically on the same day the BBC publishes this article on Witch hunts:

“Witchcraft is very closely related to  envy,” says Professor Lyndal Roper, of the University of Oxford

It seems the same conditions apply when hunting down descendants of slave owners….the politics of envy….if these people are ‘rich’ it must have been through the use of slaves by their forebears….therefore they ‘owe’  what might be called ‘blood money’.

In other words an invented grievance and connection to the past to justify a spot of blackmail.



The witch hunt article is of course intended to be seen as a parable for our own times and the religious conflicts we see now inside our borders….instead of irrational witch hunts we have ‘Islamophobia’ demonising Muslims, in the BBC’s opinion….however it seems appropriate to suggest that demonisation of entirely innocent people whose only ‘fault’ is to be a descendant of a slave owner is in the making and the BBC is a willing partner.

In the 1640s, East Anglia was mired in the kind of religious conflict in which witch-hunts can thrive – when opposing beliefs could readily be equated with heresy or evil.

There were pockets of Catholic practice as well as areas of intense Puritanism, creating a climate of paranoia and fear….The conditions required for a witch-hunt may be extreme but in the religious and social conflict of East Anglia during the English Civil War, Hopkins and Stearne found exactly that – a perfect storm which bore them through the region on a wave of paranoia, grievance and zeal.



The only people who should feel shame are the people who run this project and those in the BBC who endorse it.


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51 Responses to WITCH HUNT

  1. Ian Hills says:

    As soon as the Arabs compensate us for the white slave trade, we can pay off the blacks. As we would have to deduct the cost of buying the blacks from the Arabs, we end up in profit.


    • Joe Chapman says:

      An interesting point to note: the Arab world has cunningly avoided having to pay about a millennia and a half’s worth of compensation by turning most of their African slaves into Eunuchs. Its almost as if they were covering their tracks.


  2. Amounderness Lad says:

    Do I know if any of my ancestors were involved in the slave trade two centuries and more ago? No. Do I care? No. I dopn’t have a clue either if they horse thieves of highway men.

    In the highly unlikely event any of my ancestors did happen to be involved in the slave trade, should anybody come rattling the tin in the hope of playing on the guilt I don’t feel I hope they will be able to prove that any such ancestor was personally involved in dealing with any of their specific ancestors.

    I have no more concern about the historic slave trade than I have in worrying if any of my ancestors were either butchers or butchered in the various historic European battles of two centuries ago and more. It’s time some people grew up and put the Victim Card away. It has been over played so many times it no longer has any worth, not even a single pennies worth.


  3. Guest Who says:

    ‘Whilst there might have been a case for the actual slaves to have been recompensed in some manner that cannot possibly be applied to a world that has moved on 200 years.’

    Ah but… In Beebworld, that was a different time. However one which, uniquely, will count over anything more recent.
    It’s like the Dr. has reprogrammed the Daleks to ‘Redact! Redact! Redact!’
    Time to dust off my school essay written at a previous period of historical grievance compo trawling: ‘My great, great, great, great… Grandad was a Roman comfort boy!


  4. thoughtful says:

    One of the funniest programs I ever saw was a black activist who had his ancestry traced, unfortunately I can’t remember his name. All the way through he droned on & on about slavery & how it had affected him etc etc. Then the bombshell was dropped and his face was an absolute picture. It turned out that his ancestors had been overseers, the ones who brutalised the slaves with the beatings and whippings. The worst imaginable outcome even worse than slave ownership – but then of course it wasn’t his ancestors fault, they were made / or expected to do it. There’s always an excuse!


    • Kyoto says:

      I don’t think this is the same programme but there was a Timewatch programme produced in the 1990s about slavery on the West Coast of Africa.

      A large part did deal with the African participation. For example the slave forts only had the major defences facing the sea, because while they feared predatory European competitors the inland defences were not substantial as the local African’s were joint participants.

      One of the last scenes was an African tour guide showing a slave house and saying how it was run by Africans (Europeans had nothing to do with it). Asked how diaspora-African’s react when they see and hear this she said they ‘start crying and hitting the walls when it dawns on them that their whole conception of the slave trade is false’.

      Maybe the BBC in an effort to be balanced should look into descendants of African families, living in Britain, who made money out of the slave trade.

      I doubt this Timewatch programme will ever see the light of day again.


      • Wild says:

        I recall watching a BBC programme in which a female black “activist” from London [who was making as career out of blaming white people for taking her people from her beloved Africa] was taken to the places in Africa where genetics indicated her black ancestors originated.

        She absolutely detested Africa (dirty) and the Africans (all they wanted was money) and could not wait to leave.

        So how did the programme end?

        It showed her crying alone in a ruined slave prison because her ancestors had been taken away from Africa.


  5. colditz says:

    Poor Alan clearly worried that his family’s fortune based on s;lavery and that somewhere out there is adescendant living in Barbados who is (whisper it) ….black.


    • Demon says:

      You are such a racist Coalpits. If you have nothing to declare except your stupidity then you should consider leaving your keyboard alone.


      • Mat says:

        Yep I’m with Demon on this Clagfritz you really should stop for a bit and sort your collection of fascist memorabilia !


      • NotaSheep says:

        Just don’t feed the troll and it will get bored and go away.


        • Frank Words says:

          Or just ban him. No point allowing someone on this site simply to abuse others.


    • Scrappydoo says:

      colditz , how do you know some of your ancestors were not involved in the slave trade? (Just shows how dim and smug some lefies are)


  6. DJ says:

    Yes, indeed, in Beebotopia we absolutely need to know about white people whose ancestors might have owned slaves two centuries ago, but we don’t need to who the ‘man’ are who are raping children right now.

    Reporting that would be pointlessly inflammatory, doncha know?


  7. Paddytoplad says:

    Cant see them chasing family of concentration camp guards can you? Or the families of convicted IRA men.
    Cant see them chasing the families of Peter Sutcliffe or Rose West can you?

    Why then hunt the families of slave owners?

    What about the families butchered in the Mau Mau rebellion. Are they going to chase up Barry O?


    • Guest Who says:

      “It’s Friday, it’s 5pm, it’s the BBC, and… it’s SelectiveHistoryNacht! (Incendiary rhetoric will be provided, thanks to a kind donation from the SWP, by event marshals Mason & Penny)”


  8. Beeboidal says:

    The BBC is buggering up history again, I think.

    According to ship records it is estimated about 12.5 million people were transported as slaves from Africa to the Americas and the Caribbean from the 16th century until the trade was banned in 1807.

    The article as a whole and the 1807 ban date makes it appear that Britain was responsible for the shipment of 12.5 milliion slaves. This is not the case; 12.5 million is the figure commonly given for the entire transatlantic slave trade. Britain share of this is estimated at 3.3 million.


    • Smell the glove says:

      Looking at the state of Africa, it is the descendants who should be paying us!


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      As if the entire concept of slavery and the trade all magically appeared out of thin air on September 1, 1562 or something.


      • Ian Hills says:

        Some years ago I read that “Zimbabwe” was the Shona name for the stone ruins of a medieval Arab slave trading fort, where the locals brought in other blacks for sale. But now the ruins are portrayed as evidence of an ancient black civilisation – and the earlier writings about their origins appear to have been dropped down a memory hole.


  9. wallygreeninker says:

    It’s interesting the way the left sways with he wind of fashion. In the 60’s and 70’s the narrative was a sub-Marxist one – that the slave trade financed the industrial revolution (and slaves also provided the raw cotton to sustain its early stages) : Britain became rich by trampling on black people. The witch craze was explained by guilt and anxiety during a transition phase between the church, gentry and neighbours informally helping support old widows and the state stepping in with its impersonal poor laws. The poor were being scapegoated. Now, it seems, Marx being old hat, they’ve moved on to identity politics to use the past to provide a rationale for resentment.


  10. Doublethinker says:

    The BBC have long seen slavery in the 18th century as a stick to beat Britain with. It doesn’t matter to them that all most all countries participated in the slave trade and the use of slaves. The BBC usually decides to judge Britain’s history by the standards of today rather than those of the time, and so finds much to be appalled about. It is all part of their long term plan to ensure no one has any pride in the country.
    Curiously though the BBC applies the ‘standards of the time test’ to the recent behaviour of Liberal Democrats and of course disc jockeys and fixers, when trying to defect blame.
    They really are loathsome.


  11. Mark says:

    I know that it is terribly politically incorrect but there would have been no Jessie Owens, Muhammad Ali, Michael Jackson or Beyonce were it not for slavery.
    The point is that stuff happens, people deal with it and sometimes the outcome is good and sometimes bad.
    Constantly dragging over the past and pointing fingers does not move things forward – it is a symptom of middle class guilt that has been foisted in the English for years.


  12. Hachi says:

    The BBC is clearly biased against slavery.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Move along, Moby.


      • MaxMiller says:

        This site is right-wing and should support slavery.
        It increases productivity and drives down costs.


        • David Preiser (USA) says:

          So does streamlining a bloated management structure. If you can’t debate the issues, just play the fool, eh?


          • MaxMiller says:

            Eugenics must be used on the over staffed BBC.


            • David Preiser (USA) says:

              I don’t think that word means what you think it means.


              • Guest Who says:

                There’s a lot of it about.
                Beyond a dictionary of redactions (quite like that notion for the library of the absurd that is their various rules and guidelines), the BBC seems to have issued a thesaurus based on ‘sounds close enough’ words, to the Q-commenters.


            • wallygreeninker says:

              The original comedian Max Miller was funny ha ha. You’re just funny ugh.


        • jro says:



    • A McCann says:

      hate those filthy micks as well as the niggers..


      • wallygreeninker says:

        Your comments are like those unpleasant little surprises a puppy leaves lying on the floor before it’s been housetrained.


  13. Henry Wood says:

    I wonder…
    I wonder if the “researchers” of such projects have investigated the family histories of their own great (and not so great) Panjandrums?

    I wonder if this might lead to truly independent investigators turning up family histories which do not reflect well on some ancestors of today’s “elite”, and not only Tories either? That would be funny, eh?

    Jeremy Hardy might even mention it in his new series, “Jeremy Hardy Speaks To The Nation – a trailer for which appeared on R4 last night just before PM started. It was full of Hardy’s “humour” which had me retching as usal as he told us just how funny he was going to be.
    Humour such as in a September 2004 edition of the show, Hardy suggested that members and supporters of the BNP should be “shot in the back of the head”. That’s funny, eh?
    I wonder what Jeremy Hardy’s ancestors got up to?


    • Buggy says:

      “I wonder what Jeremy Hardy’s ancestors got up to? “

      Marrying their own sisters I should think: seems the most likely explanation for the current product of “A thousand generations of Hardys”.


  14. Ian Hills says:

    They’re employed as Uncle Toms by the executives, who might feel guilty about their slave-owning ancestry, but who seldom admit them to the beeb’s ruling class.

    Inherited colonialist attitudes die hard – perhaps they use the expression “boy” among themselves in the all-white settlement of Hampstead.


  15. wallygreeninker says:

    Justice for Lee Jaspers! Surprised the Beeb haven’t had him on.


    Cranmer has a good article on the role of Christianity and Britain in the abolition of slavery.


  16. George R says:

    Have any Muslims confessed about Islamic/Arab slavery?


  17. Chris Martin says:

    The BBC really is the ‘enemy within’, constantly trying to make us feel guilty. The reality is that slavery was a part of ALL societies until recently, and remains common even now (although hidden) in some areas of the world, such as the Middle East and India, so I fail to understand why the BBC wants to make us feel we have a special guilt for this. On the contrary European countries took the lead in stopping slavery. If you visit Egypt or Morocco (just to take two examples) it was the colonial powers who put an end to the centuries-old African slave trade, where ‘black’ Africans were brought across the Sahara as slaves to the Arab/Berber countries. The French ended this practice in 1912 in Morocco and the British in Egypt. The BBC fails to mention any of this.


  18. wallygreeninker says:

    A McCann is a troll


  19. David Vance says:

    One of the wearisome features of a blog is when trolls adopt a name of a person who has sensible views and then post garbage aimed at damaging a/The site and b/The person they impersonate. So it is with the “AMcCann” persona. It is a troll, impersonating, a a tosser with nothing better to do with their empty life.


  20. A McCann says:

    you’re a bollix vance…