End to Slavery?

Pope Francis joins other faith leaders at ceremony in observance of U.N. Day for the Abolition of Slavery.

History was made in the Vatican on Dec. 2, when Pope Francis and other leaders of the world’s main religions—Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Judaism—signed a joint declaration to work together to eradicate modern slavery in its various forms by the year 2020. Pope Francis was the first to sign the pledge “to do all in our power, within our faith communities and beyond, to work together for the freedom of all those who are enslaved and trafficked so that the future may be restored.” They declared that “modern slavery, in terms of human trafficking, forced labor and prostitution, organ trafficking, and any relationship that fails to respect the fundamental conviction that all people are equal and have the same freedom and dignity, is a crime against humanity.” Some sources put the number of people trapped in slavery at 36 million, including children.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
Ernest Martinson
3 years 10 months ago
The War of Secession put a violent end to slavery. Chattel slavery was abolished in 1865 with the Thirteenth Amendment. Sadly, partial slavery came back in 1913 with the income tax in the Sixteenth Amendment. Partial slavery was just in time to help fund the 1917 entry of the Land of the Free into World War I. Partial slavery continues to help fund today’s endless wars, but partial slavery may give way to full slavery when the bill comes due.


The latest from america

The tête-à-tête between Paul Krugman and Nancy Pelosi in Manhattan was like a documentary about a once-popular rock band. (Rod Morata/Michael Priest Photography)
Speaking in a deep blue stronghold, the Democratic leader of the House calls for “civility” and cautiously hopes that she will again wield the speaker’s gavel in January.
Brandon SanchezOctober 16, 2018
The lecture provoked no hostile reaction from the students who heard it. But a media firestorm erupted.
John J. ConleyOctober 16, 2018
Though the current synod appears to lack the sort of drama and high-stakes debates of the previous two, the role of conscience appears to be a common thread.
Michael J. O’LoughlinOctober 16, 2018
When Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their fists on the Olympic podium, their act drew widespread criticism. Now Colin Kaepernick is the face of Nike.
Michael McKinleyOctober 16, 2018