Oregon Magazine

How do you Abort Three-fifths of a Human?
 by Larry Leonard

January 24, 2011 - On the FOX program, Hannity, the "Reverend" Al Sharpton  said that the famous constitutional clause that defined 
(negro/black/African-American) people as 3/5 of a human being could not be used in an argument about abortion. It was difficult to understand his point, since being a liberal Democrat, he suffers from handicapped logic and a massive superiority complex. Anyway, the session was all about something (I think if was) Rick Santorum said, recently.  Santorum said that pro-abortion liberals like Sharpton should easily grasp his defense of the unborn because their ancestors had also lacked Constitutional protections.  At one time, they were considered to be only partly human.

Sharpton, like any liberal would, said that there was no comparison.  The unborn are not considered 3/5 of a human like the slaves were.  For some reason I cannot grasp, to Sharpton being 3/5 of a human is worse than not being considered human, at all. 

The odd aspect to all this is oblique to the discussion.  Sharpton's manner made it clear that he thinks the Constitutional designation of slaves as partial humans was an American evil.  He is apparently ignorant of the fact that it was an American civil rights victory.

We'll begin at the beginning. 

Are unborn
(negro/black/African-American) things/clusters of foetal cells/embryos, etc.) human?  For that matter, are the unborn of any race, creed or color, except liberals, human?  (Liberals cannot be considered human because abortion does not affect them.  They don't have any brains to suck out.)

Science to the Rescue

Science sees it as follows:  No biologist on the planet would agree that a caterpillar is a butterfly.  A butterfly usually has wings.  Caterpillars usually don't.  But in the same vein, none of these biologists would tell you that if we kill all the caterpillars we would nevertheless still see a butterfly, again.  Iron ore isn't steel.  It  makes a terrible girder.  But without iron ore, there would be no steel girders.  The two things are connected -- and in a specific order.  You don't need steel girders to have iron ore, but you must have iron ore to get a steel girder.  Nature is replete with such one-way situations.

Human life is a series of stages.  One of them takes place in the womb.  The only way to justify killing the unborn is to reclassify them as non-human, and so refuse them Constitutional protection.  The Supreme Court judges who voted for "choice" in Roe v. Wade should have their portraits hung above the oven doors of Buchenvald. 

Mr. Sharpton, who supports the slaughter of innocent humans during their first stage of life, thinks designating his ancestors as partially human, and so denying them Constitutional protection, was wrong? 

Let's take a look at the purpose of that clause.

The 3/5 clause

Now, once upon a time, the Democrats objected to
(negro/black/African-American) slaves being designated as human beings -- except when it came to political power.  This was back in the early days.  America was just beginning to assemble itself.  The problem had to do with how many representatives your side gets. 

If the legislative argument is between those who support slavery and those who don't, the outcome will be determined by the side with the most votes. (Taxation was involved here, as well, but we'll keep the focus of this piece on the early conflict between folks who differed about slavery.)

Just like today, the number of votes you could cast in assemblies determined how things would be done.  If you counted each slave as a citizen, and because he was busy planting tobacco and couldn't make it to the polling place to vote, so he sent the massa to bring in the plantation's total tally, what would that mean in terms of political power?  Well, since New York City in those days didn't have enough population to fill Yankee Stadium, guess what part of the young nation would win all the political arguments? 

The Democrats wanted to count their
(negro/black/African-American) slaves when it came to how many votes they got in the House of Representatives, but not count them when the subject was "rights."

What are rights?  Guarantees against unequal treatment, usually.  If the law allows you to go fishing, but prohibits me from doing the same thing, this situation is called discrimination. Owning property, going fishing when you wanted to, not picking cotton just because the massa said to do it  -- you know what I'm talking about here. 
Modern Democrats will tell you it was "only rights for whites," but like most of what modern Democrats say, that is nonsense.  In the early days, slavery wasn't what you think it was.

The first slave owner (massa) in the Massachusetts Colony was a

Contrary to what 99.99999% of the "educators" in America would tell you, color wasn't the defining parameter.  Availability and price were the deciding factors.  All around the planet at that time, you found free blacks and slave blacks.  Free whites and slave whites. The color of the slaves was of little import.  Greece and Rome, both "white" civilizations, had white slaves.  Black African kings had black slaves.  White Vikings had Irish slaves.  American indians had American indian slaves. Rent the wonderful Russel Crowe film, Gladiator, and it will become clear to you.

Go back in time even farther and you're in for a real shock.  Slavery was invented by the
(negro/black/African-American).  Contact your nearest university.  Find a professor of anthropology, although a history professor should suffice.  Ask him or her what color "Lucy" was.  Come to think of it, a biologist would do, here.  The proof is in the DNA pudding.

The inventors of slavery were "out of Africa."  There wasn't a single white human on the planet, at the time.  I am white and half Irish.  Technically, Norwegians and American blacks owe me reparations.

A founding northern Christian anti-slavery political trick

Well, the mostly-Christian white folks whose ancestors would go on to end American slavery (Republicans), snookered the opposition with this three-fifths thing.  They said, "If you insist on slaves being property, then when it comes to the number of votes we get in the House of Representatives -- the numbers of representatives we get -- we demand that our furniture be counted. And, our cattle, too.  If you get to add your property to the count, we get to add our property to the count.

And so, the impossible happened.  A political compromise resulted in something good.  Slaves became 3/5 of a human being for the purpose of the count.  This reduced the political power of plantation owners. The slaves didn't equal a full political unit.  Their actual raw numbers could not be fully assembled to safeguard the ancient practice of human bondage that they, themselves had originated.  Thus, the plantation owners didn't have enough votes to call all the Congressional shots.  In those days, that affected the balance of political power all the way to the presidency.

I would say that Al Sharpton needs lessons in biology and history, but with the meteoric rise of the Tea Parties, he is quickly becoming an American political dinosaur, and you know what happened to them.


Additional info at:

The Three/Fifths Compromise: Inaccurate Interpretation

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