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The Trickster Deity
Crackpot Mailbox: A Post-Modern Myth versus the Early Modern Truth
© 2018 James LaFond
“This is that monologue from American Gods I was telling you about.”
My pulp culture friend scans the mass of media he ploughs through for anything pertaining to subjects I write on. Below is one which I quite enjoyed for the reason that a tiny sliver of truth slips out beneath the weighted lies of the dialogue. Below is the dialogue followed by significant events in the year that ship unloaded its miserable cargo in Jamestown harbor, copied from a page and a half of my book America in Chains.
1619: Jamestown, Virginia. John Rolfe informs the Virginia Company that Jamestown officials have begun buying and selling men and boys, often to cover land rent and that servants have had their contracts broken by the masters.
1619: Jamestown, Virginia. John Porey describes a successful tobacco farmer with six servants. This will be the minimum for a tobacco farmer who will have 6–200 servants.
1619: Virginia. There are 44 private tobacco plantations.
1619: Virginia, planter John Porey said that slaves were “our principal wealth.” Note that black slaves had yet to arrive in Virginia.
1619: London, the Privy Council authorized the Virginia Company to capture, imprison, punish and sell children.
1619: Virginia, first shipment of 100 white child slaves received in Jamestown from London.
1619: Virginia. The Dutch sell 20 blacks in Jamestown.
1619: Virginia. 50 acre “freedom dues” established, most of which were taken as a “headright” by the sponsor who paid for the servant’s passage, resulting in 95% of “freedom dues” acreage going to these speculators in servants as most servants died within their seven year term from overwork and beatings with many of the remainder failing to win their freedom.
1619: Virginia. Statute states “if a servant willfully neglects his master’s commands he shall suffer bodily punishment.”
1619: Jamestown Virginia. The first meeting of the House of Burgesses.
I would now discuss the salient point of the monologue, written by a standout writer who knows well what he writes of and slides in some deep facts beneath the shallow patina of lies and then returns to the main lie with force to cover his tracks.
The truth spoken most strongly here was that black and white were inauthentic constructs used by the ruling elite, sunken in the myth that all European-Americans were members of the ruling elite. The facts on the ground were that perhaps 1,000 people lived in Virginia under English rule, that exactly 50 of them were members of the ruling elite and 20 African-Americans would now number among the thousand or so slaves, purchased at high rates as house servants for the superrich as part of a divisive strategy to divide the servile class along racial lines. Most of these African-American slaves would actually supervise European-America slaves for their European-American masters.
When the trickster god, which is whom he seems to be, though I have not viewed this series, says that “these Dutchmen call themselves white and call you black,” showing with his hand that he is manifestly not black, he speaks only of the minority of Dutchmen who were non-Christian. At this time white was a very rare racial term in English which was usually applied by Berber, Arab and other non-Christian slave masters to designate their Christian European property. The Africans were generally referred to as negroes, which was a term meaning black, but also as maroons [runaways] and Africans.
There was only one monolithic European identity at the time and it was “Christian,” the term that all Europeans and people of European descent used to describe themselves when wishing to make common cause with men of rival races, such as Dutch and English. If two Englishmen were trading slaves, then they identified as English. If a Dutchman and an Englishman were trading slaves than they identified as Christians, unless the Dutchman was not a Christian, in which case he would declare himself white in a bid for solidarity, as in Morocco and Algeria and other Muslim domains they would both be equally oppressed under Islamic laws, and the big dogs on the slave scene in 1619 were the Barbary Pirates who raided English home waters and Sub-Sahara Africa with impunity. Until Cromwell’s protectorate a generation later Englishmen were forbidden to be anything other than Christian.
The great lies pushed relentlessly in this scene are that the condition of African-Americans never changed, when in fact African-Americans were buying and selling European-Americans in the 1640s in Virginia and that some African-Americans enjoyed free status in Virginia for the entire 300 years under discussion. The other great lie pushed here is that police only kill blacks [and there was no such thing as police in 1619] but the truth as that in every year of the 1900s and 2000s more European-Americans have been killed and jailed by police than African-Americans. The irony is that the anger called for by African-Americans by the trickster has resulted in them being jailed and shot at a higher per-capita rate as their mothers generally teach them to fight the police—this might be the point behind the scene, a metaphysical explanation of African-American criminality against their own self-interest.
The third great lie is that slavery was a racial construct, which it manifestly was not, with every person under English rule subject to sale as a slave if he fell into debt. Only royalty was exempt from debt slavery. The common knowledge that African slaves were used by Islamic potentates as slave-drivers and torturers and executioners of European slaves, soon drove the inaction of laws preventing African-Americans and “Mohamedans” from owning Christians. However, non-Christian “whites” were still permitted, under Muslim and English law to own European-Christians.
The little white lie in this monologue was that slaves were free on Sunday, when they were not free on Sunday until the 1800s. Many complaints were made in the 1600s that slaves were worked on Sundays in Virginia.
Returning to the main point of this TV scene, that black and white are false racial constructs, I would point out that I have found evidence for white as a false construct in the European consciousness going back only to 1550, whereas non-European Caucasian literary sources were falsely labelling Sub-Saharan African races as “black” exactly 2,000 years earlier, along with statements that their damned origins as sons of Ham, who embarrassed Noah his father, justified their enslavement. So this race-baiting tirade [employing the English word “Fuck” a lot] does carry with it a whisper of an ancient defamatory crime from entirely outside the European sphere—for let’s not forget, that the term “slave” comes from “Slav” for the type of European slave most valued as a flesh fuck-bot by non-European Caucasians of various faiths and races from about A.D. 500. Do note that this tradition extended to the high sexual value of Eastern European slaves [Thracians, including Spartacus] by Southern-Europeans and non-African Hellenic-Egyptians from about 320 B.C.
With all my criticism of the scene, keep in mind that no actor could have recited this case as written above in 2 minutes nor would the dim minds of our slave society be able to understand is words. The author, Neil Gaimon, I think, did a service by exposing the lie of false meta-zoological racial constructs, imbedded in the very postmodern BLM speech he delivered.
Note, that I have found records of mixed-race freemen from the 1600s, indicating that significant intermarriage was occurring in 17th Century Virginia.
Below is the most common answer to the google search for slaves 1619 Jamestown:
“The first 20 or so Africans to reach the English colonies arrived in Jamestown, Virginia in 1619, brought by Dutch traders who had seized them from a captured Spanish slave ship. The Spanish usually baptized slaves in Africa before embarking them.”
There is, of course, no mention and no interest in the 100 English children legally abducted for the crimes of poverty, homelessness and orphanage and sold that very same year in Jamestown, of which only 5 would survive until 1625, none of them free or freedom bound.
The next section of this introduction to American Spartacus will examine the word Bound and what it actually meant in Plantation America.
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