William Apess An Indian's Looking-Glass For The White Man

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On the other side, one of the first voices in America who used religion as an argument against slavery, William Apess, an ordained Methodist minister, wrote his 1833 article “An Indian's Looking-Glass for the White Man” as a plea for racial equality in America. In the piece, Apess uses logic, reasoning, and a hearty dose of emotional appeal in combination with his knowledge of the Bible. He argues that while Jesus did not condemn slavery explicitly, Apess asks “Did you ever hear or read of Christ teaching his disciples that they ought to despise one because his skin was different from theirs?” and also asks of Jesus, that “Did not he who completed the plan of salvation complete it for the whites as well as for the Jews, and others?”(Apess, 2) Apess also argues that the children of God should love each other, and that all men are the children of God when he says “But you may ask who are the children of God? perhaps you may say none but white. If so, the word of the Lord is not true.” Apess closes his argument by remarking on the fact that “If the Lord Jesus Christ, who is counted by all to be a Jew,…show more content…
and by those too, who profess religion?”(Apess, 6). In this way, Apess argues by pointing out the hypocrisy found in the Christian ideology of the time, insisting that the ideas held on racial superiority and slavery, while not explicitly condemned in the Bible, go against the ideas of the teachings of Jesus. Apess also uses an appeal to authority, to Jesus nonetheless, in order to shame those who would argue for slavery by mentioning that their savior would be discriminated against in American society. Another voice against slavery, Frederick Douglass, not only uses his religion as an argument against slavery, but also condemns the branches of Christianity which supported it over the course of his 1845 “Narrative”. In his appendix, Douglass states “I love the pure, peaceable, and impartial Christianity of Christ: I therefore hate the corrupt,
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