The slave trade of the 14th through 19th centuries had many impacts on the U.S. and Latin America. In my opinion, though there may have been less slaves shipped there, the overall impact on the U.S. was greater than on Latin America. In many ways these impacts are still being felt today.
Some people would say that the greatest impact of the slave trade was the United Stated Civil War. I suppose that this would be an obvious and correct statement, but I believe that the consequences extend far beyond that. In my opinion, the most important consequence of the slave trade is seen in today’s American society. Our culture is very concerned with “political correctness”, and a lot of it is a result of the poor treatment of minorities by our country in the past.
It is obvious that the slave trade brought on hundreds of years of racism toward the black race. During the civil rights movement of the 1960’s, there was a struggle between the oppressors and the oppressed, ending with the oppressed finally receiving full rights as human beings. Ever since then, there has been an increased level of awareness in the way our culture acts toward minorities, African Americans in particular. I notice people taking extra care in not offending anyone. It is now practically taboo to call someone “black”, whereas forty years ago it would not be unusual to hear that same person being called the “n-word” in normal conversation.
There are many other examples of the hyper-awareness of American society. Affirmative action illustrated what I believe is the height of the “P.C.” craze. Though it was later ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court, affirmative action established a quota of minorities for businesses and schools. Essentially, if two people, one black and one white, had the same qualifications for a job, or the same GPA and SAT score on a college application, the slot would go to the black applicant simply because he’...