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Tag Archive: Freedom

Monuments…

Anyone who has lived in Newcastle will know the monument. In many ways it’s the epicentre of life in the city; it is the place all directions are given in relation to, it’s the place where people meet, and it’s the place where people gather. There, at the top of a 135ft column, is a statue of Earl Grey. (Yes, the chap they named the tea after.) Earl Grey was the Prime Minister who authored the great reform act and who led the government that passed the 1833 bill for the abolition of slavery in the British Empire. On Saturday afternoon,...
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The Liberty Bell

Can you imagine receiving a letter saying that any debt you had has been cancelled, written off, you’re free? For some people in America this autumn that’s exactly what happened. The Occupy movement used donations to but up debt on the financial markets for a fraction of it’s value and then sent letters out to say the debt had been cancelled; 2,600 people, owing over fifteen million dollars, were set free from the chains of debt. This all sounds fantastic, and it is amazing, but God? He’s had this idea of setting people free going on since the very beginnings...
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The Tipping Point for Slavery?

Yesterday saw the announcement of the Oscar nominations and leading the field is a biographical epic from Steven Spielberg about President Lincoln’s battle to end slavery. We applaud the efforts of Lincoln to make slavery illegal in the USA, but the scary fact is that slavery is bigger business now than ever before. There are more slaves in the world today than even at the height of the slave trade. We rightly celebrate Wilberforce, Alexander II, Equiano and Lincoln, but if we don’t continue their work then our words are nothing but hollow praise. You may not have heard of Donald Ainslie...
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Abolition

At first glance, striding past the painting on the walls of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, you could mistake it for just another Turner of the era; it bears all of the familiar trademarks of his maritime scenes, the colours, the lights in the sky, the sea. It’s only when you actually stop and look that you make out the shape of a human limb, and another, and another, and realise that the sea is full of bodies struggling as they’re sucked beneath the waves. This isn’t a prosaic landscape, it’s hell on the seas. The Slave Ship...
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