the Change I Wish to See

...and whatever else it takes to find my pants


while discussing South Carolina's Black Code: a set of 'laws' purporting to give blacks a list of rights post 'emancipation' as servants. At the point in the picture, I am again struck by the fundamental flaw in the 'benevolence' of South Carolina's offer: blacks in 1865 couldn't read by rule and virtually without exception. Less than three years before its enactment, it was a crime to teach blacks to do so. This law promised to treat blacks fairly by putting the right to contract in their hands. It occurs to me that I spent a year learning contract law without actually learning it. The idea that South Carolina could somehow remedy what Tocqueville suggested was a perfect legal atrocity with its own version of a perfect legal remedy is so logically suspect it would be laughable if it didn't cost people their lives.