History.com: “The founding fathers were fighting for freedom. Just not for everyone.” In an early version of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson “condemned slavery as one of the many evils foisted upon the colonies by the British crown. The passage was cut from the final wording.” He called slavery a “cruel war against human nature itself.”
In his initial draft, “Jefferson blamed Britain’s King George for his role in creating and perpetuating the transatlantic slave trade—which he describes, in so many words, as a crime against humanity….Between July 1 and July 3, congressional delegates debated the document, during which time they excised Jefferson’s anti-slavery clause.” The reason: the colonies were deeply divided on the issue of slavery. The Declaration was a consensus document seeking to express the unified beliefs of the rebelling colonists. Jefferson later wrote that delegates to the Continental Congress from South Carolina and Georgia vehemently objected to the anti-slavery language. So did some of our “Northern brethren.” Many in the continental congress had a vested interest in slavery.