Stuart Mill argues that the death warrant of the slave trade is confining it to the existing limits. He implies that for the slave trade to stop it should be within the current states only. Consequently, the limitation would deny the slave traders a chance to go and purchase more slaves in other countries. It was custom for slaves to work in agriculturally productive areas, which included the agricultural fields where they provided cheap labor. They received poor wages and were treated in an unjust manner. Food was denied to them, unlike to other white workers, and they underwent serious periods of discrimination. In some instances, the slaves went through torturous handling like severe flogging in public. They could not access medical services whenever they fell ill.


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Slavery faced a considerable opposition from various personalities during the time. They included human rights activists, who argued that the inhumane treatment was a contravention of people’s rights live, work, and associate. At some point, some of the slaves died. When death instances came under the spotlight, a need to end the slave trade emerged. Economists like Stuart Mill argued that the vice led to less production since people did not work willingly. The slaves worked unwillingly, and as such, they were not able to work as effectively as people with freedom. At the same time, religious people argued that the vice was against God’s commands. There was enormous opposition against the slave trade from different sides.

The slaves also worked in the industries. However, the conditions of work in the industries were no better. They carried heavy loads in the factories; they were denied any personal time to relax. Mill was one of the people who wrote against the slave trade and slave drivers. Through his book, he argued that by confining the slave trade to its existing limits, a death warrant to the slave trade industry would come to force. The confinement of the slave trade in the United States would also make the process of crusading against slavery easier. It is because the Southern States were leading beneficiaries of the slave trade, and hence did not want to see the ruthless trade end. It would be easier to lobby against the slave trade by those states that did not support the development. First, laborers ought to be treated with respect to achieve reasonable progress in the agricultural sector. It is because slaves would not be readily available, considering the fact that the slave traders would be denied access to the market places. Respect would have to step in the way employers address workers. Hailing insults at a worker would be outdated, considering the fact that the slave labor would be rarely available. In essence, this would be an end to the long period of slaves’ impunity and pain. It would mark tremendous steps towards ending the slave trade.

Another aspect is that there would be better pay for the laborers. As the law of demand states, when demand for a commodity or service is high, sellers may be inclined to review the prices upwards. Scarcity of labor would be created by the confinement of the slave trade to certain areas only. This meant that they employers would be forced to pay the available workers well so that production increases. Decent pay would mark a significant step towards ending the slave trade. There would also be an introduction of equality measures at the work place. This is because people dabbling in slave labor would be rare and not easily available for employers to access. Thus, the existing pool of workers would be treated fairly. It was a rule that no worker would be preferred in attempts to increase productivity. This in essence would mark an end to the long period of anarchy in the labor sector.

Moreover, the introduction of barriers and the consequential confinement of the slave trade would further result into the development of technology. This is because the existing pool of laborers would not be enough to maintain current production. In turn, technology would make work easier for the laborers. They would work for less hours and dissipate less energy while working. This would eliminate one main characteristic of the slave trade – overworking. The confinement of the slave trade to existing limits would also be a blessing in disguise to the existing workers. This is because they would enjoy greater freedom. They would not be coerced to engage in any activities that do not please them since the employers would be unwilling to let them go. This means that their employers would consult them on certain issues. Previously, this was an exceptionally rare occurrence. It would facilitate the end of the slave trade.


Mill was an economist who understood the underlying factors of increased productivity. He believed that people are more productive when they work with passion. They work grudgingly, on the contrary, when employers force them to work. They also fail to deliver as they would if the conditions of work were more favorable. This is how the economist came up with the idea of confinement of the slave trade within existing limits to give the trade a death warrant. The slave trade had been rampant for a long time, and efforts from various stakeholders to end the practice bore no fruits.

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