Blacks’ barriers to independence

“In North Carolina, during slavery and into the era of sharecropping, people in the lowest caste were forbidden to sell or trade goods of any kind or be subject to 39 lashes. This blocked the main route to earning money from their own farm labors and forced them into economic dependence on the dominant caste.”

— From “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” by Isabel Wilkerson (2020)