The dialogue presented here is extracted from the actual commentary of the participants/players:
Jefferson was an inhumane hypocrite highly instrumental in the founding of the United States, in its early survival, and in establishing principles that would later help a whole lot of Americans, including minority Americans.
"Jefferson is a perfect example of how a good man can have some serious flaws."
Or, he's an example of,, "...How a flawed man can do some serious good...."
My take? There is Jefferson the Founder, who made a deal with the Devil in order to ensure there would be a new nation, Jefferson the philosopher, who was a failure as a plantation owner, and Jefferson the man, who is revealed in his personal correspondence.
How Jefferson was able to make that charge ( against the king re slavery), while owning slaves himself, requires stretching reason beyond the breaking point.
There could be but one explanation and rationale for Jefferson being conflicted and his apparent ambivalence re slavery:
While he saw the enslavement of human beings as inherently evil and morally and ethically wrong, he did not, could not, bring himself to conclude that black people were human beings...
He was aided by the generally held Christian tenet that unbaptized "heathens" were somehow subhuman.or non-human creatures "disfavored by God"....
What I don’t know is what we should do with the information. Where do we put him?
When we turn historical figures into saints or satans, we cheat ourselves and posterity. In doing so, we turn them into caricatures and cartoons, rather than view them as men and women, with all their human foibles and flaws.
If we are to learn from history, it must be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Special thanks to Tom Cordle and Koshersalaami the unwitting co-authors of this vignette...