ADOS

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lol @deuce koon cozying up with his dream candidate
Negro be quiet. I don’t even like Bernie Sanders.....I cant wait for him to fail. Nothing worse than a fake woke dude like yourself that still lives at home with their momma and doesn’t have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of.

#FailBernie2020
 
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Joined Feb 18, 2017


What Reparations for Slavery Might Look Like in 2019
By Patricia Cohen

May 23, 2019
If you’re surprised that the issue of reparations for black Americans has taken so long to resolve, blame the president. President Andrew Johnson.

As the Civil War wound down in 1865, Gen. William T. Sherman made the promise that would come to be known as “40 acres and a mule” — redistributing a huge tract of Atlantic coastline to black Americans recently freed from bondage. President Abraham Lincoln and Congress gave their approval, and soon 40,000 freedmen in the South had started to plant and build.

Within months of Lincoln’s assassination, though, President Johnson rescinded the order and returned the land to its former owners. Congress made another attempt at compensation, but Johnson vetoed it.

Now, in the early phase of the 2020 presidential campaign, the question of compensating black Americans for suffering under slavery and other forms of racial injustice has resurfaced. The current effort focuses on a congressional billthat would commission a study on reparations, a version of legislation first introduced in 1989. Several Democratic presidential hopefuls have declared their support, including Senators Kamala Harris of California, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Cory Booker of New Jersey and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro.

If this latest revival has excited supporters, it has worried some party moderates who fear that such an effort would alienate many voters. Polls have shown a big deficit in popular support. While a majority of black Americans in a 2016 Marist poll supported reparations, whites rejected it by an overwhelming margin.

[For more coverage of race, sign up here to have our Race/Related newsletter delivered weekly to your inbox.]

The reparations issue raises profound moral, social and political considerations. Still, the economic nuts and bolts of such a program have gotten scant public attention: Who would be paid? How much? Where would the money come from?

Through the decades, a handful of scholars have taken a shot at creating a road map. Here’s what has to be reckoned with.

What’s the economic rationale?
When James Forman, a civil rights pioneer who later served briefly as the Black Panther Party’s foreign minister, demanded $500 million in reparations in his 1969 Black Manifesto, he grounded his argument in an indisputable fact: Unpaid slave labor helped build the American economy, creating vast wealth that African-Americans were barred from sharing.

The manifesto called for white Christian churches and Jewish synagogues to pay for projects like a black university and a Southern land bank. “We have helped to build the most industrial country in the world,” it declared, at the same time that “racist white America has exploited our resources, our minds, our bodies, our labor.”

Another civil rights leader, Bayard Rustin, responded, “If my great-grandfather picked cotton for 50 years, then he may deserve some money, but he’s dead and gone and nobody owes me anything.”

The question of reparations, however, extends far beyond the roughly four million people who were enslaved when the Civil War started, as Ta-Nehisi Coates explained in an influential essay published in The Atlantic in 2014. Legalized discrimination and state-sanctioned brutality, murder, dispossession and disenfranchisement continued long after the war ended. That history profoundly handicapped black Americans’ ability to create and accumulate wealth as well as to gain access to jobs, housing, education and health care.

For every dollar a typical white household holds, a black one has 10 cents. It is this cumulative effect that justifies the payment of reparations to descendants of slaves long dead, supporters say.

“Equality is not likely to be obtained without some form of reparations,” David H. Swinton, an economist and former president of Benedict College, wrote in the 1990 collection “The Wealth of Races.”

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times


Shawn Theodore for The New York Times
Who would be paid?
Nearly 47 million Americans identified themselves as black or African-American in the latest census. A vast majority are descended from slaves, but others are more recent migrants. So who would qualify for a payment?

William A. Darity Jr., an economist at Duke University and a leading scholar on reparations, suggests two qualifying conditions: having at least one ancestor who was enslaved in the United States, and having identified oneself as African-American on a legal document for at least a decade before the approval of any reparations. The 10-year rule, he said, would help screen out anyone trying to cash in on a windfall.

According to these criteria, Oprah Winfrey, who has traced her DNA to slaves captured in West Africa in the early 19th century, would qualify. Former President Barack Obama, the son of a white American mother and a Kenyan father, would not. Mr. Darity estimates that roughly 30 million Americans would be eligible.

Tracing genealogy back to the slave-owning era is difficult. But the search begins by comparing the 1870 census, when freed slaves were first counted by name, with the one taken in 1860, when they weren’t. Other sources include military service and pension records, slave-ship manifests, and estate and inheritance documents.

As for taking account of current wealth, a reparations program could link potential payouts to income and asset levels.

How much would recipients get?
Attaching a dollar figure to a program of reparations resembles a “Wheel of Fortune” spin, with amounts ranging from the piddling ($71.08 per recipient under Forman’s plan) to the astronomical ($17 trillion in total).

Over the decades, some economists have tried to come up with a quantifiable basis for a fair sum. Mr. Swinton, for example, estimated in 1983 that 40 to 60 percent of the difference between black and white income could be attributed to past and continuing discrimination, and put the figure at $500 billion.

Some economists evaluated labor’s share of the slave system’s profits in cotton and tobacco. Others have looked at what slaves would have earned if they had been paid wages plus interest, after subtracting housing and food costs. One study looked at 20th-century statistics, estimating how much less blacks earned because of decades of discrimination. Another examined the value of black wealth lost or destroyed after slavery ended, through practices like redlining that denied lending or insurance to African-American communities, or organized riots like the 1921 rampage that leveled the Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa, known as “Black Wall Street.”

A recurring theme has been to return to that first official action promising 40 acres and a mule. Sherman drew up his order after posing this directive to a group of black ministers and leaders: “State in what manner you think you can take care of yourselves.”

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times
What would Sherman’s promise be worth today?
Mr. Darity has been mulling that question for years, and is writing a book on reparations with Kirsten Mullen, due out next year. He begins with the cost of an acre in 1865: about $10. Forty acres divided among a family of four comes to 10 acres per person, or about $100 for each of the four million former slaves. Taking account of compounding interest and inflation, Mr. Darity has put the present value at $2.6 trillion. Assuming roughly 30 million descendants of ex-slaves, he concluded it worked out to about $80,000 a person.

To get a sense of the scale, consider that the United States budget this year is $4.7 trillion.

Of course, varying any critical assumption can add or subtract billions or trillions of dollars.

Thomas Craemer, an associate professor of public policy at the University of Connecticut, used the same starting point — 40 acres and a mule — but a different method in a study published last year. He used the current average price of agricultural land and figured that 40 acres of farmland and buildings would amount to roughly $123,000. If all of the four million slaves counted in the 1860 census had been able to take advantage of that offer, it would have totaled more than $486 billion today — or about $16,200 for each descendant of slaves.

What form would payment take?
Compensation programs can take many forms. In the United States, after a congressional study, people of Japanese descent who were forced into internment camps during World War II received $20,000 in 1988 and a formal apology.

Since 1952, Germany has paid more than $70 billion in reparations through various programs, primarily to Jewish victims of the Nazi regime, and continues to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Payments vary from a lump sum distributed to individuals to a monthly pension based on years working in a slave labor camp. Money is also given to organizations to cover home care for older survivors or for grants. A small portion goes for research, education and documentation.

A reparations program in the United States could likewise adopt a single method or several at once. Families could get a one-time check, receive vouchers for medical insurance or college, or have access to a trust fund to finance a business or a home. Mr. Darity argues that “for both substantive and symbolic reasons, some important component must be direct payment to eligible recipients.”

Other scholars have emphasized different features. Roy L. Brooks, a law professor at the University of San Diego and the author of “Atonement and Forgiveness: A New Model for Black Reparations,” has reservations about what he calls the “settlement model,” a legalistic approach that looks backward to compensate victims for demonstrable financial losses. He prefers what he calls the “atonement model,” emphasizing longer-term investments in education, housing and businesses that build up wealth.

What would the economic impact be?
According to the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, the median wealth of black households is $16,000, compared with $163,000 for whites. Reparations are not likely to eliminate the racial wealth gap, but could narrow it somewhat. Low-income families, with the fewest assets, would benefit the most.

The biggest economic objection is that any meaningful program would be unaffordable. Like other government spending, reparations would ultimately be paid for by some kind of tax or fee, or borrowing, say, through government bonds. Such a program would almost certainly require increasing the federal debt and be structured over time.

Those less worried about a growing deficit could argue that reparations would be a boon over the long run — lifting people out of poverty, and improving their earning potential and buying power.



https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/23/business/economy/reparations-slavery.html?&moduleDetail=section-news-5&action=click&contentCollection=Politics&region=Footer&module=MoreInSection&version=WhatsNext&contentID=WhatsNext&pgtype=article
 
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What Reparations for Slavery Might Look Like in 2019
By Patricia Cohen

May 23, 2019
If you’re surprised that the issue of reparations for black Americans has taken so long to resolve, blame the president. President Andrew Johnson.

As the Civil War wound down in 1865, Gen. William T. Sherman made the promise that would come to be known as “40 acres and a mule” — redistributing a huge tract of Atlantic coastline to black Americans recently freed from bondage. President Abraham Lincoln and Congress gave their approval, and soon 40,000 freedmen in the South had started to plant and build.

Within months of Lincoln’s assassination, though, President Johnson rescinded the order and returned the land to its former owners. Congress made another attempt at compensation, but Johnson vetoed it.

Now, in the early phase of the 2020 presidential campaign, the question of compensating black Americans for suffering under slavery and other forms of racial injustice has resurfaced. The current effort focuses on a congressional billthat would commission a study on reparations, a version of legislation first introduced in 1989. Several Democratic presidential hopefuls have declared their support, including Senators Kamala Harris of California, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Cory Booker of New Jersey and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro.

If this latest revival has excited supporters, it has worried some party moderates who fear that such an effort would alienate many voters. Polls have shown a big deficit in popular support. While a majority of black Americans in a 2016 Marist poll supported reparations, whites rejected it by an overwhelming margin.

[For more coverage of race, sign up here to have our Race/Related newsletter delivered weekly to your inbox.]

The reparations issue raises profound moral, social and political considerations. Still, the economic nuts and bolts of such a program have gotten scant public attention: Who would be paid? How much? Where would the money come from?

Through the decades, a handful of scholars have taken a shot at creating a road map. Here’s what has to be reckoned with.

What’s the economic rationale?
When James Forman, a civil rights pioneer who later served briefly as the Black Panther Party’s foreign minister, demanded $500 million in reparations in his 1969 Black Manifesto, he grounded his argument in an indisputable fact: Unpaid slave labor helped build the American economy, creating vast wealth that African-Americans were barred from sharing.

The manifesto called for white Christian churches and Jewish synagogues to pay for projects like a black university and a Southern land bank. “We have helped to build the most industrial country in the world,” it declared, at the same time that “racist white America has exploited our resources, our minds, our bodies, our labor.”

Another civil rights leader, Bayard Rustin, responded, “If my great-grandfather picked cotton for 50 years, then he may deserve some money, but he’s dead and gone and nobody owes me anything.”

The question of reparations, however, extends far beyond the roughly four million people who were enslaved when the Civil War started, as Ta-Nehisi Coates explained in an influential essay published in The Atlantic in 2014. Legalized discrimination and state-sanctioned brutality, murder, dispossession and disenfranchisement continued long after the war ended. That history profoundly handicapped black Americans’ ability to create and accumulate wealth as well as to gain access to jobs, housing, education and health care.

For every dollar a typical white household holds, a black one has 10 cents. It is this cumulative effect that justifies the payment of reparations to descendants of slaves long dead, supporters say.

“Equality is not likely to be obtained without some form of reparations,” David H. Swinton, an economist and former president of Benedict College, wrote in the 1990 collection “The Wealth of Races.”

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times


Shawn Theodore for The New York Times
Who would be paid?
Nearly 47 million Americans identified themselves as black or African-American in the latest census. A vast majority are descended from slaves, but others are more recent migrants. So who would qualify for a payment?

William A. Darity Jr., an economist at Duke University and a leading scholar on reparations, suggests two qualifying conditions: having at least one ancestor who was enslaved in the United States, and having identified oneself as African-American on a legal document for at least a decade before the approval of any reparations. The 10-year rule, he said, would help screen out anyone trying to cash in on a windfall.

According to these criteria, Oprah Winfrey, who has traced her DNA to slaves captured in West Africa in the early 19th century, would qualify. Former President Barack Obama, the son of a white American mother and a Kenyan father, would not. Mr. Darity estimates that roughly 30 million Americans would be eligible.

Tracing genealogy back to the slave-owning era is difficult. But the search begins by comparing the 1870 census, when freed slaves were first counted by name, with the one taken in 1860, when they weren’t. Other sources include military service and pension records, slave-ship manifests, and estate and inheritance documents.

As for taking account of current wealth, a reparations program could link potential payouts to income and asset levels.

How much would recipients get?
Attaching a dollar figure to a program of reparations resembles a “Wheel of Fortune” spin, with amounts ranging from the piddling ($71.08 per recipient under Forman’s plan) to the astronomical ($17 trillion in total).

Over the decades, some economists have tried to come up with a quantifiable basis for a fair sum. Mr. Swinton, for example, estimated in 1983 that 40 to 60 percent of the difference between black and white income could be attributed to past and continuing discrimination, and put the figure at $500 billion.

Some economists evaluated labor’s share of the slave system’s profits in cotton and tobacco. Others have looked at what slaves would have earned if they had been paid wages plus interest, after subtracting housing and food costs. One study looked at 20th-century statistics, estimating how much less blacks earned because of decades of discrimination. Another examined the value of black wealth lost or destroyed after slavery ended, through practices like redlining that denied lending or insurance to African-American communities, or organized riots like the 1921 rampage that leveled the Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa, known as “Black Wall Street.”

A recurring theme has been to return to that first official action promising 40 acres and a mule. Sherman drew up his order after posing this directive to a group of black ministers and leaders: “State in what manner you think you can take care of yourselves.”

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times

Shawn Theodore for The New York Times
What would Sherman’s promise be worth today?
Mr. Darity has been mulling that question for years, and is writing a book on reparations with Kirsten Mullen, due out next year. He begins with the cost of an acre in 1865: about $10. Forty acres divided among a family of four comes to 10 acres per person, or about $100 for each of the four million former slaves. Taking account of compounding interest and inflation, Mr. Darity has put the present value at $2.6 trillion. Assuming roughly 30 million descendants of ex-slaves, he concluded it worked out to about $80,000 a person.

To get a sense of the scale, consider that the United States budget this year is $4.7 trillion.

Of course, varying any critical assumption can add or subtract billions or trillions of dollars.

Thomas Craemer, an associate professor of public policy at the University of Connecticut, used the same starting point — 40 acres and a mule — but a different method in a study published last year. He used the current average price of agricultural land and figured that 40 acres of farmland and buildings would amount to roughly $123,000. If all of the four million slaves counted in the 1860 census had been able to take advantage of that offer, it would have totaled more than $486 billion today — or about $16,200 for each descendant of slaves.

What form would payment take?
Compensation programs can take many forms. In the United States, after a congressional study, people of Japanese descent who were forced into internment camps during World War II received $20,000 in 1988 and a formal apology.

Since 1952, Germany has paid more than $70 billion in reparations through various programs, primarily to Jewish victims of the Nazi regime, and continues to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Payments vary from a lump sum distributed to individuals to a monthly pension based on years working in a slave labor camp. Money is also given to organizations to cover home care for older survivors or for grants. A small portion goes for research, education and documentation.

A reparations program in the United States could likewise adopt a single method or several at once. Families could get a one-time check, receive vouchers for medical insurance or college, or have access to a trust fund to finance a business or a home. Mr. Darity argues that “for both substantive and symbolic reasons, some important component must be direct payment to eligible recipients.”

Other scholars have emphasized different features. Roy L. Brooks, a law professor at the University of San Diego and the author of “Atonement and Forgiveness: A New Model for Black Reparations,” has reservations about what he calls the “settlement model,” a legalistic approach that looks backward to compensate victims for demonstrable financial losses. He prefers what he calls the “atonement model,” emphasizing longer-term investments in education, housing and businesses that build up wealth.

What would the economic impact be?
According to the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, the median wealth of black households is $16,000, compared with $163,000 for whites. Reparations are not likely to eliminate the racial wealth gap, but could narrow it somewhat. Low-income families, with the fewest assets, would benefit the most.

The biggest economic objection is that any meaningful program would be unaffordable. Like other government spending, reparations would ultimately be paid for by some kind of tax or fee, or borrowing, say, through government bonds. Such a program would almost certainly require increasing the federal debt and be structured over time.

Those less worried about a growing deficit could argue that reparations would be a boon over the long run — lifting people out of poverty, and improving their earning potential and buying power.



https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/23/business/economy/reparations-slavery.html?&moduleDetail=section-news-5&action=click&contentCollection=Politics&region=Footer&module=MoreInSection&version=WhatsNext&contentID=WhatsNext&pgtype=article
whole article a bunch of reasons why its suppose to happen
veiled under why it shouldn't happen :smh:
 
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Joined Jan 11, 2013
Laura Ingraham Dismisses Reparations: ‘No Do-Overs...We Won, You Lost, That’s That’



Laura Ingraham Dismisses Reparations: ‘No Do-Overs...We Won, You Lost, That’s That’

Fox News star Laura Ingraham waded into the ongoing debate over reparations for descendants of slaves during her podcast on Thursday by proclaiming there are no “do-overs” after a “conquest.”

Talking to Kentucky State professor and ‘Hate Crime Hoax’ author Wilford Reilly about the recent House hearing on reparations, Ingraham played a clip of author Ta-Nehisi Coates taking Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to task for saying reparations are unnecessary because Americans elected Barack Obama as president.

After praising McConnell’s remarks, Reilly stated that the logistics of paying reparations would be far too difficult before wondering if Native Americans would then be next to request compensation over their treatment.

“I mean, obviously both white and black soldiers, frankly, took this country from the Indians—the first people,” Reilly added.

“People would argue that the whole world, and I would, the whole world has been reshaped by people taking other people's land,” Ingraham weighed in. “It's called conquest.”

Mentioning past empires and how there was a “totally different map” in the past, Ingraham—whose own brother thinks she is a “monster”—then complained that “they want to live in a fake world,” presumably talking about liberals.

As Trump always says, ‘You don't get do-overs,’” she declared. “No do-overs, that's it. There was an argument, sometime—I think it was the 1980s. There was a quote, you won, we lost, that's that. Describing world politics, we won, you lost, that's that. That's just the way it is.”

Ingraham’s racially inflammatory rhetoric has ignited a firestorm of controversy in recent months and led to advertisers dropping her Fox News program. Recently, she defended a virulent anti-Semite on her primetime cable news show, describing him as merely a “prominent voice” who has been censored by social media for having conservative values.
 
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Senate Democrats Wish Talk on Reparations Would Go Away


GETTY IMAGES

https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/450549-senate-democrats-wish-talk-on-reparations-would-go-away

Senate Democrats are not fans of legislation on reparations for slavery, which has become a hot topic in the 2020 presidential campaign.

Democratic lawmakers acknowledge that slavery is a terrible stain on the nation's history and that African Americans were subjected to unjust and racist laws for decades after abolition.

But the question of figuring out who should pay for economic harm accrued over hundreds of years is a political land mine.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), the senior Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, said she understands why some thought leaders, such as author Ta-Nehisi Coates, are calling for reparations, but warned the issue is divisive.

"I understand why. I also understand the wound that it opens and the trials and tribulations it's going to bring about. Some things are just better left alone and I think that's one of those things," she said.

"This is a major blemish on American democracy that has lasted for over 100 years now," she said of slavery and discriminatory laws that followed the Civil War. "It's not going to change and we have to learn from it and I think we have."

Many Democrats don't want to talk about whether reparations should be considered.

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said "I saw something in the press about it. I haven't even looked at it."

"I'll be happy to look at it," he added.

Support for reparations has steadily grown since June 2014 when Coates, as a writer for The Atlantic magazine, wrote his landmark essay: "The Case for Reparations."

The subject gained more prominence last week when Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), a member of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and sponsor of the House reparations measure, held a hearing on reparations at which Coates testified.

On the campaign trail, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) has spearheaded the push for reparations. He is the sponsor of the Senate bill that would set up a commission to study the impact of slavery and discrimination against African Americans and make recommendations on reparation proposals to the descendants of slaves.

Booker's bill has 14 Senate co-sponsors, including five presidential hopefuls: Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.).

But many other Democrats are keeping their distance.

"I haven't seen it and I don't have any opinion about it," Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) said of Booker's legislation.

Other Democrats say they need to learn more about it.

"Still learning about it but open to the idea, certainly. I find Cory to be one of the more thoughtful people I've ever known," said Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.).

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) said of Booker's bill, "I'm looking at the legislation [on setting up a commission] but have not taken a position on it."

One Democratic senator said reparations is one more issue getting touted on the campaign trail that Republicans will likely use as ammunition against other Democratic candidates in 2020, along with proposals such as "Medicare for All," the Green New Deal and free college education.

The lawmaker, who requested anonymity, said Democrats would be better off focusing on topics that unite voters and where they have an advantage over Republicans, like protecting people with pre-existing medical conditions.

"In a presidential campaign where people are eyeing different constituencies based on where they're trying to run and where they're trying to do well and break through the pack, that makes a lot of sense. I don't think that has much of a chance in the Congress we're in," said the senator.

"If you're just talking presidential Democratic primaries, there's interest in these issues and hearing it explained. When you start getting into specific Senate races, I don't know how that helps, the contrast of a presidential candidate being for something and a Democratic Senate candidate not taking a position," the lawmaker said, adding that Republican Senate candidates are going to "have a lot of issues like that" to pull from the presidential race.

The lawmaker expressed concern that with more than 20 candidates running for the Democratic nomination, the party's message is going to be all over the place.

"Central for us is trying to get one message and be disciplined, because the president is going to be incredibly disciplined," the senator said. "They're starting messaging on things they haven't even accomplished but making it sound like they accomplished things."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) says his strategy to keep GOP control of the Senate is to tie Democratic candidates to liberal proposals being pushed by Harris, Booker, Warren, Sanders and other White House hopefuls.

McConnell told reporters in April that Republicans need to say to voters, "if you're uncomfortable with things like the Green New Deal and 'Medicare for None,' the best way to avoid that is to have a Republican Senate."

McConnell last week dismissed reparations as unworkable.

"I don't think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago, for whom none of us currently living are responsible, is a good idea," he said.

It's a good issue for Republicans because it unites the GOP and divides Democrats.

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), the only African American Republican in the Senate, last week dismissed reparations as a "non-starter."

In an interview with The Hill this week, President Trump indicated he's not in favor of reparations.

"I think it's a very unusual thing," Trump said of the possibility of reparations. "You have a lot of - it's been a very interesting debate. I don't see it happening, no."

National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Todd Young (Ind.) said reparations is targeted squarely at the most liberal voters.

"I think it will excite the far left of the Democratic Party, which is exactly what it's designed to do," he said.

Sen. Christopher c00ns (D-Del.), a co-sponsor of Booker's bill on reparations, said slavery "has left a long and real and lasting impact" that needs to be addressed.

But he also acknowledged "there are real complexities around confronting this issue."

"Figuring out a viable path forward in terms of who would be compensated and how and from what source of funding is a very thorny question," he said.
 
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Jews Cautious On Reparations For Blacks
Groups, thought leaders treading carefully on thorny issue emerging in presidential race.


Author Ta-Nehisi Coates at last week’s congressional hearing on African-American reparations. Getty Images

Jews Cautious On Reparations For Blacks

One of the hottest, and thorniest, issues to emerge in the early stage of the 2020 presidential election — reparations, payments to the descendants of slaves — seems to have an obvious Jewish connection. Jewish faith (repeated reminders in the Torah that Jews were slaves in Egypt) and Jewish fate (post-Holocaust reparations made by the German government) would point to a natural affinity between Jews and blacks on this topic.

But the Jewish community seems to be divided on a complex issue that lies at the intersection of race, justice, income inequality and national economics.

Democratic candidates’ opinions have ranged between outright support to skepticism about the proposal’s economic viability. Many proponents of such reparations cite as precedent the payments — some $70 billion to date, according to estimates — that Germany has made to the State of Israel, and to individual Holocaust survivors in several countries in the decades since 1953.

Yet a groundswell of backing in the Jewish community for reparations to slaves’ descendants appears not to have developed. And leaders of the current reparations campaign do not appear to have called on persons familiar with the German Wiedergutmachung (literally, making good again) payments for advice.

While the Jewish community, on the whole, has expressed respect for the payments that the German government, banks, insurance companies and other firms have made to Jewish recipients, sometimes after intense public pressure, prominent Jewish organizations and thought leaders are treading carefully on the subject of reparations for African-Americans, as they have on related social issues like affirmative action.


A T’ruah delegation of rabbis and cantors last fall at the Legacy Museum and the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Ala. Jill Friedman/Courtesy of T’ruah

During the start of this election cycle, the national conversation on this topic was spurred by a number of factors: a call for reparations made by longshot Democratic (and Jewish) candidate Marianne Williamson; an influential 2014 article in The Atlantic by author Ta-Nehisi Coates on “The Case for Reparations”; the reintroduction into the House of Representatives of a bill that would establish “a commission to study and consider a national apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery”; and a House hearing on the bill.

“Apologies are a necessary first step, but they alone cannot solve the present iniquities born of our nation’s original sin: slavery,” said Rep. Steve Cohen, a co-sponsor of the House bill who in 2007 and 2008 introduced a resolution officially apologizing for slavery and Jim Crow.

“Reparations can be a contentious issue, but it will be impossible for us to close the racial wealth gap if we aren’t willing to acknowledge the source of this problem or explore the full range of possible solutions.”

Problems raised by opponents of widescale reparations include the difficulty of determining who is descended from slaves, as well as the financial burden on the U.S. treasury of multi-billion-dollar payments.

“These aren’t simply technical issues — these are fundamental, practical issues that I deem likely to be insurmountable,” said Kenneth Feinberg, an attorney specializing in mediation and alternative dispute resolution, who served as special master of the U.S. government’s September 11 Victim Compensation Fund.

“How do you prove eligibility? How do you calculate [the amount of] the award?” Feinberg asked. He said he favors “some sort of social programs … public policies designed to give a special boost to the African-American community.”

On the other hand, several prominent rabbis have supported reparations in sermons and essays. Rabbi Sharon Brous, founder of the Los Angeles-based IKAR congregation, wrote in The Los Angeles Times that “Paying reparations to African Americans would not heal generations of trauma, nor would it erase systemic racial injustices. But it would offer some financial redress. And most significantly, it would start a reckoning that our country desperately needs.”

Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz, founder of the Uri L’Tzedek social justice organization, wrote in an online essay that, “In Jewish religious and philosophical thought, there is a framework that addresses the concept of not being excused from past debts. Reparations are not punitive; they’re restorative.” And Rabbi Aryeh Bernstein, educational consultant for the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, wrote in an online essay, “The Torah Case for Reparations,” that, “The concept of reparations is remarkably basic and intuitive: when you steal, you must make restitution.”

Several Jewish supporters of reparations pointed to the Egyptian riches that the departing Hebrew slaves received when their exodus from the land of slavery began, the Torah prohibition against sending away a slave emptyhanded and the obligation to make financial restitution that Maimonides lists as a requirement for repentance.

Stuart Eizenstat, who negotiated major agreements with Switzerland, Germany, Austria, France and other European countries on restitution of property and payment for slave and forced laborers, said it is a mistake to conflate WWII reparations to the proponent payments to slave descendants.

“The difference [between the two cases],” he told The Jewish Week, is that “we have difficulty establishing the lineage [of contemporary African-Americans] to a particular slave who lived in the South in the 19th century,” while the recipients of German reparations “were actually alive” in the decades after World War II.

That position was echoed by Thane Rosenbaum, an attorney and author who is the son of Holocaust survivors who received reparation payments.

Might Jewish reluctance to full support for reparation payments to African-Americans harm relations between the two minority communities?

“That ship has sailed,” Rosenbaum said. In other words, black-Jewish relations have become increasingly frayed since the high point of wide Jewish support for the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s.

The Anti-Defamation League has taken no official position on reparations. The Conference of Jewish Material Claims against Germany (aka The Claims Conference), which has served as the Jewish community’s lead negotiator over reparation payments, said in a statement that “While this is an important and timely discussion, it falls outside the scope of the Claims Conference.” The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, while declining to comment directly on the subject, offered a recent statement, on the context of comparisons between wartime concentration camps and the treatment of illegal aliens in this country, that the museum “unequivocally rejects efforts to create analogies between the Holocaust and other events.”

“The bigger [Jewish] organizations have to go through more process” of deliberation and consultation before deciding on a policy about reparations, said Rabbi Jonah Pesner, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, which has appointed a task force to articulate the movement’s “formal policy.”

Rabbi Pesner declined to speculate whether the RAC, which typically takes liberal stands on social policy issues, will endorse reparations. He added, “we take this issue very seriously. Racism is a priority for us.”

“It’s unfortunate that large organizations are taking a pass,” said Rabbi Sandra Lawson, an educator and chaplain at Elon University in Elon, N.C. “We should find way to [recognize] our original sin. It’s no longer just a left issue.”

Rabbi Lawson, who is African-American, said she, like most of the black community, is in favor of reparations as part of a larger effort to erase the national legacy of slavery. She said her school has appointed a commission to study the role that slavery played in the institution’s history.

Rabbi Lev Meirowitz Nelson, director of rabbinic training at T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, who spearheads T’ruah’s racial justice activities, said his organization “welcomes the discussion of reparations” and is sympathetic to the arguments for them, but has taken no official position “yet.” “When you do a wrong, you have an obligation to rectify it. You owe compensation for whatever damage you caused,” Rabbi Rabbi Meirowitz Nelson said.

What effect will discussion about reparations have on black-Jewish relations?

“A lot depends on how it’s handled,” Rabbi Meirowitz Nelson said. “It has the potential for being a good [outcome] if it’s handled well.” And harmful, “if it’s handled poorly.”
 
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Much of Africa is a mess, and they have to fix their problems on their own. We can’t help them.

People throw that broad Pan Africanist term around.

What are examples of actual Pan African progress or tangibles that concern black Americans?
Perception and security. If African countries were doing well, we as a whole would be perceived in a more positive manner. Also, we would probably be more encouraged to make connections with them since we're linked to them through ancestry. When people have unfavorable notions about us, they use the plight of Africans and African-Americans alike as an example. This is why I always pray for Africas future. I want my lineage to visit there and be proud of where their ancestors come from originally.
 
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Thought he was a stand-up dude. :smh:
Never really paid that much attention to him. Heard what he was doing for Tulsa and thought it was cool though. He sound like one of these dudes that's tryna sound super deep and ends up sounding f'n stupid. White people are not racist because "black people don't respect each other". That's a weak deflecting talking point and it's false. As a whole black people are real respectful to each other but that's besides the point.

If somebody enslaved you and used you to build their wealth/economy you're suppose to go to them and get whats owed to you.
 
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Never really paid that much attention to him. Heard what he was doing for Tulsa and thought it was cool though. He sound like one of these dudes that's tryna sound super deep and ends up sounding f'n stupid. White people are not racist because "black people don't respect each other". That's a weak deflecting talking point and it's false. As a whole black people are real respectful to each other but that's besides the point.

If somebody enslaved you and used you to build their wealth/economy you're suppose to go to them and get whats owed to you.
Bruh definitely has fake deep vibes. The whole setup of that video and his little speech was corny. Not only does he not get it but the added music in the background was wack. All this shows me is what history has shown. Well off to do black folks will never be able to properly lead because they are far removed from the struggle and feelings of the people. Gonna take change at the grass roots level for there to be serious change.
 
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