Reparations – What do you think?

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    • #75469
      Thom Paine
      • Total Posts: 280

      The corporate media brought up the question of reparations for those whose families were slaves to trap Sen Sanders.  Sen Harris and Sen Booker had no problem answering that they support reparations (sight unseen).  Sen Sanders gave the honest response that he would have to know what reparations actually entailed.  Wolf Blitzer nearly had a baby trying to get Bernie to say no.  Bernie is too honest to simply say yes like the others.  Of course the Corp-Media took Bernies failure to say yes and ran with the story, “Sen Sanders refuses to support reparations.”

      Reparations to me looks like quick sand.  How much could be payed without making it an insult?  And who would be the recipients?  The troubles for the AA community didn’t end with slavery and are alive and thriving (the troubles) today.   The Clintons and Biden passed laws that has seen and still seeing millions being incarcerated for profits for the prison industry.   And Obama pretended that he didn’t know that innocent AA were being gunned down by trigger happy white police.  There is a hell of a lot that needs to be done today.

    • #75472
      • Total Posts: 5,299

      Too little, too late.

      The US doesn’t even pay reparations to brown people being killed in Asia and the Middle East every day. Who makes the judgements. How far back to we go. Can we pay it forward somehow?

      It’s a feel-good movement whose every effort would be questioned, double-checked, compared to, judged against and ultimately insufficient. We need to make reparations to the soul of white America.

      Just my 2 cents.


    • #75476
      Cold Mountain Trail
      • Total Posts: 10,658

      I think it’s a trap specifically designed to take out Sanders.

      And you can bet Harris & Booker, should they be elected, will wind up not doing it or letting it fail by design.

      And personally I think if things don’t change in the US, reparations would a one-time check that wouldn’t produce any lasting change overall (though no doubt would for many individuals).  But the trajectory we’re currently on is continuing impoverishment for most americans & black americans especially, because a lot of black americans have way less backup (property/cash) to fall back on.  And even that back-up ain’t enough for most americans, not just black americans (re the research that about half of americans would be devastated by an unexpected $400 bill)


    • #75480
      David the Gnome
      • Total Posts: 2,799

      I think we need to be able to tax the rich first.  Assuming that happens some day… maybe.

    • #75481
      • Total Posts: 367

      Reparations are a cynical ploy only.  That’s it.  Who gets paid reparations?  Do you have to take a DNA test to find the percentage of African blood?  Would I get any reparations if I took a DNA test and found some long lost ancestor who was a slave?

      It’s all a bullshit trap for Bernie.  NOTHING more.  Also, NOONE in the real world supports this silliness.

    • #75487
      NV Wino
      • Total Posts: 6,457


      Where do you start? Native Americans,  whom we still treat like shit? Mexicanos whose land we annexed? Dependents of slaves? What about the blacks we ignore today? What about… well you get the idea.

      “As we act, let us not become the evil that we deplore.” Barbara Lee
      “Politicians and pro athletes: The only people who still get paid when they lose.” William Rivers Pitt

      • #75495
        Thom Paine
        • Total Posts: 280

        Well said.  How about Vietnamese (agent orange, the gift that keeps on killing), how about the Iraqi’s (depleted uranium, again a gift that keeps on killing).  As Bernie said in his words, we need to fix what we can today.

    • #75489
      David the Gnome
      • Total Posts: 2,799


      I think you are probably right.  I think that it is an issue intended to divide us.  Heck, the government has refused to fund healthcare and education, roads and bridges.  No way they are going to legitimately support reparations.

      In my not so humble opinion, it is better to do things that help everyone.  Universal healthcare and free college. Some Countries actually give their students a stipend instead of burying them in debt.

    • #75491
      David the Gnome
      • Total Posts: 2,799
    • #75508
      • Total Posts: 2,833

      reparations were proposed in the late 60s as collective, not as a one-and-done paycheck to each ancestor of someone enslaved (so American, innit? “take your cash and be done with it”) IOW they were seen as specific measures to address mortgage redlining, farm-loan discrimination, transit and food “deserts,” even sickle-cell clinics

      so Sanders and the others are actually better prepared for this question than someone just suggesting to cut a check to the Great Migration

    • #75513
      Flying Squirrel
      • Total Posts: 546

      You can’t make reparations for past oppression while continuing to oppress people. Or, I guess you could, but it would be disingenuous. OTOH if all the money we’ve spent on wars in the past 20 years had been spent on reparations instead, this would be a better country and a better world.  It would be impossible to truly make up for all that has been lost, but that’s no reason not to at least put forth the effort. But it has to be paired with ongoing work fixing the current system. Right now it’s just being used as a political “gotcha” football, though.

    • #75521
      • Total Posts: 1,738

      I will agree that we owe a lot of people reparations. But I do not trust the whole idea of reparations. What has happened in the past is the biggest reason for the problems that keep the victims from having the same standing as the rest of us. They were all in one way or the other kept from taking advantage of economic resources that helped the rich get richer.

      BUT any reparation that congress approves of will NOT make up for the real cost of the harm done. What will happen is that good old boys will pay the one time reparation which will not be enough to make real change happen and then when the poor (all of us) need help again the rich will remind the needy – you got yours – why should we do it again.

      That is why I think that Bernie is saying that much more is needed than a one time reparations that will hurt them in the long run more than what Bernie wants to do. We were on the right track in the 70s with education, etc. But we did not go far enough. And then along came raygun and the Rs and corporate Ds and things have been getting worse instead of better. Free college education, Medicare for All, decent housing etc. will have a long term effect that will help more.

      The one issue that is going to be harder to fix is jobs. The rich sold us out to China and if the New Green Deal doesn’t fix that then I don’t know what will.


    • #75552
      Babel 17
      • Total Posts: 4,155

      Under some versions, President Obama would owe reparations to his daughters, as he is half white, and not descended at all from those who were slaves in America. His daughters would only get half shares.

      And I don’t want to be the person to tell those descended from Chinese laborers who put in the railroads in the 1800s that they would have to kick in. Nor do I want to tell people who’s ancestors settled in states that never had slavery, welcomed runaway slaves, and then fought and bled in the Civil War to defeat the South that they owe money because of a campaign promise concocted by privileged elites.

      Ditto that for telling those newly arrived here, like refugees from Africa, that they owe money to people who might be very well to do.

      Those descended from the influx of immigrants at the turn of the 20th century who broke their back for low wages to build up the economic might of this country might start wondering why they’d want to vote for a party that would hit them with the cost of reparations.

      Maybe the plan is to re-elect Trump, continue doing no real work, and just keep taking money as one of the Villagers in Washington?

      • #75573
        Cold Mountain Trail
        • Total Posts: 10,658

        “Under some versions, President Obama would owe reparations to his daughters, as he is half white, and not descended at all from those who were slaves in America.”

        The only ‘black’ in Obama’s lineage is his Kenyan dad.  Obama’s ancestors on his ‘white’ side include several slave owners: Mareen Duvall the Emigrant (b. France 1625, emigrated to Md 1650: 18 slaves) being the first.


      • #75741
        Babel 17
        • Total Posts: 4,155

        I neglected to work through how some versions of reparations would affect President Obama’s daughters. They would neither owe, nor get anything. Their African American ancestry would get them a half share, but their non-AA ancestry would mean that they owed a half share. President Obama would still owe a full share, same as would anyone with no ancestors who had been slaves in the USA.

        Pretty horrible imagining government workers going around and checking up on the worthiness of ones DNA and family history.

        • #75874
          Cold Mountain Trail
          • Total Posts: 10,658


          If reparations means checking out everybody’s ancestry to that degree, I’m even more against that idea.  First, all the checkers would get a hefty percent of the reparations money.  Second, it would take a long time & probably judgments would be challenged in court & it would be a big fuck-ball & another thing for people to fight over.



    • #75566
      • Total Posts: 5,451

      One of the native American tribes near me got millions in a big settlement some years ago and put the money in a trust, rather than give each member a share. One of the elders explained why she voted for the trust. “We learned our lesson last time we got a settlement and gave each person a share. Our young men went out and bought Camaros, loaded up on booze, and died in car crashes or fights. All that money just led to death and destruction. We couldn’t go through that again.” Something to consider when looking at reparations.

    • #75567
      • Total Posts: 1,184

      This is a pandering tactic. They are all trying to lock Bernie out of the black vote. Once they do that, that will be the last you hear of this topic. None of these politicians are serious about this because they know it won’t work, it would be incredibly divisive, and it would never get them elected in the general election.

      It will be counter-productive. Look how Americans treat people on welfare. If you are on food stamps, you are viewed as some sort of failure and a leech. What are rich white people going to think about being forced by the government to pay reparation checks to black people? Is that going to solve racism in America?

    • #75570
      • Total Posts: 555

      slavery was bad, but all of the slaves, and all of their owners are dead.

      several thousand families lost husbands and children fighting against slavery. even more families came as immigrants after the end of slavery. making these families pay reparations is patently unfair.

      during reconstruction there was plenty of land available in the west, and the army no longer needed the quantities of mules used to haul cannon and supplies for the army. “40 acres and a mule” would have been easy compensations for the families involved. the current value of that 40 acres is a lot of money that our deficit hawks will never pay.

      the slaves were given one valuable reparation. their freedom. i don’t think that there will be anything more forthcoming.


      • #75834
        retired liberal
        • Total Posts: 3,437

        All that land belonged to to the original inhabitants, the Native Americans. It wasn’t really the “white mans” to just take, which is what happened.

        We are an arrogant species, believing our fantasy based "facts" are better than the other person's fake facts.
        If you are wrong, it will be because you are not cynical enough.
        Both major political parties are special interest groups enabling each other for power and money, at the expense of the people they no longer properly serve…
        Always wear a proper mask when out and about. The life you save could be both yours and mine.

    • #75656
      • Total Posts: 1,722

      I made my thoughts about this well known earlier.

      I consider it a ridiculous ploy, and most of those that said they are for it, is only for the “Study” of it.  Which meant, they’ll look in to it, but kick the can down the road, never doing anything about it.

    • #75832
      • Total Posts: 62

      I think that while the whole idea of reparations is flawed; the biggest and best thing that the US could do is to give force to the idea that all men are equal. This battle must be won in the heart first !!!


    • #75854
      Robot X
      • Total Posts: 484

      As others have noted this is just a cynical ploy sand bag Bernie in the Black community. This is how so-called liberals exploit race. Everyone of these MF’ers in the media and Democratic Party know reparations isn’t happening. It isn’t an honest question and they aren’t seeking an honest answer.

    • #75877
      • Total Posts: 436

      Sounds like a great way to get Trump re-elected.

    • #75892
      • Total Posts: 7,444

      I think it could be done at least partially by looking at the exclusion of black Americans from so many of the New Deal programs–which FDR was able to pass only by leaving their implementation to the states.  That would make it much easier to settle on particular figures.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #75926
      • Total Posts: 285

      This is just a whiffle ball they’ll try to throw in Bernie’s face at the debates.  As @jerry611 mentioned, I agree the idea will be quickly dropped once its perceived usefulness for the Vichy dems vs Bernie has run out.

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