resulted from the passage of Senate Bills 2199 and 1737 in 2000 and was meant to address a number of issues related to the economic and political legacy of slavery, the roles of governments and businesses in this enterprise, and the question of reparations for the descendants of slaves. This panel discusses the issue of reparations.
“We must prepare African people and communities for the demands of the new millennium. Reparations are needed to repair the wrongs, injury, and damage done to us by the US federal and State overnments, their agents, and representatives. These have proved that their vision for African people in America is joblessness, more prisons (more killer kkkops), more black women and men in private prisons, AIDS and violence. “The US Eurocentric educational system has failed to prepare African children for liberation, nation-building, and self-determination. This educational system produces people who are anti-black; including many blacks who are self-alienated and anti-black. We want our resources, our inheritance, to do for ourselves without US Federal and State involvement.”
John Hope Franklin, Historian
“Most living Americans do have a connection with slavery. They have inherited the preferential advantage, if they are white, or the loathsome disadvantage, if they are black; and those positions are virtually as alive today as they were in the 19th century. The pattern of housing, the discrimination in employment, the resistance to equal opportunity in education, the racial profiling, the inequities in the administration of justice, the low expectation of blacks in the discharge of duties assigned to them, the widespread belief that blacks have physical prowess but little intellectual capacities and the widespread opposition to affirmative action, as if that had not been enjoyed by whites for three centuries, all indicate that the vestiges of slavery are still with us.”
Joseph Anderson, Member of the National Council of African American Men
“The arguments for reparations aren’t made on the basis of whether every white person directly gained from slavery. The arguments are made on the basis that slavery was institutionalized and protected by law in the United States. As the government is an entity that survives generations, its debts and obligations survive the lifespan of any particular individuals… Governments make restitution to victims as a group or class.”
Ernest Allen, Jr. and Robert Chrisman
“Most blacks suffered and continue to suffer the economic consequences of slavery and its aftermath. As of 1998, median white family income in the U.S. was $49,023; median black family income was $29,404, just 60% of white income.”
Oscar Brown Jr., Forty Acres and a Mule
One hundred years of debt at ten percent
‘Per year, per forty acres and per mule
Now add that up…
Robin D.G. Kelley, Freedom Dreams
“If we think of reparations as part of a broad strategy to radically transform society — redistributing wealth, creating a democratic and caring public culture, exposing the ways capitalism and slavery produced massive inequality — then the ongoing struggle for reparations holds enormous promise for revitalizing movements for social justice.”
Gil Scott Heron
Who’ll pay reparations on my soul?
Huey Newton, The Black Panther Party Ten-Point Program
“We want an end to the robbery by the white man of our Black Community. We believe that this racist government has robbed us and now we are demanding the overdue debt of forty acres and two mules. Forty acres and two mules was promised 100 years ago as restitution for slave labor and mass murder of black people. We will accept the payment in currency which will be distributed to our many communities. The Germans are now aiding the Jews in Israel for the genocide of the Jewish people. The Germans murdered six million Jews. The American racist has taken part in the slaughter of over fifty million black people; therefore, we feel that this is a modest demand that we make.”
“If you are the son of a man who had a wealthy estate and you inherit your father’s estate, you have to pay off the debts that your father incurred before he died. The only reason that the present generation of white Americans are in a position of economic strength…is because their fathers worked our fathers for over 400 years with no pay…We were sold from plantation to plantation like you sell a horse, or a cow, or a chicken, or a bushel of wheat…All that money…is what gives the present generation of American whites the ability to walk around the earth with their chest out…like they have some kind of economic ingenuity.
“Your father isn’t here to pay. My father isn’t here to collect. But I’m here to collect and you’re here to pay.”
“Demanding reparations is not just about compensation for slavery and segregation. It is, more important, an educational campaign to highlight the contemporary reality of racial deficits of all kinds, the unequal conditions that impact blacks regardless of class. Structural racism’s barriers include equity inequity, the absence of black capital formation that is a direct consequence of America’s history. One third of all black households actually have negative net wealth. In 1998 the typical black family’s net wealth was $16,400, less than one fifth that of white families. Black families are denied home loans at twice the rate of whites.
Blacks remain the last hired and first fired during recessions. During the 1990-91 recession, African-Americans suffered disproportionately. At Coca-Cola, 42 percent of employees who lost their jobs were black. At Sears, 54 percent were black. Blacks have significantly shorter life expectancies, in part due to racism in the health establishment. Blacks are statistically less likely than whites to be referred for kidney transplants or early-stage cancer surgery.
In criminal justice, African-Americans constitute only one seventh of all drug users. Yet we account for 35 percent of all drug arrests, 55 percent of drug convictions and 75 percent of prison admissions for drug offenses.
White Americans today aren’t guilty of carrying out slavery and segregation. But whites have a moral and political responsibility to acknowledge the continuing burden of history’s structural racism.”
RBGz Voices of Slavery Classroom: In The Spirit of Sankofa
- N’COBRA: National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America
- Slavery, Racist Violence, American Apartheid: The Case for Black Reparations by Sundiata Keita Cha-Jua
- Radio Reports on Reparations from National Public Radio (NPR)
- No Masses, No Movement by Adamma Ince
- Forty Acres and a Mule: Video clips of leading scholars discussing the case for reparations
- An Idea Whose Time Has Come by Manning Marable
- The Case for Reparations by Amiri Bakara
- The Master’s Tools by Rhonda V. Magee
- The “Black Manifesto” and the Tactic of Objectification by Jerry K. Frye
- The Economic Case for Reparations to Black America by Robert S. Browne
- The Slavery Reparation Center of the National Leadership Network of Black Conservatives
- Ernest Allen Jr. and Robert Chrisman, “Ten reasons: A response to David Horowitz,” Black Scholar 31, no. 2 (Summer 2001).
- Robert L. Allen, “Past Due: The African American Quest for Reparations,” Black Scholar 28, no. 2 (1998): 2-17.
- Boris Bitker, The Case for Black Reparations (1973).
- Roy L. Brooks, ed. When Sorry Isn’t Enough: the Controversy over Apologies and Reparations for Human Injustice. (1999).
- William Darity, Jr. “Forty Acres and a Mule: Placing a Price Tag on Oppression,” in Richard F. America, ed., The Wealth of Races: The Present Value of Benefits from Past Injustices. (1990).
- Joe R. Feagin, Racist America (2000)
- Robin D.G. Kelley. Freedom Dreams, Chapter 4. (2002).
- Robert S. Lecky and H. Elliott Wright, eds. Black Manifesto: Religion, Racism, and Reparations. (1969).
- Clarence J. Munford, Race and Reparations: A Black Perspective for the 21st Century. Trenton: Africa World Press, 1996.
- Randall Robinson. The Debt: What America Owes to Blacks. (2001).
- Raymond Winbush, ed., Should America Pay?: Slavery and the Raging Debate on Reparations (2003).
- Marable, Manning. “An Idea Whose Time Has Come”. Newsweek 27 Aug. 2001. Page 22 paragraph 7 and 11.
Work Camps 1
Work Camps 2