18
   

Reparations To American Blacks... Yes/No?

 
 
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 06:03 pm
Feature article in this months Atlantic. I have not read it yet. My opinion going in is OH, HELL NO! on the grounds that blacks have already milked their victim story for more than it is worth, and also because I dont believe on Reparations on principle except to the individuals who were actually harmed. No living black was a slave, and so no blacks should get a payment for suffering slavery. This seems easy to decide and it is clear what the answer is.


What say you?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 18 • Views: 7,987 • Replies: 319

 
Benson-In-A-Box
 
  2  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 06:41 pm
@hawkeye10,
Go ahead and read the article. I think it's an excellent read even if you don't endorse reparations.
Butrflynet
 
  3  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 06:41 pm
@hawkeye10,
Here's a link to the article for those that want to read it before opining.

http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations/361631/

And here's a link to their blog about the subject.

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations-an-intellectual-autopsy/371125/
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 06:49 pm
@Benson-In-A-Box,
Benson-In-A-Box wrote:

Go ahead and read the article. I think it's an excellent read even if you don't endorse reparations.

I will, and seemingly unlike some others around here I can be persuaded to change my mind, particularly on subjects that I have not thought a lot about.....like this one.
0 Replies
 
Romeo Fabulini
 
  -4  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 07:58 pm
Reparations could take the form of a big chunk of land given to them and called 'The Black Nation' where blacks could go and live and run it themselves, for example somewhere like far northern Alaska.
Or even better, they're always going on about their "African roots", so the US Govt could pay a jungle nation like the Congo to take them all back..Smile
jcboy
 
  10  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 08:14 pm
@Romeo Fabulini,
Romeo Fabulini wrote:

Reparations could take the form of a big chunk of land given to them and called 'The Black Nation' where blacks could go and live and run it themselves, for example somewhere like far northern Alaska.
Or even better, they're always going on about their "African roots", so the US Govt could pay a jungle nation like the Congo to take them all back..Smile


Spoken like a true Christian, Moron! Rolling Eyes
0 Replies
 
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 08:17 pm
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
Reparations To American Blacks... Yes/No?
The idea is RIDICULOUS.
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 10:27 pm
@OmSigDAVID,
OmSigDAVID wrote:

Quote:
Reparations To American Blacks... Yes/No?
The idea is RIDICULOUS.


WHY? You used to be a lawyer for cripes sake, an opinion needs a reasoning.

I have not read it yet but I am still hung up my insistence that I am not responsible for the sins of my ancestors, that I should not suffer a debt on their account. I also believe that an estate gets settled on death, you cant come back 15o years latter and add to the estate and then pass it out to the descendants. We are supposed to violate all of our laws in order to shove money to descendants of those we think were victims a long time ago? What about all the blacks who were never slaves, why are they called victims? What about all the blacks who had a better life after they came to America whether they were slaves or not, how in the hell can they reasonably be called victims? They got to give their kids and grandkids life in America. Has anyone seen Africa in the last few hundred years? The entire continent is a rolling disaster, with lots of dirt floor huts and starvation, coming to America was the best thing that could have ever happened to them! I need to atone? BULLSHIT, I did not do anything wrong, and I dont even know that they suffered harm from anyone.

This whole idea seems like a unfounded guilt money transfer, I cant imagine that there is any sensible rational argument for the US government handing out payments to blacks.....but I will read the argument.
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Fri 23 May, 2014 11:34 pm
YIKES

So I skimmed it and decided it was not worth reading. Almost the entire thing is about slights and obstacles real and imagined that the blacks have faced over hundreds of years, with the subtext " the poor things, they need help" but he only makes three arguments for why I own them, for why I should direct my government to send them money:

1) black slaves tried to get reparations but did not.

My response is that their claim expired on their death

2) White guilt

Quote:
And so we must imagine a new country. Reparations-by which I mean the full acceptance of our collective biography, and its consequences- is the price we must pay to see ourselves squarely


pg 70

My answer: I did not do anything wrong, I feel just fine about myself. If you have a problem with what my ancestors did feel free to take up your grievance with them, but leave me out of it.


3) Currently living Blacks have had it tough

My answer: the nation addressed that with the civil rights movement and great society during the 60's, we paid anything we could have possible owed and much more. See answer #2

He goes on to talk about how reparations could work, but I dont give a **** because they should not happen at all

And that is it.


All in all a very weak argument. It is a very nice extensive telling of the black victim story, but frankly I am tired of hearing it, and it does not excuse the blacks for their failure to perform. The last thing I am interested in doing is throwing more money down the rat hole, and in the process further reinforcing their identity as victims. Havent we learned that this does not work? GO look at Haiti for cripes sake, sending money and saying " you poor thing" never changes anything.
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 12:04 am
@hawkeye10,
Argument #4 The Courts have always said no to attempts to get money from corporations, so an end run around them is need.

My Answer: If we need to fix the courts (and we do) then lets fix them, but we are a nation of laws. We do not fix the law (or courts) by ignoring the courts, by depowering the courts. Unless you can show that the courts are wrong you have no beef, not getting what you want is not a problem unless you can prove that the courts are wrong.

No attempt was made to prove such, natch. This was more of a drive - by argument, most likely because the author knows it is BS.

Argument # 5 The Germans would do it

My answer: if someone jumps of a bridge, does that mean you should? Another BS drive-by argument. The Germans are the same people who are working to kill their golden goose (industry) by scrapping their reliable electric supply and going to windmills....they not exactly people I am looking up to for good decision making.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 12:33 am
@hawkeye10,
Argument #6 Making a statement that we suck would lead to " spiritual renewal"

Quote:
What I am talking about is a national reckoning that would lead to spiritual renewal ..........................Reparations would mean a revolution of the American Consciousness, a reconciling of our self image as a great democratizer with the facts of our history


My answer: When I look out and see our nation fading as a superpower in record time, at unpaid for multi trillion dollar idiotic military excursions, at rising poverty and a decimated middle class , with huge numbers of citizens in prisons, and a deeply broken medical system and a deeply broken political system, with state abusing the citizens left and right to include in our " Justice" system I strangely dont find myself with any need for a public demonstration of " we suck" . I think we all get it already. IS this what they do at interventions, tell the subject they should go away because going to the 12 step program and telling everyone how much you suck is going to be good for your spirit??

Didn't think so.
0 Replies
 
OmSigDAVID
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 02:42 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye wrote:
Reparations To American Blacks... Yes/No?
OmSigDAVID wrote:
The idea is RIDICULOUS.
hawkeye10 wrote:
WHY? You used to be a lawyer for cripes sake, an opinion needs a reasoning.
I used to get $4OO.OO an hour in the 198Os.
U r not going to pay me to analyze that foolishness.





David
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 03:03 am
@OmSigDAVID,
Quote:
U r not going to pay me to analyze that foolishness.


OK, I will just imagine what you might argue

Quote:
Leaving that aside we come to the question of slavery. Specifically, the argument being made today is that the effects of the past slavery have led to the descendants of said slaves being disadvantaged in current society. Thus the descendants of the slavers should pay up to correct this disadvantage. Leave aside the inter-generational problems of this for a moment. Have a look instead at what the law itself says about such wrongs, such torts.

If I do something which causes damage to you then you can, quite rightly, take me to court and insist that I make up those damages to you. And the standard by which those damages must be calculated is that I must place you in the position which you would have been in without my damaging actions. The judgement is not a punishment for my bad actions (that would be a criminal case) but I should and must pay up compensation to cover, and only cover, the damage I have done. And this is where the problem is in slavery reparations cases.

It is undoubtedly true that those enslaved had harm done to them. But it’s not obvious that their descendants have been harmed by their ancestors’ enslavement. As a very simple example, the standard of living of the descendant of a slave in Barbados (GDP per capita, around $16,000) is very much higher than the standard of living of the descendant of a West African who was not enslaved (Benin, GDP per capita $800 or so). It can indeed be true that the Caribbean societies are unfair, that the positions, social status, incomes, of those slave descendants are lower than those of the non-slave descendants in those same societies (and if we want to be frank about it, yes, it is generally true that blacks are poorer than whites in most of these societies). But this is not the correct comparison to be making. To claim damage today from past slavery it has to be shown that the slavery itself has damaged those descendants. And that means comparing the descendants of the enslaved with those of the not-enslaved. Comparing living standards in the Caribbean with those in West Africa. That’s not a comparison that West Africa is going to win anytime this century so it’s very difficult indeed to see that there are any damages to be coughed up, for there’s been no harm done to this generation (as opposed to the obvious harm done to the generations that were directly enslaved).

Another way of putting this is that as the Caribbean descendants of slaves are richer than the West African descendants of non-slaves then how can giving the Caribbeans more money make up for damages caused by slavery?


http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2013/07/26/we-british-would-be-delighted-to-accept-reparations-for-the-slave-trade-and-slavery/

This is re the demand that Briton pay slave reparations to the Caribbean. The reasoning applied to the US is the same, slave descendents in theUS are better off then if there were in Africa, thus having no damages they have no claim.

Close?
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 03:13 am
Argument #7 Slave labor enriched the nation with gobs of money, which is owed

My answer: If any ex slaves are to be found we should take up the question of what they are owed. Furthermore what ever money the nation gained from slave labor was outspent multiple times in the civil war to end slavery, thus there has not been a slave labor financial benefit for about 150 years. Having already spent all of the profits from slavery to end slavery we have no ill gotten gains to distribute.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 06:29 am
@hawkeye10,
Almost the total human race have both slaves and slave owners in their family trees and whether you are talking about six human generations ago or forty generations ago I do not see how that change anything.

Next while slavery was surely hard on the slaves from Africa to the new world there seem little question that their current descends are far better off in the US then living in some current hellhole that a large percent of Africa sadly happen to be at the moment.

footnote to me in fact, the descends of the owners of slaves in the slave states that remained loyal to the union have a far better claim to be paid for the worth of the slaves taken away from their ancestors, then the ancestors of former slaves happen to have for reparations!!!!!!!!
0 Replies
 
Romeo Fabulini
 
  -2  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 10:17 am
Quote:
Romeo said: Reparations could take the form of a big chunk of land given to them and called 'The Black Nation' where blacks could go and live and run it themselves, for example somewhere like far northern Alaska.
Or even better, they're always going on about their "African roots", so the US Govt could pay a jungle nation like the Congo to take them all back..
jcboy said: Spoken like a true Christian, Moron!

You sound like a racist mate, don't you want the blacks to have their own country?
neologist
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 03:41 pm
@Romeo Fabulini,
Romeo Fabulini wrote:
You sound like a racist mate, don't you want the blacks to have their own country?
That would be Liberia. Hasn't worked as well as intended.
0 Replies
 
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 09:48 pm
@hawkeye10,
Hey Hawk.

Let's just start with #1. Freed black slaves attempted to get reparations, but couldn't.

I'll start by saying that I think reparations just won't work now. But, I want to ask you if you think former slaves had any clout or hopes of getting reparations immediately post-slavery. I'm sure you must have imagined their possibilities back in the mid-1860s and -70s.

I read interviews with former slaves http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/snhtml/snhome.html while at the University of Georgia as I studied to become a teacher, and so many of them suffered from PTSD. Not their words, but mine as a former social worker. The same mental disorder can be found in people who lived in such a frightening situation - like hostages. Their own internal desperate desire to survive forced a part of their brains to sympathize with those who beat them and tortured them. Stockholm Syndrome we call it.

One interviewed former slave said she was never mistreated, but fed, housed, and cared for by her master. She expressed appreciation. I was convinced as I read. As her daughter silently listened to her mother verbalize this for the government interviewer, she stood and carefully pulled the fabric of her mother's dress from her back, revealing thick scar tissue that webbed her back from the lashings her mother had suffered.

This is just one example of how an enslaved, tortured people can concoct their own personal story to survive horror.

That generation didn't have the wherewithal to stand up for what they deserved. A few were bold and strong of will - but they were up against a world of steel and social power. If you really consider it compassionately, you realize living former slaves didn't have a chance to get justice.

We have to begin with a knowledge that these people were forceably kidnapped from their homes, and used as animals for labor. I know Africans had slaves. I know Africans sold slaves to Europeans and Americans. But, eventually, in considering the question of reparations, we have to empathize with what life was like for African slaves here in America. Then, we have to ask ourselves what realistic position they found themselves in upon their first free day.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 10:00 pm
@Lash,
Quote:
But, I want to ask you if you think former slaves had any clout or hopes of getting reparations immediately post-slavery.

no, but it does not matter once they are dead. Again, if you have a problem with how my ancestors treated the former slaves after the war feel free to take up your concerns or whatever with them, I had nothing to do with it.

Quote:
We have to begin with a knowledge that these people were forceably kidnapped from their homes, and used as animals for labor
If anyone says otherwise you can count on me to give them the what for....let the truth ring out!

Quote:
we have to empathize with what life was like for African slaves here in America.
I am zen so this is a bit rhetorical, but I will certainly empathize and commiserate with them when we meet up in Heaven. I cant do anything about it right now.
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 May, 2014 10:25 pm
@hawkeye10,
I imagined that one of your arguments against reparations was the inability of living slaves to command reparations, so I thought this point weighed in your position. After reading the balance of your immediately preceding post, it seems not.
 

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