Should there be reparations given to African-Americans for slavery?

Rongo

Ad Honorem
Dec 2011
5,683
Ohio
So I would have to pay you compensation? can you prove that my family had anything to do with it? are you sure your ancestor was not just a criminal?

Are you also going to factor in that your ancestors descendents now live in a country with a higher standard of living than mine?
Calm down, Kevin. I was merely pointing to that as an example of how absurd the whole idea is, for the reasons you enumerated as well as others. :)
 
Dec 2011
262
Las Vegas Nevada
So what would a person with heritage from both slaves and slave-owners do? Compensate themselves?

Every man is born innocent. Only institutions can "carry" guilt from one generation to another. And the US government has abolished slavery long time ago, so case closed.
Jim Crow? Furthermore, currently you have a legal system in the United States that is sending record number of African Americans to prison because of how the drug laws are written.
 
Dec 2011
262
Las Vegas Nevada
Can you provide any examples of all these people who you say are living off the fruits of slavery today?
Usually wealth is passed down from generation to generation; due to slavery and Jim Crow we have a huge wealth gap between African Americans and White Americans.
 

botully

Ad Honorem
Feb 2011
3,545
Amelia, Virginia, USA
If people are against reparations for ancestors of former slaves, I say all wealth should be compensated upon death and none of it can be passed down to family members. A lot of people benefited from slavery and are living off the fruits today.
That was when slavery was legal. Furthermore, how do you decide which percentage of the wealth derived from slavery. Slavery ended 150 years ago, so you seem to advocate punishing people for the sins of the father. Also, consider that nearly everyone has ancestors that arrived after slavery ended, so how do we assign percentages of blame?

This argument reminds me of the attempts to sue newspapers for running ads seeking runaway slaves or ads for slave auctions, or suing insurance companies for insuring slaves as property. Who pays and who receives? None of the payers did any wrong, and none of the payees were wronged. Seems silly to me.
 
Dec 2011
262
Las Vegas Nevada
That was when slavery was legal. Furthermore, how do you decide which percentage of the wealth derived from slavery. Slavery ended 150 years ago, so you seem to advocate punishing people for the sins of the father. Also, consider that nearly everyone has ancestors that arrived after slavery ended, so how do we assign percentages of blame?

This argument reminds me of the attempts to sue newspapers for running ads seeking runaway slaves or ads for slave auctions, or suing insurance companies for insuring slaves as property. Who pays and who receives? None of the payers did any wrong, and none of the payees were wronged. Seems silly to me.
It's not about you or your ancestors, it is about correcting something that should have been corrected a long time ago. African Americans are and were victims to a system that never really catered to their needs after slavery. You can preach pick yourself off your bootstrap all you want and this problem will never go away. A lot of African Americans are having a hard time just look around your country. “They cripple the bird's wing, and then condemn it for not flying as fast as they.”
― Malcolm X
 

Rongo

Ad Honorem
Dec 2011
5,683
Ohio
Usually wealth is passed down from generation to generation; due to slavery and Jim Crow we have a huge wealth gap between African Americans and White Americans.
Many white Southerners were left destitute by the Civil War. The wealth of the slaveholders was largely destroyed. There was nothing to pass down. The slaves found themselves penniless like the white Southerners who were wiped out by the war, and like immigrants, like my ancestors, who were arriving from Europe with nothing.

Jim Crow, of course, made the situation worse, just like NINA (No Irish Need Apply). But Jim Crow and NINA are over, and neither of them have to do with slavery. As far as wealth gap, there's a huge wealth gap in this country between the top 1% and the rest of us 99%. I agree that something needs to be done about that, but it has nothing to do with slavery, and reparations isn't the answer.
 
Last edited:

Kevinmeath

Ad Honoris
May 2011
14,038
Navan, Ireland
Calm down, Kevin. I was merely pointing to that as an example of how absurd the whole idea is, for the reasons you enumerated as well as others. :)
I don't need to calm down I was agreeing with you!

'I' have to pay 'you' compensation for something my ancestor may or may not have done!

and you live in a country with a higher standard than mine--- you should be thanking me!

What if I can prove that my ancestor was kidnapped by North African Corsairs in Baltimore (Co Cork) and sold into slavery can I make a claim?

(It would be a little embarrassing if it was later found that he converted to Islam and became a Corsair/Slaver himself, not an uncommom occurance)
 
May 2012
3,727
Nonbeing which is to say everywhere
I agree no money should be randomly given because of crimes 150 years ago. Technically slavery wasnt wrong until the 1800's should anyone whose ancestors were slaves in the Roman empire be paid?
 

Louise C

Ad Honorem
Jan 2011
7,239
Southeast England
No, that's silly. Reparation to the actual slaves might have made some sense, but not to their distant descendents.

Besides, not all African Americans were slaves, and how would you determine exactly who is descended from slaves and who isn't? Suppose someone was descended from an African American who was a slave owner? What then?