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Mr. Unite Us
Masai,

Don't forget the hundred years after slavery when most of were denied our constitutional and civil rights. We have war veterans from WWI, WWII and the Korean War that fought for this country yet were denied the basic right to vote when they returned. See 13th and 14th amendments.

How you spend your money, when or if you marry, or how educated you choose to be, does not change the facts that U.S Government sanctioned slavery, benefitted from slavery failed to uphold the Constitutional rights of Black
Americans for another 100 years after slavery. Therefore I support reparations for Black Americans born in this country prior to 1965. Those rights were denied soley on the basis of race.

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Mr. Unite Us
Should African Americans receive reparations.

Yes, No, or undecided.
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TimeBomb
Slavery was the cruelest human condition ever endured or perpetrated on man. No one doubts its brutality or how it has affected our people.

All that said, the reparations question is too complicated to answer with a simple yes or no. There are some instances where reparations are a good idea and there are others that amount to nothing more than a solicitation for a handout.

For example, those who wish to sue the United States for monetary damages is nothing more than soliciting for a handout. There are huge problems with this inquiry.

First, slavery was in full effect before the United States even existed, so why would the U.S. be named as a defendant? There were states that broke away from the union over the slavery issue and a small minority of whites were actually slaveowners. Unless it could be established that the government owned slaves, this arguement holds no water. Before you start listing presidents who owned slaves, be mindful that they were private citizens.

Suing individual states might provide a more reasonable option. The states took affirmative steps to preserve slavery and codified its existence. They enjoyed artificially inflated political influence on the federal level because they were able to count slaves as 3/5 a man when determining the number of politicians they could send to the House of Representatives. This development could be more easily quantified in dollars and cents. Further, Southern States engaged in commerce domestically and internationally. This could be quantified in dollars and cents as well.

The best target of all are companies that actually benefited from slave labor. We certainly know that slaveowners would contract their slaves to businesses and other organizations. Many of these companies are in existence and would not be able to survive a cash payout.

There is so much more to this issue, including the difficulty in establishing injured parties. I don't believe that every generation could claim that they are an injured party. But I'll finish this arguement when I have more time.
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Mr. Unite Us
I support reparations for 4 reasons

Reparations were paid to white indentured servants, Jews, Asians, and Hispanics. Looks like we are going to pay reparations to Iraqi prisoners.

There would be no United States of America had thousands of Black Patriots not fought free to this country from England. In spite of their heroism the government chose to sanction slavery, a crime of against humanity.

After Slavery the government refused to uphold our civil and constitutional rights for another hundred years after slavery, based solely on skin tone.

During the 1960's Black men were drafted and sent to Vietnman from states that would not their families to vote.

Military draft, and taxation without representation, for the Negro was sanctioned by this country, nearly 2 centuries after the Revolutionary war.

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Masai
First off, let me be a little facetious and say that the only thing that reparations would do for the black community would be to make Cadillac the most selling automobile in the country. If one of the things that we complain about is the lack of education that black people have, what would they do with the money? I think that this is a question that needs to be answered before reparations could be given.

Having said that, I don't believe in reparations. The whole debate is simply a distraction from the real issues in our community. Lack of education (not necessarily the opportunity for education). Lack of economic interest. Out of wedlock children. Reparations will not correct any of these things.

Plus, I agree with Time Bomb. How do we decide who will pay, and who will be paid. I personally don't know of any white people who owned slaves. Are they to pay for the sins of their "fathers"?

There is only one reason that I believe in reparations, and it is this. If African-Americans were to recieve them, there could be no justification for complaining anymore. The opportunity to level the playing field would be there. If they messed it up, it would be for them to blame, and no one would have to listen to the complaints anymore.
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Masai
Mr. Unite Us

I could give some merit to you saying that those born prior to 1965 should be those who recieve reparations. It is an interesting idea that I haven't heard before. At least then there would be some actual incidents of suffering on the part of those who would recieve them.

As for your other point, I do remember that African-Americans were denied there Constitutional rights, even after the ratification of the 13th and 14th amendments. All I'm saying is that it's not the world we live in today. We do need to take action against those incidences of true injustice, but why dwell on the past. We need to be concerned about what's going on in our communities today.
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Mr. Unite Us
Masai,

Be like windows XP or the average woman,
Multi-task.

Actually you don't have to do anything. Not all Japanese or all Jews, or all Native Americans, worked to get reparations for the their people. A small percentage did, those opposed, just kept their mouth shut. As far as I know none refused reparations.

Most African Americans did not attend the March on Washington with Dr. Martin Luther King. Most never Marched with King. Most did not lobby or march for the Voting Rights of 1965, The Civil Rights act of 1964, or the Brown for vs. Board of Education. Most Black Americans did not boycott segregated buses. A small percentage did. They changed the country and the world.


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TimeBomb
As far as reparations go, the fact that other ethnic groups received them has no place in this arguement. I tire of people who continue to advance this as a reason for reparations. Second, any civil rights violations suffered by blacks after slavery until 1965 was done so at the hands of states. Therefore, we have yet to successfully established the Federal Government as a credible defendant, tortfeasor, etc. Third, I am reading about injustices suffered after slavery. So we need to get our act together in defining what damages call for reparations. Is it slavery? Is it for the injusticed carried out in defiance of the 14th and 15th Amendments? What exactly is our claim?

As for slavery, I don't believe in reparations. I never met a slave nor have I met a slave owner to name as a victim or defendant. As for Civil Rights violations that were already codified, I am for this. Having said that, there still needs to be established real victims, real incidents of civil rights violations, and real victims.
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Mr. Unite Us
Children and grandchildren of Nazi Holocaust victims received reparations.

Great great grandchildren of Native Americans wronged by our government in the 1800's received reparations during the 1980's.

Should Reparations have been to paid to former slaves. Congress voted yes in 1865.

Should the children and grandchildren of slaves receive Reparations. Even though you never met a former slave many people alive today did. Some lived long enough to see Martin Luther King's March on Washington.

Denials of Civil Rights and Constitutional Rights by states were permitted by the Federal Government for another century after slavery. This is easily documented.
Nearly two hundred years after helping to free this country from England most Black Americans were still subject to "taxation without representation." Slavery and the denial of rights post slavery were based on one thing.
Race.

One example. Forcing Black Americans to go to inferior segregated one room school houses, greatly reduced the number of Black Americans that were able to attend college during the 1960's. This led to a disproportionate number of Black American drafted, and injured or killed in Vietnam during the early years of the war.

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TimeBomb
Perhaps a lesson in civics is in order. The Federal government has absolutely no say in the writing or approving of laws on the state level, except if the law in question is unconstitutional. Even then, there has to be a challenge of the law at the state level in order for appellate courts to take a look at it. It is not the function of the Federal government to keep a ledger of laws written and approved by every state. Therefore, to suggest that the Federal government approved of injustices carried out by the states is simply a fabrication used to support the arguement for Reparations proposed to be paid by the Federal governmemnt instead of the states.

To pull coattails, if we are to argue for anything, it is required that we completely understand the issue before taking a stance on that issue or acting on it.

Being forced to learn in segregated schools is a state issue and has no place in the arguement of Federally paid reparations.
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Mr. Unite Us
TB,

It depends on the injustice. For instance it's an injustice to deny American citizens the right to vote based on their skin color. That's what happened to millions of people during for another century AFTER slavery. The Federal Government failed to protect that right to vote.

Recently the State of Texas started enforcing laws against sodomy. Homosexuals argued that was against their 14th amendment rights. They said they were being denied Equal protection of under the law, and the supreme court agreed.

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TimeBomb
Unite,

You just proved my point in your second paragraph. The gay and lesbian community had to, first, bring an action to the Supreme Court in order for them (the Federal Government) to act. That is how it works!

So, again, one can't really argue that the Federal Government did not protect our rights if no action was brought forth from some injured party at the State level. That action is the only mechanism that can trigger activity from the Federal government.
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