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I haven't followed the current progress of reparations but I would like to add what I think should be done if reparations were actually enacted.

First of all, most of us black people wouldn't know what to do with cash money, even if by some stretch of the imagination, the government had the cold hard cash to give us. What should be done is there should be funding set aside for blacks to recieve financial aid to attend the college or university of their choice, provided they maintain the necessary GPA to remain at that college or university.

Secondly, I think that more funding should be appropriated into improving the in and around the city limits of predominately black cities in America--more affordable housing, better public transportation systems, and signing bonuses to attract new teachers in inner city school systems.

These are but a few ideas that, not only are already in progress in some cities, but also should be taken into serious consideration in other areas.
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I find it the height of condescension (was that an oxymoron?) when white people "suggest" what black people should do w/ reparations. The defendant makes no demands on what the plaintiff should do with the compensation he has won; in most legal systems (the one used in the US included). The plaintiff can burn the money if he so desired..

But as far as what reparations should include??
Here are my demands.

1. 150 yrs of income tax exempt status. Black people should be excused from any/all forms of federal, state, county, city income tax.

2. Universal Amnesty. A one time "get out of jail free card" for all black people currently incarcerated by any agency (federal, state, county and/or city). This includes the forgiveness of all probationary status as well and the reinstatement of voting rights currently withheld from convicted felons.

3. Debt Forgiveness. The payment of all debts for every item currently on the credit report for anyone of African-American decent.
Kweli4Real.

I know the get out of jail free pass, is a tuff pill to swallow. However, you have to take into consideration the generations of miss-treatment of black people (that goes on to this very day) in the American criminal-Criminal JUST-US system.

For years black people had no legal recourse, there was a period in this country where black people had "no laws/rights that a white person was bond to respect".

So this one time get out of jail free card (for every black person) balances that scale.

It is not with out precedence either, review the histories of the colony of Georgia & the country of Australia, and see how these places were originally populated by British criminals.
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HeruStar, my concepts go hand in hand w/ my ideas about repatriation (going back to Africa).

The people who recieve the clemency should be given the choice to either serve the remainder of their sentence or go to an African country. I have allready laid out my ideas about repatriation, namely Namibia being the best place for us to potentially resettle.
I will have to do some re-fresher research on Tanzania, but I took a look at every African country. I have a tentative set of criteria and they are as follows namely, 1. The country we should chose should have a coast (Atlantic and/or Indian) dose not matter. 2. Large country (in area) w/ a relatively small population.

Namibia fits this bill. Namibia borders the Atlantic ocean to it's west, it is a little over 2 times the size of California (in total area) & has a population of appx. 2 million people (the city of Los Angeles has over 3 million).

It is a very dry country (so we would need to develop ways to get water).
Tanzania does border the Indian ocean to its east, and is 3 times the size of California, however it has a total population of over 32 million people
Much too dense there.

I know we're straying off topic, but I like this idea. So tell me, do we take control of the country, or do we coexist as a seperate entity. The reason I ask is because, I don't trust much of the leadership over there, and some of their concepts of economics are all screwed up. If we placed our people in their hands, they would suck the reparation funding dry.
SLAVERY REPARATIONS:
A MISGUIDED MOVEMENT


SLAVERY REPARATIONS:
A MISGUIDED MOVEMENT

Professor Peter H. Schuck
Yale Law School
JURIST Guest Columnist
Let us stipulate -- because it is manifestly true -- that American slavery was a horrendous crime and a moral abomination. Let us further stipulate that this crime had countless victims and that their descendants still experience adverse effects today, seven generations later. Finally, stipulate that our society subscribes to an ideal of corrective justice that recognizes a legal duty compelling wrongdoers to remedy wrongfully-caused losses and to surrender wrongfully-obtained gains. Does this require the payment of reparations by the federal government to. . .somebody? Does it justify such reparations?
My answer to both questions is no -- and not just because of uncertainty about who the "somebody" would be, although as we shall see this poses a serious practical problem. My objections to reparations fall into three general categories: instrumentalist, consequentialist, and horizontal equity.
Instrumentalist objections
By instrumentalist objections, I mean problems of a practical or administrative nature that would be created by any serious effort to move from the status quo to an effective and just reparations regime. By "serious effort," I mean one that takes full account of the practical requirements of implementation. I take up the meaning of "effective and just reparations regime" in the discussion of the consequentialist and horizontal equity objections.
It may seem churlish to begin with the practical or technical obstacles to engineering a solution. These problems will surely strike some reparations advocates as too small-bore and nit-picking to mention in the same breath with the moral project of reparations. But mention them we must, especially because of the project's moral purpose. As the saying goes, if one wills an end, then one also wills the necessary means to that end. Ought implies can. Means, moreover, are not merely instrumental to desired ends; often, they also have normative dimensions of their own that must be considered. Finally, when policies that are attractive in principle fail at the level of actual implementation, the policies themselves are discredited.
Here are just a few of the numerous implementation problems that a reparations law would need to solve.
"¢ First, how would it define the beneficiary class? Would it include all blacks in the U.S. or only those descended from slaves? If the former, what about immigrant blacks and how would "black" be defined in an increasingly multi-racial society? If the latter, what about descendants of free blacks?
"¢ Second, how would the beneficiaries prove their entitlement? Absent a clear definition of black (who would judge?) or reliable documentary evidence of descent (surely lacking in most cases), what presumptions would be accepted and how could they be rebutted?
"¢ Third, would beneficiaries have to show that American slavery caused their current condition? What if they would otherwise have been killed or enslaved by their African captors, or sold to non-American masters?
"¢ Fourth, should all taxpayers bear the cost of reparations, or only those descended from slaveowners or from those who lived in the slave states? The list of such technocratic questions - none of them fanciful - could be extended endlessly.
Consequentialist objections
The actual effects of a reparations program, of course, will depend partly on the answers to these and other instrumental questions and partly on developments about which we can only speculate. To inform this speculation, however, we can draw on some historical experience with reparations or quasi-reparations programs to suggest what we might expect of this one, even conceding as I readily do that each program is different in any number of ways. Consider four such programs: post-war reparations; the September 11 compensation fund; affirmative action; and the payments to Japanese internees. (Again, space permit only the briefest characterizations). The treaties ending World War I required the Central Powers, especially Germany, to pay war reparations to the victorious Allies. In fact, the payments were grudging, delayed, incomplete, and raised new conflicts. For this reason, the payments brought little satisfaction to the recipients and the bitterness it engendered among Germans was skillfully exploited by Hitler and, according to many historians, contributed to his political support. The post-World War II reparations that Germany paid to Israel, although criticized by many as insulting and inadequate "blood money," were far more successful and helped to launch the new state.
The September 11 compensation fund is still in its early stages, but certain patterns are already evident. Although Congress assumed that this catastrophe was as sui generis as any event could be, the precedent it set has already produced an expansion of the program to include the victims of other terrorist-related disasters such as Oklahoma City and the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia. And while the relatively small share of the eligible families who have received their awards so far surely value them, many recipients complain that the compensation's failure to remedy their loss adequately has inflicted an additional dignitary harm and reopened painful wounds. Far from assuaging their suffering, it seems, monetization sometimes aggravates it -- no matter what compensation scheme is chosen.
Even though affirmative action does not entail direct payments for past discrimination, most supporters view it as a compensatory program; the greater economic opportunities it affords its beneficiaries do constitute a kind of reparations and are intended as such. After more than 30 years of affirmative action -- and my work on a comprehensive article on this subject in 20 Yale Law & Policy Review 1 (2002) -- several effects seem clear. (Many other effects, both good and bad, are more debatable).
First, the number of individuals who are now eligible for preferences dwarfs the group that they originally and most compellingly targeted -- the descendants of slaves and the victims of Jim Crow. Today, the eligible groups include other categories (women, Hispanics, Asians, and sometimes the disabled) as well as millions of immigrants of color whose ancestors did not experience slavery here.
Second, law's inherently technocratic modalities have tended to (literally) de-moralize affirmative action programs. By implementing preferences through a system of contestable definitions, measurements, sanctions, regulations, and litigation, the law has politicized, bureaucratized, and trivialized what was once a moral project. As I discuss below, this moral imperative can be served better in other ways.
Third, affirmative action's unpopularity, even among many members of the beneficiary groups, has created new barriers to inter-racial reconciliation and heightened the salience and divisiveness of race -- precisely the opposite of the advocates' originally goals.
The most attractive model for black reparations is the program for the Japanese interned during World War II. The program is very recent, of course, and I know of no analysis of its effects but let us assume that they have been altogether positive - that the recipients are satisfied by the federal government's contrition and compensation, while the program is causing other Americans to reflect on the lessons of that dark chapter of our history. Perhaps this putative success augurs well for a black reparations program but I doubt it, for reasons already discussed. The surviving Japanese internees are a relatively small, easily identifiable group of victims who had been harmed in specific ways by a discrete event limited in time and space. None of the instrumentalist objections mentioned above applies to this group; for example, the beneficiaries are the surviving victims themselves, not innumerable, far-flung, anonymous descendants up to seven generations removed from us.
The German compensation schemes for Holocaust victims and slave laborers are not a close model for black reparations either, for many of the same reasons that distinguish the Japanese internment program. These German schemes, moreover, resulted from the settlement of strong legal claims based on unjust enrichment of specific banks, insurers, employers, and other companies that inflicted calculable losses on specific individuals and families.
Horizontal equity
Justice and fairness demand that similar cases be treated alike. We all know that every case is different in some respect from every other case, that the criteria of factual relevance and similarity are neither self-evident nor self-defining, and that classifying cases into categories for purposes of comparison is often a matter of judgment. We also know that the victims of grave injustice -- slavery, the Holocaust, other genocides, enforced subordination -- often regard their suffering as distinctive, if not unique; they tend to resist the notion that the victims of other grave injustices suffered more or in ways more deserving of remedy. To cite an extreme and maudlin but perhaps revealing example, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen, in his book Hitler's Willing Executioners, argues that even slaves were treated as less "socially dead" (in Orlando Patterson's phrase) than Jews were in Germany during the Nazi period.
The competition for greatest victimhood is almost inevitable both for political reasons and for a legal one; standard equal protection doctrine invites such comparisons in order to determine the appropriate standard of review. This competition is not an edifying sight -- and not just because we lack a common metric for measuring and comparing injustices of this kind. It often descends into an ugly struggle for public resources, recognition, recrimination, and moral status among people who have already suffered enough and who should be the last to view injustice as a zero-sum game. Is slavery the greatest injustice in American history? Probably so, but I would not expect Native-Americans whose ancestors were systematically exterminated by the U.S. Army to readily cede the point. Were the indentured servants of the colonial period or the Chinese coolies of the nineteenth century more harshly treated or less deserving of reparations than the Japanese internees? What about the internees' Japanese ancestors who were not permitted to own farmland, marry whites, or enter professions? What about the Irish immigrants who were forced by hateful discrimination to live in conditions arguably as degraded as slave cabins? Should we view their whiteness as an emblem of privilege sufficient to redeem their long suffering without further recompense?
I do not know the answers to these questions -- or even how to think about answering them. There is much to be said (as equal protection doctrine allows) for taking one step at a time toward a more just society. My point, then, is not that giving reparations to the descendants of black slaves would require, legally or otherwise, that they be given to the descendants of liquidated Native-Americans or near-enslaved coolies, much less that the former should not be first in line. Rather, it is that the politics and psychology of the competition for victimhood will make it difficult to stop there, and that the very effort to justify this stopping point will arouse new bitterness and magnify existing feelings of injustice.
Conclusion
The movement for black reparations, however well-intended, is misguided. Indeed, it is perverse in its propensity to discredit the very ideal of corrective justice that it invokes, to aggravate bitterness rather than assuage it, and to make reconciliation more difficult. Our obligation now is to engage with and learn from the past, and then to move forward by turning the page. As we turn it, we must not forget that we are leaving behind an endless catalog of crimes, tears, and scars of the lash, of prejudice, and of poverty. We must leave this human misery and injustice behind, but not out of mind or conscience. We already have a long agenda to challenge our moral faculties and remedial imaginations as we assess our responsibilities to one another both now and in the future.

Peter H. Schuck is the Simeon E. Baldwin Professor of Law at Yale, and author of the forthcoming Diversity in America: Keeping Government at a Safe Distance (Harvard/Belknap, April 2003) and The Limits of Law: Essays on Democratic Governance (Westview, 2000).

December 9, 2002
****************
Dream on, Reparations for slavery will not happen.

......Besides there are too many other incidents to seek redress than to waste finite valuable resources seeking reparations for slavery that will not happen!

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton
quote:
Originally posted by HeruStar:
Much too dense there.

I know we're straying off topic, but I like this idea. So tell me, do we take control of the country, or do we coexist as a seperate entity. The reason I ask is because, I don't trust much of the leadership over there, and some of their concepts of economics are all screwed up. If we placed our people in their hands, they would suck the reparation funding dry.


**That is a good question.....there will definitely need to be some accountability and control issues addressed.....
quote:
Let us stipulate -- because it is manifestly true -- that American slavery was a horrendous crime and a moral abomination. Let us further stipulate that this crime had countless victims and that their descendants still experience adverse effects today, seven generations later. Finally, stipulate that our society subscribes to an ideal of corrective justice that recognizes a legal duty compelling wrongdoers to remedy wrongfully-caused losses and to surrender wrongfully-obtained gains


Oh, I never saw the BUT coming on this one

quote:
Does this require the payment of reparations by the federal government to. . .somebody? Does it justify such reparations?


Complex Cause
You've committed this Causal Fallacy already. MBM and others have already pointed out to you the many other arguments for reperation, it matters not that you have a Yale professor committing two logical errors, with the other one being a Straw Man argument.

quote:
By instrumentalist objections, I mean problems of a practical or administrative nature that would be created by any serious effort to move from the status quo to an effective and just reparations regime. By "serious effort," I mean one that takes full account of the practical requirements of implementation. I take up the meaning of "effective and just reparations regime" in the discussion of the consequentialist and horizontal equity objections


So it's impractical to think that the world's superpower can implement something as easy as reparations. By "serious" effort he meant that Blacks are hardly worth the time. I'm pretty sure these "obstacles" he speaks of are no more harder to overcome than the obstacles that the founding fathers faced writing the Constitution. Or maybe their were just intellectually superior. For they did write "All men are created equal", something that people like this professor still can't grasp.

quote:
Ought implies can. Means, moreover, are not merely instrumental to desired ends; often, they also have normative dimensions of their own that must be considered. Finally, when policies that are attractive in principle fail at the level of actual implementation, the policies themselves are discredited.
Here are just a few of the numerous implementation problems that a reparations law would need to solve.


I guess that settles it, the Yale professor feels like we can't, so we can't. Give me a break.

quote:
First, how would it define the beneficiary class? Would it include all blacks in the U.S. or only those descended from slaves? If the former, what about immigrant blacks and how would "black" be defined in an increasingly multi-racial society? If the latter, what about descendants of free blacks?


That's not a decision that a white should stress about. WE decide the Beneficiary. This supremist view is sickening. Lie to, rob, steal, kill, and rape our people, finally realize their error, and tell us THEY can't repay us because THEY can't figure out whom THEY want to repay. THEY weren't the one's suffering those injustices, so THEY DON'T decide. WE DECIDE.

quote:
Second, how would the beneficiaries prove their entitlement? Absent a clear definition of black (who would judge?) or reliable documentary evidence of descent (surely lacking in most cases), what presumptions would be accepted and how could they be rebutted?


Swindle us. Then tell us to PROVE we got swindled. That's hardly characteristic of a nation that prides itself on integrity. You know what you did, own up to it, and stop trying to weasel out of it.

quote:
Third, would beneficiaries have to show that American slavery caused their current condition? What if they would otherwise have been killed or enslaved by their African captors, or sold to non-American masters


So we should be thanking our lucky stars that YOU were our captors!
Dear God forgive me for I almost lost my religion on this one. THIS IS SOME RACIST BULLCRAP!!!!!!! To even imply that our condition was made better by being forced over here on ships is UTTERLY RIDICULOUS, even coming from a so-called professor.

quote:
Fourth, should all taxpayers bear the cost of reparations, or only those descended from slaveowners or from those who lived in the slave states? The list of such technocratic questions - none of them fanciful - could be extended endlessly.


Should all taxpayers bear the cost of this war? Answer that one. Every black man that lived during slavery is directly or indirectly affected. Just because few escaped to various states and Canada, doesn't exclude them and their families. For had they not escaped then then slippery slope or butterfly affect of things that would've or could've happened will definitely point to a situation that makes blacks even worse off.

quote:
Far from assuaging their suffering, it seems, monetization sometimes aggravates it -- no matter what compensation scheme is chosen.


He can save this tired speculation for someone with a small-minded selfish mentality. Why don't we speculate how those reparations revitalized, rather than pointing out the insignificant number of complaints, which mind you are made mostly buy the government. Ofcourse their not happy about recompensating people for their wrongs. By the way that appears like another causal fallacy, called wrong direction. Reparations is not the cause of aggravation, it's the result.

quote:
Even though affirmative action does not entail direct payments for past discrimination, most supporters view it as a compensatory program; the greater economic opportunities it affords its beneficiaries do constitute a kind of reparations and are intended as such. After more than 30 years of affirmative action -- and my work on a comprehensive article on this subject in 20 Yale Law & Policy Review 1 (2002) -- several effects seem clear. (Many other effects, both good and bad, are more debatable).
First, the number of individuals who are now eligible for preferences dwarfs the group that they originally and most compellingly targeted -- the descendants of slaves and the victims of Jim Crow. Today, the eligible groups include other categories (women, Hispanics, Asians, and sometimes the disabled) as well as millions of immigrants of color whose ancestors did not experience slavery here


So we shouldn't have reparations because they wrote ambiguous laws, so that they can keep their white hands in the pot.

quote:
Second, law's inherently technocratic modalities have tended to (literally) de-moralize affirmative action programs. By implementing preferences through a system of contestable definitions, measurements, sanctions, regulations, and litigation, the law has politicized, bureaucratized, and trivialized what was once a moral project. As I discuss below, this moral imperative can be served better in other ways


I don't subscribe to his philosophy on laws or morals. Neither should anyone else considering what he's displayed thusfar. Reparations is already a trivial issue to the white man, so I guess what's left of this statement is that reparations will be bureaucratized and politicized. NO DUH.

quote:
Third, affirmative action's unpopularity, even among many members of the beneficiary groups, has created new barriers to inter-racial reconciliation and heightened the salience and divisiveness of race -- precisely the opposite of the advocates' originally goals


Since when was reparations popular. Last time I check WE were the minority. Anything that WE seek can hardly be considered popular in this nation. Popularity is irrelevant.


quote:
The surviving Japanese internees are a relatively small, easily identifiable group of victims who had been harmed in specific ways by a discrete event limited in time and space. None of the instrumentalist objections mentioned above applies to this group; for example, the beneficiaries are the surviving victims themselves, not innumerable, far-flung, anonymous descendants up to seven generations removed from us.


And this is an argument against paying what you owe because? Just because you pay the small bills first doesn't mean that those larger bills will just disappear. Tell you what, go ahead and file bankruptcy for the whole nation, since you know that they can't pay.

quote:
Executioners, argues that even slaves were treated as less "socially dead" (in Orlando Patterson's phrase) than Jews were in Germany during the Nazi period.


Why is this relevant?

quote:
Is slavery the greatest injustice in American history?


Why is this relevant?

quote:
I do not know the answers to these questions -- or even how to think about answering them


Why ask then? To prove a point? To prove that your view of morality is hardly relevant or consistent with the economic, social, and political arguments in favor of reparations.

quote:
The movement for black reparations, however well-intended, is misguided. Indeed, it is perverse in its propensity to discredit the very ideal of corrective justice that it invokes, to aggravate bitterness rather than assuage it, and to make reconciliation more difficult.


Your logic is misguided, better yet misdirected. I already pointed out, and IMHO, it's not about reconciliation. It's about Just and Rightful compensation. Do we owe you reconciliation?

quote:
Our obligation now is to engage with and learn from the past, and then to move forward by turning the page. As we turn it, we must not forget that we are leaving behind an endless catalog of crimes, tears, and scars of the lash, of prejudice, and of poverty


Yeah you can turn the page right after you give me my check.

quote:
We already have a long agenda to challenge our moral faculties and remedial imaginations as we assess our responsibilities to one another both now and in the future.


And the truth comes out. Whites don't want reparations on THEIR AGENDA. We'll how about you assess how irresponsibly you've addressed your debt to the very backbone of this nation, past, present, and future. You'll forever progress off the sweat of our backs.
back to the topic of ideal reparations--Firstly, I propose instead that the United States government mandate a series of grants that will allow all eligible blacks to go to a college, university or trade school of their choice. I think it would only be fair that only eligible blacks qualify for this educational funding since whites already benefit from pell grants, scholarships, and aid from the UNCF by going to HBCU's. I, for one would be very happy to have the government pay for my attainment of a PhD in Industrial Psychology. The one drop of black blood theory could also apply if anyone that isn't of obvious African descent would be willing to undergo blood testing to prove their ethnicity. With implementation of these grants blacks could benefit greatly from educational empowerment, thereby becoming more productive, responsible citizens that can contribute to this nation's economy.

Secondly, I propose that the government should mandate a series of grants to build attractive contemporary housing that will bring the middle to upper middle class blacks back into cities that are suffering from a declining population. The terms of the grants could also specify that black contractors be given first priority when bidding for contracts to build these inner city homesteads. In conjunction with these grants city officials should be allowed to assist in cultivating existing black owned business and encourage banking institutions to fund potential black entrepreneurs into opening small businesses in the city. I think it's only fair that we receive this type of reparations considering that blacks contribute more that 700 billion dollars a year to this country as consumers. Of course I left a lot of avenues open for discussion by anyone that would be interested in expounding on what I have already talked about in this post or offer their two cents on a relative topic. Feel free to participate.
While you're good at percentages, tell me what percentage supported Japanese reparations, Native american reparations or any other type?

Your weak argument is getting weaker every time you use conflicting arguments. What percentage of the taxpayers voted for, stood behind, or supported those aforementioned reparations?

I intentionally asked twice in two separate ways because I want two separate answers, since you have conflicting attacks on reparations.

First you support saying that the number of blacks is too much to support reparations, then you say that there is not a significant percentage to support reparations claims. Which one? Pick please? I'm not going to allow you to do both. If you do, I will force you to see the conflict in your argument.

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