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(The Atlantic)   The case for reparations: "In America there is a strange and powerful belief that if you stab a black person 10 times, the bleeding stops and the healing begins the moment the assailant drops the knife"   (theatlantic.com) divider line 951
    More: Interesting, Massachusetts General Court, American racism, Valley Forge, humans, servitude, good behaviour, John Conyers, Manhattan Institute  
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11186 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 May 2014 at 10:58 PM (17 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-05-24 11:40:19 PM
White liberal guilt sucks. Stop it.
 
2014-05-24 11:40:34 PM

DrPainMD: Rincewind53: He also makes powerful points against those who say "But my family only came here in 1900!" Those people are perfectly happy to talk about how awesome George Washington was, how important the Declaration of Rights is, and are happy to take credit for  that aspect of being American. But they refuse to accept any responsibility for any negative aspect of the American experience. T-NC writes of this: "To celebrate freedom and democracy while forgetting America's origins in a slavery economy is patriotism à la carte."

If that's a "powerful point" then the article must be pretty weak. Why should someone (like me) who comes from post-slavery immigrants accept responsibility? I had nothing to do with it. And, should the descendants of black slave-owners pay restitution? What about those who had some ancestors who were slaves and some who were slave owners... should they pay themselves? Heck, let's just tax straight, white males (to cover gender and sexual orientation reparations while we're at it) and call it a day.


He's not even arguing for specific restitution.

He's arguing that the entire system is tainted and has to be fundamentally reformed.
 
2014-05-24 11:41:00 PM
"Reparations" doesn't mean throwing money at someone to shut them up.

It means  making right what had been wrong.

If people are going to keep interpreting the term so narrowly, maybe we should stop using it.
 
2014-05-24 11:41:03 PM

ox45tallboy: Babwa Wawa: That being said, I agree that we are not in a post-racial society, and that his modest proposals (which consist of simple consideration and study of the issue) are worthwhile.

I think that's what's raising so much controversy - in order to gauge what is needed to make something whole, you must start with acknowledging what damage has been done.

It would be a huuuuuuge thing for America to at least acknowledge the institutionalized racism in its public policy for its entire history.


I get the feeling that you may have read this article. :-).

It is exactly that - racism, institutionalized in public policy - which begs to be reckoned with.  And TFA's author doesn't even touch the war on drugs.  To do so would have watered down his argument, but in reality is the extenuation of that heritage over the last 30 years.

I would love to see what he might say about that topic.  Wait, I could see what he thinks about it in general, but hesitates to pass judgement without further study.
 
2014-05-24 11:41:37 PM

Yogimus: Give me the name of your ancestor that was a slave.


Jefferson.
 
2014-05-24 11:41:53 PM

Dusk-You-n-Me: Wrong last link, here is the Moyers interview. Link

Everyone in here who is talking about slavery, or "my family didn't own slaves" or money transfers is way off the point. This is a much broader look.


No. Not in any common sense way under the sun am I responsible for the actions of others. That's insane. Perhaps you are as well.
 
2014-05-24 11:42:19 PM

sprgrss: cchris_39: I'm all for reparations.

Anybody who's not happy here should renounce their citizenship and receive free plane ticket back to the county of their birth and $1,000 in cash.

So if I'm against reparations I should be put on a plane and flown back to precisely where I'm currently residing?  That's a waste of money.


no plane, boat ride, see how they like the third world shiat hole Africa is.

my Family never held slaves and several served in the army that freed them.
 
2014-05-24 11:42:25 PM

Dusk-You-n-Me: OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt.  I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.

It's not about me, it's about us as a country. We spent hundreds of years with our boot on the neck of black people. We still do today.


Yeah, racism is so bad that black men can't even get elected to important offices.
 
2014-05-24 11:43:15 PM

OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt. I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.


You, your parents, your grandparents, got better treatment and benefited from racism.

You as a person and your friends and family are where they are today in part because of institutional racism.

You did nothing wrong, but you were born into and grew up in and now live in a system that is skewed in your favor.
 
2014-05-24 11:43:31 PM

Babwa Wawa: DubtodaIll: did read it. It doesn't change the fact that any concessions given over the past come from those in power to give those concessions. I don't see how that help anyone achieve greatness or success. It is conceding that you are unable to make yourself happy on your own and that you need the help of those in power to accomplish that.

Well, I'm not going to argue that you didn't read it, then.  I will argue that you're choosing to ignore it.  At no point does he call for direct payments, or anything else in your strawman argument.


You are technically correct that "HE" doesn't call for it.  However, he quoted people like Conyers that are calling for it.  So I guess you are right.  It's like the other day when I ran into a theater and yelled, "That girl over there says the joint is on fire!"  How can I be prosecuted for yelling fire in a theater when I wasn't?
 
2014-05-24 11:43:33 PM

Babwa Wawa: Yeah, see that's how I know you didn't read the article.

Reparations don't need to take the form of direct payment to the victims.  Further, the author makes the point that slavery is not the only wrong committed against blacks in our society, and wronged blacks are very much still alive.

Read the article, give it a think, and come back with some thoughts, you know, about the farking article.

/white guy


Pardon me: So racism ends the moment we repay past racial transgressions through monetary or non-monetary assistance to the descendants of the victims, including but not limited to community building, government support or direct financial retroactive compensation?

Wait, sh*t. That was a stupidly long statement that failed to express anything I hadn't already. I assumed that people don't literally take the "writing a check" expression I used as the government literally writing out bank checks individually. But you shattered that one. My bad, yo.

Yes. I read the article. Yes, I still think "I gave you some shiat, we're cool now, right?" is a stupid policy. But now I also think you're intentionally contrary.

/also a white guy
//which is just as irrelevant to my post as it was to yours
 
2014-05-24 11:43:38 PM
My family owned slaves.  According to the family legend, my ancestor was a big man in Texas.  He "married" an Indian bride.  Then he dies.  She then runs the plantation of 150 terribly cruelly.
 
2014-05-24 11:43:55 PM

vernonFL: OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt. I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.

You, your parents, your grandparents, got better treatment and benefited from racism.

You as a person and your friends and family are where they are today in part because of institutional racism.

You did nothing wrong, but you were born into and grew up in and now live in a system that is skewed in your favor.


So obviously you must be punished.
 
2014-05-24 11:44:00 PM

EngineerAU: Man, this is the most "read the article" dense thread I've seen in a long long time. Fark, what happened to you?


An opinion on racial relations that doesn't entirely mesh with their narrow world views is what happened.
 
2014-05-24 11:44:18 PM
Or you could realize that some wounds never, ever heal and that it is okay to try and live your life to the fullest despite them.
 
2014-05-24 11:44:25 PM

phenn: No. Not in any common sense way under the sun am I responsible for the actions of others.


Your country is responsible. It was founded and nurtured on white supremacy. All the author is asking is that we recognize and study this fact.
 
2014-05-24 11:44:59 PM
That was indeed an interesting and well written article.  But since this is Fark and it involves race, so much this:

i.imgur.com
 
2014-05-24 11:45:31 PM
Once again, for the not-quite-literate among us:

THIS ARTICLE IS NOT ABOUT SLAVERY

it's not about things that happened generations ago to people long dead. It's about the injustices that have happened recently. To people alive today done by people alive today and the fact that those past injustices matter right now.
 
2014-05-24 11:45:34 PM

OgreMagi: Yeah, racism is so bad that black men can't even get elected to important offices.


Watch the video. He addresses this.
 
2014-05-24 11:46:03 PM

OgreMagi: I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.


Says the guy whose home sits on land that used to be occupied by First Nations tribes a few hundred years ago.

You may not have fought the war but you enjoy the spoils.
 
2014-05-24 11:46:34 PM

Dusk-You-n-Me: Everyone in here who is talking about slavery, or "my family didn't own slaves" or money transfers is way off the point. This is a much broader look.


It wouldn't even matter if my family did own slaves 200 years ago (they didn't), or acted maliciously towards black people at some later point (they didn't), or indirectly benefited from receiving better social treatment because they were white (they didn't - they were discriminated against for being Catholics).  I would still oppose reparations - they're deeply illiberal.

Also, don't be naive.  This is about money.  That's why Coates introduces the monetary figures about the impact of slavery.
 
2014-05-24 11:46:59 PM

js34603: So obviously you must be punished.


No, but it would be good to study history and acknowledge the wrongs that were done and be conscious of our history. I don't think anyone is saying that you or anyone else needs to write a check to Al Sharpton.
 
2014-05-24 11:47:15 PM
I think each and every person who was a slave should get reparations.

My white ancestor got off the boat from Belgium in 1863 and started fighting to free the slaves before he could even speak English. He suffered from PTSD and hung himself 20 years later.  Can I get some of that reparations loot?
 
2014-05-24 11:47:41 PM

Dusk-You-n-Me: phenn: No. Not in any common sense way under the sun am I responsible for the actions of others.

Your country is responsible. It was founded and nurtured on white supremacy. All the author is asking is that we recognize and study this fact.


My country? MY country?

Look. So far as I can reconcile, I was just born a little baby. I had nothing to do with greedy, dominant assholes who founded this or established that. They didn't do so under my direction, so my hands are relatively clean. K?

Sins of the father don't apply to me, to you or to anyone else alive or dead. You pay for your sins and I shall pay for mine. I see no usefulness or goodness that can come out of punishing me for something I didn't to to people I never knew for reasons I never understood.
 
2014-05-24 11:48:11 PM

vernonFL: OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt. I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.

You, your parents, your grandparents, got better treatment and benefited from racism.

You as a person and your friends and family are where they are today in part because of institutional racism.

You did nothing wrong, but you were born into and grew up in and now live in a system that is skewed in your favor.


This is where your argument loses points and validity.  You cannot look at someone's skin and make a determination on family history.
 
2014-05-24 11:48:25 PM

Dusk-You-n-Me: We spent hundreds of years with our boot on the neck of black people. We still do today.


Um, we have our boot on the neck of the black people? Really? REALLY?  Shut up.
 
2014-05-24 11:48:38 PM
I have Jewish ancestry.  Some of my ancestors were made slaves by some of your ancestors a long time ago in Egypt.  I demand that I be compensated for my losses.
 
2014-05-24 11:48:51 PM

Captain Dan: Also, don't be naive.  This is about money.  That's why Coates introduces the monetary figures about the impact of slavery


Slavery is a small part of it. The point is much broader than that.
 
2014-05-24 11:49:23 PM

OgreMagi: Dusk-You-n-Me: OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt.  I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.

It's not about me, it's about us as a country. We spent hundreds of years with our boot on the neck of black people. We still do today.

Yeah, racism is so bad that black men can't even get elected to important offices.


American born black men still can't...
 
2014-05-24 11:49:35 PM

phenn: Dusk-You-n-Me: phenn: No. Not in any common sense way under the sun am I responsible for the actions of others.

Your country is responsible. It was founded and nurtured on white supremacy. All the author is asking is that we recognize and study this fact.

My country? MY country?

Look. So far as I can reconcile, I was just born a little baby. I had nothing to do with greedy, dominant assholes who founded this or established that. They didn't do so under my direction, so my hands are relatively clean. K?

Sins of the father don't apply to me, to you or to anyone else alive or dead. You pay for your sins and I shall pay for mine. I see no usefulness or goodness that can come out of punishing me for something I didn't to to people I never knew for reasons I never understood.


You are living within the system they set up for you just by going about your business. You are being asked to acknowledge that, not to take responsibility for the sins of people who aren't alive any longer.

Is acknowledgement of facts really such a big deal to folks like you?
 
2014-05-24 11:49:49 PM

Babwa Wawa: I get the feeling that you may have read this article. :-).

It is exactly that - racism, institutionalized in public policy - which begs to be reckoned with.  And TFA's author doesn't even touch the war on drugs.  To do so would have watered down his argument, but in reality is the extenuation of that heritage over the last 30 years.

I would love to see what he might say about that topic.  Wait, I could see what he thinks about it in general, but hesitates to pass judgement without further study.


Yes, indeed I did read it last night.

I really want to see someone who read the article provide an argument as to why we cannot at least study the effects of institutionalized racism in the United States. What harm it did (and still does today), and what it would take to undo that harm.
 
2014-05-24 11:49:54 PM

IlGreven: itcamefromschenectady: Do Jews deserve money because of the Holocaust, if they didn't personally live through it?

...they got an entire country. What have blacks gotten other than centuries of oppression?


Well, technically, Liberia was supposed to be the black slaves version of modern Israel.
 
2014-05-24 11:50:07 PM
EVERYONE who was alive during slavery is long farkING dead. The suffering is over, get the fark over it! I do not farking care if your great, great grandfather had a friend who's father was a slave!! NO white person who is currently alive has anything to do with it! NO black person who is currently alive was EVER a farking slave! Sure, we have racism that needs to be eradicated, but that is entirely different than reparations for slavery!
 
2014-05-24 11:50:15 PM
The author makes her case in the first blurb under the title the rest of it is just well written icing on the cake.
 
2014-05-24 11:50:25 PM

phenn: Would a black member of Fark care to chime in here? I'd be appreciative of your take.


I would.

Just the first hundred comments should really inform everyone as to why black culture, in all respects, appears so aberrant.

Basically, it boils down to you never care about our needs as a supposedly fully enfranchised segment of the population, until we start burning buildings and looting in incoherent rage.

Remember the reaction to the Watts and other riots of the Sixties.
Remember the reaction to the South Central riots of 1992.
Remember the reaction to the looting post Katrina in New Orleans.

Now what was our level of care before then?
And in real terms... not very high.

So right now our collective mood is "You never cared about us, so why should we care what you think of us now. "

Brothers and Sisters are going to make money however they can because fark the system.

If that makes us look like a bunch of thugs and miscreants, so be it.

Why do you think we go through so much trouble to derive names that are non-standard? Because we just don't care about it anymore.
 
2014-05-24 11:50:39 PM

Benjimin_Dover: However, he quoted people like Conyers that are calling for it.


So when I quote someone, I agree with their proposals?  I've quoted some awful people in various papers...

Why not take a look at the article, and see about the actual author's proposal?  Maybe you could criticize the actual content?
 
2014-05-24 11:50:41 PM

Kyro: Pardon me: So racism ends the moment we repay past racial transgressions through monetary or non-monetary assistance to the descendants of the victims, including but not limited to community building, government support or direct financial retroactive compensation?


Where are you getting this "moment" idea from?  Nobody's saying there's a quick fix for racial injustice.

In fact, Coates is saying that it's a much slower process than most people will admit. You did read TFA, right?
 
2014-05-24 11:51:09 PM

7FARK7: Sure, we have racism that needs to be eradicated, but that is entirely different than reparations for slavery!


you almost got the point. Almost.

/might not have gone over your head had you RTFA.
 
2014-05-24 11:51:14 PM

sprgrss: This is where your argument loses points and validity. You cannot look at someone's skin and make a determination on family history.


You're right, I can't. I shouldn't generalize. I don't know everyone's situation.
 
2014-05-24 11:52:24 PM
www.indianvillagemall.com
/all y'all gots to go
 
2014-05-24 11:52:59 PM
I say start with 40 acres and a mule.

Seriously, though, reparations aren't a bad idea, especially in the form of property ownership (actually, I advocate a right to housing for all, free from rent, but that's another discussion).
 
2014-05-24 11:52:59 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: You are living within the system they set up for you just by going about your business. You are being asked to acknowledge that, not to take responsibility for the sins of people who aren't alive any longer.

Is acknowledgement of facts really such a big deal to folks like you?


Not in the least.

I acknowledge that immigrants to the US (some under duress) have been treated monstrously. In particular, Africans, sold into slavery by their own brethren and countrymen. Also Irish, Asian, Latino and Jewish (to varying degrees).

I absolutely acknowledge that.

We done here?
 
2014-05-24 11:53:33 PM
vernonFL:
You, your parents, your grandparents, got better treatment and benefited from racism.
... etc etc



img.fark.net
 
2014-05-24 11:53:48 PM

cabbyman: OgreMagi: Dusk-You-n-Me: OgreMagi: Fark your white guilt.  I did nothing wrong and I'll be damned if I am forced to pay penance for something I did not do.

It's not about me, it's about us as a country. We spent hundreds of years with our boot on the neck of black people. We still do today.

Yeah, racism is so bad that black men can't even get elected to important offices.

American born black men still can't...


What about Obama?

I keed, I keed
 
2014-05-24 11:54:34 PM

JavierLobo: My family owned slaves.  According to the family legend, my ancestor was a big man in Texas.  He "married" an Indian bride.  Then he dies.  She then runs the plantation of 150 terribly cruelly.


That's antebellum 1%.

Less than 10% of southerners owned slaves and even those owned at most a handful on small farms. The wealth distribution wasn't much different than it is today.

Is your family still in the rich planter class?
 
2014-05-24 11:55:06 PM
Women were systematically discriminated against throughout our nation's history, and still are today in varying ways.

Therefore, everyone who descends from women is entitled to reparations.

/Coates' logic
 
2014-05-24 11:55:12 PM
www.spd.org

Slavery ended years ago. I don't know anyone who was a slave.
 
2014-05-24 11:56:10 PM

phenn: I acknowledge that immigrants to the US (some under duress) have been treated monstrously. In particular, Africans, sold into slavery by their own brethren and countrymen. Also Irish, Asian, Latino and Jewish (to varying degrees).


That's very brave of you to take the stance that slavery is bad, while putting the blame squarely where it belongs: on other people of the same ethnicity as the people who were enslaved.
 
2014-05-24 11:56:11 PM

vernonFL: [www.spd.org image 580x403]

Slavery ended years ago. I don't know anyone who was a slave.


If you want to combat slavery maybe we can chip in for a one-way flight to Africa or Asia where it's still commonplace.
You might be killed since you're white, though.
 
2014-05-24 11:57:51 PM

ox45tallboy: I really want to see someone who read the article provide an argument as to why we cannot at least study the effects of institutionalized racism in the United States. What harm it did (and still does today), and what it would take to undo that harm.


Well, you and I will be waiting.   Hold my hand - we can do this.  Together.

Seriously, I had held off on reading this until this morning.  I really despise it when stuff is built up like this article is, and then I'm treated to something obvious, pedantic, or both.

It's not the suck-the-wind-out-of-your-lungs work it has been built up to be, but it's a pretty methodical and well-organized piece of work.  Its greatest impact is that it thoroughly dismantles the fantasy that a lot of people live in.
 
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