Author Topic: American history's "sad" aspects require action  (Read 4382 times)

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Offline Adrian's Dad

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2008, 12:46:48 PM »
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama opposes offering reparations to the descendants of slaves, putting him at odds with some black groups and leaders.



The man with a serious chance to become the nation's first black president argues that government should instead combat the legacy of slavery by improving schools, health care and the economy for all.



"I have said in the past — and I'll repeat again — that the best reparations we can provide are good schools in the inner city and jobs for people who are unemployed," the Illinois Democrat said recently.



Some two dozen members of Congress are co-sponsors of legislation to create a commission that would study reparations — that is, payments and programs to make up for the damage done by slavery.



The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People supports the legislation, too. Cities around the country, including Obama's home of Chicago, have endorsed the idea, and so has a major union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.



Obama has worked to be seen as someone who will bring people together, not divide them into various interest groups with checklists of demands. Supporting reparations could undermine that image and make him appear to be pandering to black voters.



"Let's not be naive. Sen. Obama is running for president of the United States, and so he is in a constant battle to save his political life," said Kibibi Tyehimba, co-chair of the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America. "In light of the demographics of this country, I don't think it's realistic to expect him to do anything other than what he's done.

"

But this is not a position Obama adopted just for the presidential campaign. He voiced the same concerns about reparations during his successful run for the Senate in 2004.



There's enough flexibility in the term "reparations" that Obama can oppose them and still have plenty of common ground with supporters.



The NAACP says reparations could take the form of government programs to help struggling people of all races. Efforts to improve schools in the inner city could also aid students in the mountains of West Virginia, said Hilary Shelton, director of the NAACP's Washington bureau.



"The solution could be broad and sweeping," Shelton said.



The National Urban League — a group Obama is to address Saturday — avoids the word "reparations" as too vague and highly charged. But the group advocates government action to close the gaps between white America and black America.



Urban League President Marc Morial said he expects his members to press Obama on how he intends to close those gaps and what action he would take in the first 100 days of his presidency.



"What steps should we take as a nation to alleviate the effects of racial exclusion and racial discrimination?" Morial asked.



The House voted this week to apologize for slavery. The resolution, which was approved on a voice vote, does not mention reparations, but past opponents have argued that an apology would increase pressure for concrete action.



Obama says an apology would be appropriate but not particularly helpful in improving the lives of black Americans. Reparations could also be a distraction, he said.



In a 2004 questionnaire, he told the NAACP, "I fear that reparations would be an excuse for some to say, 'We've paid our debt,' and to avoid the much harder work.

"

Taking questions Sunday at a conference of minority journalists, Obama said he would be willing to talk to American Indian leaders about an apology for the nation's treatment of their people.



Pressed for his position on apologizing to blacks or offering reparations, Obama said he was more interested in taking action to help people struggling to get by. Because many of them are minorities, he said, that would help the same people who would stand to benefit from reparations.



"If we have a program, for example, of universal health care, that will disproportionately affect people of color, because they're disproportionately uninsured," Obama said. "If we've got an agenda that says every child in America should get — should be able to go to college, regardless of income, that will disproportionately affect people of color, because it's oftentimes our children who can't afford to go to college.

"

One reparations advocate, Vernellia Randall, a law professor at the University of Dayton, bluntly responded: "I think he's dead wrong.

"

She said aid to the poor in general won't close the gaps — poor blacks would still trail poor whites, and middle-class blacks would still lag behind middle-class whites. Instead, assistance must be aimed directly at the people facing the after-effects of slavery and Jim Crow laws, she said.

Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #16 on: September 17, 2008, 03:16:02 AM »
As a supporter of reparations, I wonder why anyone would think that I'd be satisfied with a measly check. As if I could be bought off, some kind of handout or guilt payment.

The first definition of reparation is  "the making of amends for wrong or injury done: reparation for an injustice. "


Offline Scott H.

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #17 on: September 17, 2008, 10:21:25 AM »
What about "reperations" for the Native Americans?


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Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #18 on: September 17, 2008, 02:02:33 PM »
What about "reperations" for the Native Americans?
What about them? Or, should they be encouraged to forget their heritage, and pretend that everything is just fine now?

I'm curious to know, when the last holocaust survivor dies off, should the Jews forget it ever happened and move on?


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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #19 on: September 17, 2008, 02:17:49 PM »
 No, I was meaning that all these reperations seem to be targeted toward black people. Yes, they were enslaved and taken from their homeland, treated worse than animals, but the Native Americans (IMO) still had it worse. They were nearly eradicated, entire tribes whiped from the face of the Earth. Their homeland was taken from them by unfair trade or by force.
 I know, they have casinos and crap, and they don't have to pay taxes on stuff, and it's legal (supposedly) for them to "smoke the peace pipe", but honestly, do you not feel just a little guilty for what has happened to them? Hell, I do, and my family name didn't come to the US until 1912.
 I hear a lot of the "poor black man", but what about the "poor native American"? I don't mean to start a huge discussion about this, I just wish people would quit concentrating on a race that is becoming a majority and think about those that are a minority in their own land.


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Offline joey791

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #20 on: September 17, 2008, 07:19:33 PM »
I can't tell you how much I'm against reparations.

First off less than 1/4 of Americans owned slaves, the majority of them were sold by their tribal leaders(check out this little show called "Roots"). Both sides of my family never were rich and have never owned slaves. In fact as a young child growing up in a farming town my father worked the rows ahead of the black workers(that were paid, he wasn't) to knock down any briars and run out any snakes so they wouldn't get hurt. I owe no one anything in this matter. It is wrong that it happened but their are no slaves alive today to pay reparations too. The majority of the ones that yell "reparations" already want something for nothing. I can honestly say of all my black friends this is one thing that they are totally against, in fact the statement before this was stated by everyone of them.


Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2008, 08:38:06 PM »
No, I was meaning that all these reperations seem to be targeted toward black people. Yes, they were enslaved and taken from their homeland, treated worse than animals, but the Native Americans (IMO) still had it worse. They were nearly eradicated, entire tribes whiped from the face of the Earth. Their homeland was taken from them by unfair trade or by force.
 I know, they have casinos and crap, and they don't have to pay taxes on stuff, and it's legal (supposedly) for them to "smoke the peace pipe", but honestly, do you not feel just a little guilty for what has happened to them? Hell, I do, and my family name didn't come to the US until 1912.
 I hear a lot of the "poor black man", but what about the "poor native American"? I don't mean to start a huge discussion about this, I just wish people would quit concentrating on a race that is becoming a majority and think about those that are a minority in their own land.
AFAIK, blacks are far from being a "majority" in this country, I think we make up something like 13 percent of the population LOL.

Its tricky and ultimately unprofitable to compare who got punked worse than whom. The Native Americans (those who survived, at least) kept their names, their language, their history and culture. Thats more than what you could say about the Africans who were kidnapped and forced into slavery; Those Africans lost everything and had nothing to pass onto their children. No native dialects, no collective history, nothing. The survivors of the middle passage experienced a cultural genocide.

What does it mean when a people lose their culture, their history? It means they really aren't a people anymore, just a collection of lost individuals. Theres no greater narrative. It amuses me to think what would happen if we told the Jews, or the Chinese or Armenians that their past doesn't really matter, it happened a long time ago and they should just get over it.


Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #22 on: September 22, 2008, 09:18:30 PM »
I can't tell you how much I'm against reparations.

First off less than 1/4 of Americans owned slaves, the majority of them were sold by their tribal leaders(check out this little show called "Roots"). Both sides of my family never were rich and have never owned slaves. In fact as a young child growing up in a farming town my father worked the rows ahead of the black workers(that were paid, he wasn't) to knock down any briars and run out any snakes so they wouldn't get hurt. I owe no one anything in this matter. It is wrong that it happened but their are no slaves alive today to pay reparations too. The majority of the ones that yell "reparations" already want something for nothing. I can honestly say of all my black friends this is one thing that they are totally against, in fact the statement before this was stated by everyone of them.


Yes, if you frame reparations as a cash payout that YOU must make for slavery, to people who just want to rip you off, I guess you won't find many people ready to take up the case for reparations.

I'm curious though, why does the story end at slavery?

After slavery was legally banned, there followed 100 years of dejure and defacto discrimination and segregation. Jim Crow, lynchings and a systemic effort to keep minorities as second class citizens. Inferior schools, redlining property, exclusion from power and credit. There was no post-slavery golden age where everyone got equal footing.

We are where we are now, because of where we have been. Any accounting of our national history that mysteriously leaves out the post-Civil War era is a faulty accounting. The idea that we're only responsible for things we were personally involved in, is silly.

As far as tribal leaders selling people into slavery...its true. Humans have that tendency to do terrible things to each other, if they think they'll gain monetarily. You see it today with drug dealers and other lowlifes.

Let me cut to the chase.

I could make the argument that our society has been shaped by centuries of discrimination and racism. This has determined who is at the top and who is at the bottom (generally speaking) Not just blacks, but Latinos, Asians, Native Americans, etc.

I propose the following "reparations"

* A repudiation of "race" as a valid concept, and a repudiation of racism. This imaginary division between humans has done nothing but harm and destruction, we can seriously begin to move away from it once we treat it like the fallacy it is.

* An acknowledgment of the effects of "race" on our country, ghettos, reservations, crime and illness. This does not absolve anyone of personal responsibility of their own actions but highlights the circumstances surrounding their lives.

* An honest account of our American history.

* A commitment to quality education for all Americans. Talented teachers, clean facilities, ample supplies.

* Affordable, low cost universal health care.

Note that this is not a payout to any particular group. I've never met anyone who was in support of reparations that wanted to be paid off; its actually pretty insulting to suggest that we're beggars and con men. We're more interested in education and health for all Americans. Every American would benefit from a healthier society, a more educated society.

Thats reparations as *I* see it.



Offline joey791

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #23 on: September 22, 2008, 11:12:30 PM »

Yes, if you frame reparations as a cash payout that YOU must make for slavery, to people who just want to rip you off, I guess you won't find many people ready to take up the case for reparations.

I'm curious though, why does the story end at slavery?

After slavery was legally banned, there followed 100 years of dejure and defacto discrimination and segregation. Jim Crow, lynchings and a systemic effort to keep minorities as second class citizens. Inferior schools, redlining property, exclusion from power and credit. There was no post-slavery golden age where everyone got equal footing.

We are where we are now, because of where we have been. Any accounting of our national history that mysteriously leaves out the post-Civil War era is a faulty accounting. The idea that we're only responsible for things we were personally involved in, is silly.

As far as tribal leaders selling people into slavery...its true. Humans have that tendency to do terrible things to each other, if they think they'll gain monetarily. You see it today with drug dealers and other lowlifes.

Let me cut to the chase.

I could make the argument that our society has been shaped by centuries of discrimination and racism. This has determined who is at the top and who is at the bottom (generally speaking) Not just blacks, but Latinos, Asians, Native Americans, etc.

You forgot women

I propose the following "reparations"

* A repudiation of "race" as a valid concept, and a repudiation of racism. This imaginary division between humans has done nothing but harm and destruction, we can seriously begin to move away from it once we treat it like the fallacy it is.

Funny you should bring this up on any government form that you fill out, your race is always asked. How will you do the racism part, no matter what is said or done there will always be people that hate on all sides, and I think Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would have problems with you taking their livelihood away

* An acknowledgment of the effects of "race" on our country, ghettos, reservations, crime and illness. This does not absolve anyone of personal responsibility of their own actions but highlights the circumstances surrounding their lives.

By who and what will this accomplish again?

* An honest account of our American history.

What part of our American history is lies?

* A commitment to quality education for all Americans. Talented teachers, clean facilities, ample supplies.

Come to where I live I can show you how well this has worked out here

* Affordable, low cost universal health care.

Don't see how this falls in and everytime I hear universal health care for some reason "I'm going to pay more taxes for you to have something that you wont get yourself comes to mind".

Note that this is not a payout to any particular group. I've never met anyone who was in support of reparations that wanted to be paid off; its actually pretty insulting to suggest that we're beggars and con men. We're more interested in education and health for all Americans. Every American would benefit from a healthier society, a more educated society.

Thats reparations as *I* see it.

I disagree because you cant tell people how to think, what to think, etc. So to me all I see is more government waste. Just my honest opinion.



Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #24 on: September 23, 2008, 02:42:36 AM »
Quote
You forgot women
"etc."  :)*

Quote
Funny you should bring this up on any government form that you fill out, your race is always asked. How will you do the racism part, no matter what is said or done there will always be people that hate on all sides, and I think Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would have problems with you taking their livelihood away
So will Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the right-wing hate machine. But I'd think you'd be happy to do away with Jesse and Al, no?

Whats not called for here is a government program, but a personal commitment to change ones own behavior.

Quote
By who and what will this accomplish again?
Anyone and everyone whos tired of old rhetoric and stereotypes.

Quote
What part of our American history is lies?
We could start with the discovery of America by Columbus and go from there. Or we could talk about the Japanese internment camps and how US citizens were stripped of their property due largely to racism.

We made Reparations to those citizens, by the way.

Quote
Come to where I live I can show you how well this has worked out here
Where do u live?

Quote
Don't see how this falls in and everytime I hear universal health care for some reason "I'm going to pay more taxes for you to have something that you wont get yourself comes to mind".
And you pay taxes when those same people show up very ill in the emergency room. I'd always heard that an ounce of prevention was worth a pound of cure. Do you believe that you shouldn't have to pay for anything that doesn't directly benefit yourself?
Quote
I disagree because you cant tell people how to think, what to think, etc. So to me all I see is more government waste. Just my honest opinion.
Actually, you can. Conservatives do it all the time, telling people what to think.





Offline plano tony

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #25 on: September 23, 2008, 08:16:44 AM »
Actually, remember all those Jim Crow laws and segregation you just went off against?  That was an attempt to legislate thought.  It didn't work/Doesn't work.

You can't legislate thought, and you can't legislate morality (mainly, because you can't legislate thought).

A) My family didn't get over to the US until 1898.  Do I have to pay reparations?

B) The only part of my past that was over prior came over as "indentured servants" (slaves who could work for their freedom).  Do I get to get paid reparations?  Even if it is just a percentage?

If nobody is going to bleed to death within the next 12 seconds, calm down there, Cowboy.

Offline joey791

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #26 on: September 23, 2008, 09:44:15 PM »
Actually, remember all those Jim Crow laws and segregation you just went off against?  That was an attempt to legislate thought.  It didn't work/Doesn't work.

You can't legislate thought, and you can't legislate morality (mainly, because you can't legislate thought).

A) My family didn't get over to the US until 1898.  Do I have to pay reparations?

B) The only part of my past that was over prior came over as "indentured servants" (slaves who could work for their freedom).  Do I get to get paid reparations?  Even if it is just a percentage?



Well said

Offline joey791

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #27 on: September 23, 2008, 09:56:43 PM »

Quote
Funny you should bring this up on any government form that you fill out, your race is always asked. How will you do the racism part, no matter what is said or done there will always be people that hate on all sides, and I think Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would have problems with you taking their livelihood away
So will Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the right-wing hate machine. But I'd think you'd be happy to do away with Jesse and Al, no?

Funny thing is I cant stand Rush Limbaugh either, never figured out who being an announcer for a MLB team gave you the credentials to be a political intellect

Whats not called for here is a government program, but a personal commitment to change ones own behavior.

See Tony's post about thought that exactly what I'm saying

Quote
By who and what will this accomplish again?
Anyone and everyone whos tired of old rhetoric and stereotypes.

see above statements

Quote
What part of our American history is lies?
We could start with the discovery of America by Columbus and go from there. Or we could talk about the Japanese internment camps and how US citizens were stripped of their property due largely to racism.

We made Reparations to those citizens, by the way.

That was all taught where I went to school

Quote
Come to where I live I can show you how well this has worked out here
Where do u live?

Louisiana


Quote
Don't see how this falls in and everytime I hear universal health care for some reason "I'm going to pay more taxes for you to have something that you wont get yourself comes to mind".
And you pay taxes when those same people show up very ill in the emergency room. I'd always heard that an ounce of prevention was worth a pound of cure. Do you believe that you shouldn't have to pay for anything that doesn't directly benefit yourself?
Quote

No not at all but the job I have gives me access to many places and things that people dont get to see. I wont mention names here but I have a good friend that is on disability and in a wheelchair, that should have a better life than what he has currently with assistance. But a good guy that truly deserves it doesnt get enough to live the life he should live while locally I watch and have worked at government assistance buildings where 6th and 7th generation welfare recepients that could work get there free tax money and they pick up these checks in a brand new vehicle(even show up in a brand new Hummer) when not only can I not afford that but they are getting it with no work done. And also you havent followed alot of my posts, when it comes to assistance I am all for it for people that need it TEMPORARY to get on their feet and the only people that deserve full time assistance are the truly disabled, veterans, and senior citizens.


I disagree because you cant tell people how to think, what to think, etc. So to me all I see is more government waste. Just my honest opinion.
Actually, you can. Conservatives do it all the time, telling people what to think.

Yeah and thats what makes me a dangerous person, I follow the best person for the job(or the lesser of two evils) rather they be Dem, Rep, or Independent, check my posts again I'm still waiting for a party that represents The Constitution and the working man.






Offline Shaolin

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #28 on: September 29, 2008, 10:34:47 PM »
Actually, remember all those Jim Crow laws and segregation you just went off against?  That was an attempt to legislate thought.  It didn't work/Doesn't work.
Ummm, it did work. The point and effect of Jim Crow was to separate people, with one group becoming an underclass. And it was violently defended by people who didn't want it to end.

Quote
You can't legislate thought, and you can't legislate morality (mainly, because you can't legislate thought).
Sure you can, there are a number of states now that have anti-gay laws on the books, no marriage, no domestic rights, adoptions, etc. We would probably agree that you shouldn't, but as it stands, we do.

Quote
A) My family didn't get over to the US until 1898.  Do I have to pay reparations?
No. History did not matter prior to your existence, and you should resent any effort to recognize or pay for anything that happened prior to your birth. Its not like you had anything to do with the Magna Carta, or the drafting of the Constitution.

Quote
B) The only part of my past that was over prior came over as "indentured servants" (slaves who could work for their freedom).  Do I get to get paid reparations?  Even if it is just a percentage?
You could make a case for it, I'd listen. Were those indentured servants sold like cattle, raped, murdered and treated no better than pack animals? After freedom, were they in perpetual danger of being lynched? Cheated out of or chased off their own property? Denied education?


Offline plano tony

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Re: American history's "sad" aspects require action
« Reply #29 on: September 29, 2008, 11:40:20 PM »
So, you're just arrogant?  Or, just a victim?

The idiot comment about "...History did not matter prior to your existence..." is about the dumbest statement I've EVER heard concerning this subject.

You think that just because I'm white, I am somehow responsible for the history of the world.  That's just stupid.

My ancestory is Jew ... Do I get reparations from the Egyptians?  Babylonians?
« Last Edit: September 29, 2008, 11:43:09 PM by plano tony »
If nobody is going to bleed to death within the next 12 seconds, calm down there, Cowboy.

 



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