It was a click bait question, planted on a social media group page like a wokeness land mine just waiting for someone to step on it. Want to trigger a liberal? Just say “No” to reparations.
“REPARATIONS TO BLACKS! What do you all think about paying off the African Americans?”
“No,” I replied.
The Biden administration is fondling the reparations ball right now, so it is a relevant topic. The thing is, Democrats have been slapping that ball into their gloves and threatening to throw since then-Congressman John Conyers introduced the first bill on the issue in 1989. Barack Obama wouldn’t touch it though. He was a coward. He knew it wouldn’t fly. And everyone knows he sucked at pitching. Like all liberals, he was afraid to throw the reparations ball because he knew somebody — even someone with a relatively modest skill at swinging bat — was going to smack that puppy out of the park for good. Then what? Can’t keep dangling a carrot you no longer have. Of course, he’s backing it now. Anything to get his face back on TV. Right?
One of the more vocal self-anointed moral authority lecturers of the Nextdoor group, Jim Vivelo, actually posted the definition of rep-a-ra-tion – complete with the proper pronunciation — ahead of his lengthy “bask in my wokeness” monologue. Then, after tacking out two set-up sentences — a reminder that freed slaves had been “promised, by the federal government, reparations of 40 acres and a mule,” and how “that debt hasn’t been paid since their freedom was declared and ratified in the constitution in 1885” – he spent the next three paragraphs letting everyone know if they did not agree with his assessment — that we owe “$142k per every descendent of that horrific time in our history” — then we are nothing but “human parasites.”
It’s like Ronald Reagan once said: “…the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.”
First: The ones with something feeding off them are called “the host.” “Parasites” are the ones who find a place to latch on and start sucking.
Second: The federal government didn’t promise freed slaves anything. It was General William Sherman who promised they would be given land and loaned mules to work it.
Third: The reason this “promise” wasn’t kept then was because — following the assassination of Republican President Abraham Lincoln, who had freed the slaves — President Andrew Johnson — a Democrat — rescinded all efforts to distribute land to those slaves the moment he assumed office in 1865.
“Regardless of your feelings and opinion,” Vivelo concluded smugly. “It’s not about you.”
Well isn’t that special? I’m sorry honey, but if I am being expected to pay someone for something I didn’t do for something they never suffered, it is — at least in part — about me. The hard truth is, this isn’t about today’s African Americans. They were never slaves. I never owned one. I owe them nothing.
Of course, feeling this way is what liberals say makes me mean, insensitive. A racist.
I’ve said it before. When it comes to liberals, “it’s all kudzu.” They come up with their self-righteous social justice ideas – all designed to make themselves feel morally superior to the people they expect to do the work and pay for it all — but they never think it through. Ultimately, their ill-conceived, feel-good solutions wind up causing far more damage than the problem they thought they could solve.
I tried to get them to think about what they are demanding, reparations to literally millions of people. I posed the same logical questions, repeatedly. But none of these holier-than-thou brow-beaters knew the truth about slave history and none wanted to discuss rational answers as to how this reparations endeavor would be pulled off.
Precisely how much will be paid and to whom? Only to African American descendants? How do you define “African-American”? What percentage of slave blood qualifies for payment? Does anyone with any slave blood get paid the same amount or are we going to go on a pay scale? What is that scale? Are these payments ever going to end? Or is this going to be like a White-Guilt ATM machine, dispensing remorse assuagement dollars to any African American – however far-removed from slavery — who is here now or ever enters our country from now through all eternity?
And who pays? Just white people? All white people? Or just white people whose ancestors owned slaves? What about the black people who owned slaves? What about the African Americans whose ancestors were slaves in another country and immigrated here after? Do we pay them, too?
“The United States has given reparations to several groups it has wronged in the past,” uber-liberal Victor Goitia chimed in. “Why is it not something to be considered?”
He’s talking, at least in part, about the Japanese Americans.
It’s a reflex, a talking point liberals kick out when the subject of reparations comes up. They can’t resist. They think it’s a winner. But what they fail to address is that it was by the authority of Executive Order 9066 — drafted by the Democrat controlled congress and signed into law by Democrat president Franklin Delano Roosevelt after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the onset of World War II – that Japanese American citizens were rounded up from the liberal West Coast and forced into internment camps. On March 21, the Democrat-controlled congress even passed Public Law 503, which made violation of Executive Order 9066 a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a $5,000 fine. Brutal. Isn’t it?
But, as usual (when it comes to human rights and real social justice) it was a Republican president — Ronald Reagan – who signed Public Law 100-383 almost four decades later, in 1988, which acknowledged the injustice of internment, apologized for it, and provided a $20,000 cash payment to each person who was interned.
You see. That’s the big difference. The payments were made “to each person interned,” not to those who weren’t imprisoned and not to their offspring. Liberals don’t want to discuss that part.
They also dismiss the fact that it was the Africans who sold their fellow Africans into the slave trade in the first place.
Back when CNN had an interest in reporting the truth — Oct. 20, 1995 — Correspondent Gary Strieker published an interesting piece called “Researchers uncover Africans’ part in slavery.”
“It was the Africans themselves who were enslaving their fellow Africans, sending them to the coast to be shipped outside,” researcher Akosua Perbi of the University of Ghana revealed.
“Based on her studies, Perbi says that European slave traders, almost without exception, did not themselves capture slaves. They bought them from other Africans, usually kings or chiefs or wealthy merchants.”
Well, how about that. Turns out, slavery was big business in Africa back then. Moreover, according to the latest Global Slavery Index, Africa is the still the undisputed epicenter of modern-day slavery.
But liberals don’t care about that either. Most don’t even know real history. They never bother to do any research to find the truth. They just want to get a quick “woke” buzz, by banging down another shot of altruism espresso.
Take Bree Graham, for example. She reminds me of the unpopular kid in school who wasn’t good at sports but got teachers to force the others to let her play in the game anyway just so she could demand a participation trophy.
“… let’s just start this over for a moment, “she proposed in her wandering effort to sound intelligent. “In my mind it doesn’t really matter if Africans sold Africans to white, Portuguese, Spanish or British slavers. The slavers were guilty, but the point here is what happened to them once they arrived on American soil.”
Again. I didn’t do anything to them. I owe them nothing
“Africans may have sold other Africans,” she tried again later, “but African Americans did not sell African Americans. They became African Americans after being brought here as slaves. Please re-think what you have said. I think you are confused. This is not really a discussion.”
Boggles the mind. Doesn’t it? Well, at least now we know why we need warning labels that say things like: “Don’t stick your hand in the wood chipper.” Evidently, “woke” doesn’t mean “smart.”
“From my view,” she said further (it was always about her shallow “mind” and her limited “view”), “the word woke, as a term, references the ability to stay alert to racism and issues of social justice.”
Of course you believe that, sweetie. That way, you can spend your whole life judging others and imagining you see racism everywhere. “Seek and ye shall find,” darlin’. It’s a self-fulfilling commandment.
That’s what liberals love doing the most, telling other people how mean and racist they are and what they are doing wrong and everything they need to do to fix it. Because ultimately, the more time they spend accusing everyone else of being cold-hearted, selfish, racists, the less time they have to spend addressing their own real history and personal shortcomings.