Time to Pay What Is Owed

The case for reparations

I admit, I have wondered why our generation need pay reparations to black Americans enslaved by past generations, but this brilliant and persuasive piece in the Sunday New York Times Magazine has convinced me that it’s time for us to right the wrongs of 400 years. It’s not about paying a fine, it’s about building a future for all Americans.

Nikole Hannah-Jones on the steps we need to take as a country to repare the damage we created building this nation:

If true justice and equality are ever to be achieved in the United States, the country must finally take seriously what it owes black Americans.

It’s not enough to fix policing, end job discrimination, or integrate schools. To restore balance in this country we must give black Americans the same opportunity as white Americans to succeed, build wealth, and care for their children and grandchildren.

Wealth begets wealth, and white Americans have had centuries of government assistance to accumulate wealth, while the government has for the vast history of this country worked against black Americans doing the same.

As a nation we continue to behave shamefully to the people who lived on this land before we moved in, and to the people who built the economy as chattel slaves, and that inequality is perpetuated generation after generation. It’s time to fix this. Now.