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Thread: America 200 years later: sorry about that whole slavery thing

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    Elite Member bychance's Avatar
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    Arrow America 200 years later: sorry about that whole slavery thing

    Senate approves resolution apologizing for slavery - CNN.com

    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The U.S. Senate on Thursday passed a resolution apologizing to African-Americans for the wrongs of slavery.


    The nonbinding resolution sponsored by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, is similar to a House resolution adopted last year that acknowledged the wrongs of slavery but offered no reparations. The House will have to vote on the issue again because the composition of that chamber changed after last November's elections.


    The resolution was approved on a voice vote.
    Because it is nonbinding, it does not have to be forwarded to the president for his signature.


    Several states have passed similar resolutions, but the House resolution was the first time a branch of the federal government did so.


    Harkin's resolution "acknowledges the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality and inhumanity of slavery, and Jim Crow laws," and "apologizes to African-Americans on behalf of the people of the United States for the wrongs committed against them and their ancestors who suffered under slavery and Jim Crow laws."


    Jim Crow laws were state and local laws enacted mostly in U.S. Southern and border states between the 1870s and 1965 that denied African-Americans the right to vote and other civil liberties, as well as legally segregated them from whites.


    Some members of the African-American community have called on lawmakers to give cash payments or other financial benefits to descendants of slaves as compensation for the suffering caused by slavery.

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    This came on CNN last night at work and an older man his wife and granddaughter(I'm assuming connection) were there he starts saying "like this is the first time we apologized" "Will they get over it NOW?" "Now they'll want reparations!" I was like WTF! I gave him the MEANEST look I hate how people think everyone agrees with their bigotry,

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Some members of the African-American community have called on lawmakers to give cash payments or other financial benefits to descendants of slaves as compensation for the suffering caused by slavery.
    There will NEVER be any reparations for slavery, so people need to let that go already.

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    Elite Member darksithbunny's Avatar
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    How do people who were not directly involved in a situation, apologize to people who were also not involved with a situation?

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    Elite Member TheONe's Avatar
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    It's not going to happen BUT I think that one of the reasons why some African Americans still talk about repirations is because 1. They were promised. and 2. Native Americans DID actually get and still continue to get repirations in the form of Land (albeit reservations land), Tax breaks (casinos) and tax exempt bonds, and some paid education. I think that some African Americans feel that in the case of repirations they are still being treated seperately.
    "My style is impetuous, my defense is impregnable and I'm just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat your children. Praise be to Allah." TEAM MILEY!!

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    I want gay reparations.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    i want woman reparations for the thousands of years of sexism and oppression.

    but seriously, history is full of people getting treated like shit and you can't expect future generations to pay up for the damage done in the past. once there are no living survivors left, it's over, let it go.
    it's better to focus on more productive ways of redressing the balance - laws, affirmative action, social programmes, etc.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Super Moderator twitchy2.0's Avatar
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    Let it go, sure, but it doesn't hurt to acknowledge that it was wrong first.
    "If you are not outraged, then you are not paying attention," Heather Heyer's facebook quote.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheONe View Post
    It's not going to happen BUT I think that one of the reasons why some African Americans still talk about repirations is because 1. They were promised. and 2. Native Americans DID actually get and still continue to get repirations in the form of Land (albeit reservations land), Tax breaks (casinos) and tax exempt bonds, and some paid education. I think that some African Americans feel that in the case of repirations they are still being treated seperately.
    I get what you're saying. The U.S. did promise blacks reparations at the end of slavery in the form of 40 acres & a mule, which never happened. The issue of monetary reparations for slavery came to the forefront after the U.S. gave the Japanese reparations for internment during WWII. And that only happened because Japan became a major economic power and the U.S. needed to kiss some ass.

    As for Native Americans any land or tax exemptions they got were just a no-brainer since this entire country used to belong to them and they were virtually wiped out.

    As much as I would love a check, it's not going to suddenly make up for slavery. The only true reparation that the U.S. can give for slavery is to become a country where the descendants of slaves are truly treated as equals and everybody has the same level playing field.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twitchy2.0 View Post
    Let it go, sure, but it doesn't hurt to acknowledge that it was wrong first.
    yeah of course. but it should be taken as a symbolic (albeit still important) gesture, and not as grounds to sue for reparations.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Elite Member katerpillar's Avatar
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    Suddenly I don't feel so embarassed about the 50+ years it took the Australian government to apologise to the Aborigines for the Stolen Generation. Seriously, 200 years?! I just assumed the US government had apologised well before now.

    As for the issue of reparations/compensation/whatever you want to call it, fair enough when it is paid to someone who directly lived through and experienced whatever it is that was wrongly done. I don't object to compensation being paid to Japanese-American internment camp detainees, Aborigines who were unfairly removed from their family or Holocaust victims, for example; as for the great-great-great whatever descendants of slaves who never suffered, but get a nice cheque anyway? Umm... not so much. I agree with the others above who've said that social programmes, scholarships and good old equality are far better.

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    Elite Member Aella's Avatar
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    ...they hadn't apologised before? WOW.
    "Remember to always be yourself. Unless you suck." - Joss Whedon

    "The only thing more expensive than education is ignorance." -Benjamin Franklin

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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    I get what you're saying. The U.S. did promise blacks reparations at the end of slavery in the form of 40 acres & a mule, which never happened. The issue of monetary reparations for slavery came to the forefront after the U.S. gave the Japanese reparations for internment during WWII. And that only happened because Japan became a major economic power and the U.S. needed to kiss some ass.

    As for Native Americans any land or tax exemptions they got were just a no-brainer since this entire country used to belong to them and they were virtually wiped out.

    As much as I would love a check, it's not going to suddenly make up for slavery. The only true reparation that the U.S. can give for slavery is to become a country where the descendants of slaves are truly treated as equals and everybody has the same level playing field.
    I'm not sure that was the reason why. I have to agree with katerpillar, right or wrong, those reparations were for nisei, those Americans of Japanese descent who were interned during the war. These people were directly affected by the war removal from their homes, and their plight and issues were separate from Japan. If you know who suffered what indignity and whatnot, it's much clearer.

    My understanding is that the issue is not as clear cut as it seems. Aren't there people whose great grand relatives never suffered from slavery, for whatever issues? When you talk about reparations here, how do you determine who gets what, as the people who directly suffered are long gone? And what about the white European immigrants who also suffered the indignity and suffering of slavery during the early period of American times (not trying to compare or saying one is worse than other, just trying to bring all issues to the table).

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    Elite Member TheONe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    I get what you're saying. The U.S. did promise blacks reparations at the end of slavery in the form of 40 acres & a mule, which never happened. The issue of monetary reparations for slavery came to the forefront after the U.S. gave the Japanese reparations for internment during WWII. And that only happened because Japan became a major economic power and the U.S. needed to kiss some ass.

    As for Native Americans any land or tax exemptions they got were just a no-brainer since this entire country used to belong to them and they were virtually wiped out.

    As much as I would love a check, it's not going to suddenly make up for slavery. The only true reparation that the U.S. can give for slavery is to become a country where the descendants of slaves are truly treated as equals and everybody has the same level playing field.
    Agreed
    "My style is impetuous, my defense is impregnable and I'm just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat your children. Praise be to Allah." TEAM MILEY!!

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celeb_2006 View Post
    I'm not sure that was the reason why. I have to agree with katerpillar, right or wrong, those reparations were for nisei, those Americans of Japanese descent who were interned during the war. These people were directly affected by the war removal from their homes, and their plight and issues were separate from Japan. If you know who suffered what indignity and whatnot, it's much clearer.

    My understanding is that the issue is not as clear cut as it seems. Aren't there people whose great grand relatives never suffered from slavery, for whatever issues? When you talk about reparations here, how do you determine who gets what, as the people who directly suffered are long gone? And what about the white European immigrants who also suffered the indignity and suffering of slavery during the early period of American times (not trying to compare or saying one is worse than other, just trying to bring all issues to the table).
    I get what you're saying, but I stand by what I said. The U.S. screwed over Native Americans, but never gave out cash reparations, same with free slaves, same with Irish immigrants who were treated like shit. The U.S. only did that because Japan was/is a major economic power, not out of any sense to set things right.

    Personally, I'm not concerned about reparations, because I know it's never going to happen.

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