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

  1. #31
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    ^^That's my ultimate issue with the 'apology for slavery.' The timing. Why wait until Obama is president to suddenly apologize for slavery? It goes back to the U.S. paying out reparations to the Japanese Americans for WWII internment because of Japan's economic rise. Both things were motivated by other events, and not by a true sense to make up for a historical wrong.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celeb_2006 View Post

    It's sad other nations like Australia have led the way. It really isn't that hard, an apology isn't casting blame on anyone in the present. It's just an official record of acknowledgement of the past wrong. Of course it won't address current issues nor solve problems. But that's not the point.
    australia didn't lead the way. it finally did it last year and only because the right-wing and that asshat john howard finally lost the elections. i'd say new zealand and canada are more progressive in this respect, at least in terms of being honest about the skeletons in their closets and apologising for them.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  3. #33
    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    ^^That's my ultimate issue with the 'apology for slavery.' The timing. Why wait until Obama is president to suddenly apologize for slavery? It goes back to the U.S. paying out reparations to the Japanese Americans for WWII internment because of Japan's economic rise. Both things were motivated by other events, and not by a true sense to make up for a historical wrong.
    When the House passed the resolution last year, Obama wasn't in office yet. Maybe his election kind of spurred on the Senate this year. Who knows.

  4. #34
    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    australia didn't lead the way. it finally did it last year and only because the right-wing and that asshat john howard finally lost the elections. i'd say new zealand and canada are more progressive in this respect, at least in terms of being honest about the skeletons in their closets and apologising for them.
    True, but surely led America.

  5. #35
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celeb_2006 View Post
    When the House passed the resolution last year, Obama wasn't in office yet. Maybe his election kind of spurred on the Senate this year. Who knows.
    But if Obama hadn't been running last year and been sworn in this year would the resolution have even been brought up, let alone passed? Slavery's been over for almost 150 years and now they suddenly apologize for it?

    But, overall, while I disagree with the reasons/timing for the apology I don't fault the government for making it.

  6. #36
    Bronze Member Banshee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    You're right about that African trading. But what happened on a larger scale was the Europeans used a form of divide and conquer, and stirred up the existing conflicts between the different African nations & tribes. That led to more wars, and the different tribes & nations sold the prisoners of war to the Europeans, not realizing that the larger plan was to enslave them all and divide the continent up like a pie between the different European countries. The number of Africans that were sold/traded pales in comparison with the millions that were captured and loaded onto slave ships.

    Not taking anything out on you Banshee, but it irks me whenever the topic of slavery comes up and people keep trying to bring up the fact that some of the Africans were selling/trading other Africans, as if it equals or lessens what the Europeans did. It's like the people who say that the Indians traded with/shared the land with the Europeans, as if it lessens the fact that the Indians were virtually wiped out and their land stolen.

    I understand what you're saying and I in no way meant to lessen anyone's part in anything, but I do think that the entire issue has to be examined. Victimization occurred in a lot of different ways and I think it was a failure by humanity, not by any particular race and humanity as a whole has to figure out how to heal the wounds from it, not just one group. Does that make sense? I'm having trouble articulating what I mean.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banshee View Post
    I understand what you're saying and I in no way meant to lessen anyone's part in anything, but I do think that the entire issue has to be examined. Victimization occurred in a lot of different ways and I think it was a failure by humanity, not by any particular race and humanity as a whole has to figure out how to heal the wounds from it, not just one group. Does that make sense? I'm having trouble articulating what I mean.
    I understand what you're trying to say, and you articulated it well. And I agree that the slave trade, as well as the Holocaust and the genocide of the Native Americans, was a failure by humanity as a whole, not just any specific group.

    Which is why I get ticked when people (not you Banshee) say that blacks should get over slavery, or Jews should get over the Holocaust. Those things aren't just a part of black & Jewish history, but a part of world history. No group should constantly harp on the trials that they've been through, but people shouldn't try to act as if there is an expiration date on those events either.

  8. #38
    Bronze Member Banshee's Avatar
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    My mother's favorite saying is that people who forget history are doomed to repeat it. I don't think that we should ever forget the atrocities the human race is capable of, but lingering on them instead of learning and moving forward doesn't help us grow, either.

  9. #39
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banshee View Post
    Well, if apologies really are going to happen, then the African countries that the slaves were originally from should be apologizing, too. White people (I'm not going to say Americans because the Europeans were largely involved in the slave trade, as well) didn't act alone. They had native African contacts that acted as their agents who rounded up and sold their own people for profit.

    Not saying anyone is better or worse than anyone else, but the blame should be spread to all places it belongs if we are going to be laying it out.
    Actually, there has been at least one African nation that has apologized for its role in the slave trade. Happened during Clinton's term in office. Don't remember which nation.

    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.
    Native Americans did not and do not get "reparations." They have tribal sovereignty, which is why they are allowed to self govern and have casinos. We signed treaties with them waaay back when. Treaties that we don't always honor.

    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    ^^That's my ultimate issue with the 'apology for slavery.' The timing. Why wait until Obama is president to suddenly apologize for slavery? It goes back to the U.S. paying out reparations to the Japanese Americans for WWII internment because of Japan's economic rise. Both things were motivated by other events, and not by a true sense to make up for a historical wrong.
    Where does this Japan's economic rise thing come from as the rationale for reparations for those interned? I've never heard it before and it makes no sense. I mean, really, WTF? Japanese Americans worked for decades to make it happen.

  10. #40
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    Where does this Japan's economic rise thing come from as the rationale for reparations for those interned? I've never heard it before and it makes no sense. I mean, really, WTF? Japanese Americans worked for decades to make it happen.
    The TIMING of the reparations is my rationale. People were pushing for reparations for decades, but the U.S. didn't agree to pay out the reparations until the late 80's, early 90's. The same time when Japan had already become a global economic power, and the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII was still a sore spot in U.S./Japan trade relations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Banshee View Post
    My mother's favorite saying is that people who forget history are doomed to repeat it. I don't think that we should ever forget the atrocities the human race is capable of, but lingering on them instead of learning and moving forward doesn't help us grow, either.
    Exactly.

  11. #41
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    The TIMING of the reparations is my rationale. People were pushing for reparations for decades, but the U.S. didn't agree to pay out the reparations until the late 80's, early 90's. The same time when Japan had already become a global economic power, and the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII was still a sore spot in U.S./Japan trade relations.
    That has nothing to do with it. Please, read up on the legislative history regarding this. Do you think the resolution Congress recently passed regarding slavery was due to Nigeria being the US's #4 source of oil?

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    That has nothing to do with it. Please, read up on the legislative history regarding this. Do you think the resolution Congress recently passed regarding slavery was due to Nigeria being the US's #4 source of oil?
    Actually, I did read the legislation regarding it. And I'm not disputing the history behind it. The legislative history behind it has nothing to do with the U.S. motives. But why don't you continue to believe that a Republican president like Reagan, and the U.S. Congress, would pay out reparations to the Japanese Americans out of the goodness of their heart, and not because of Japan's economic rise and U.S. trade relations. The Easter Bunny and Santa Claus are real, too.

    The resolution Congress passed about slavery was because of Obama. Had he not been president that 'apology' would never have happened, otherwise they would've made it years ago. Because just like the Japanese reparations, the slavery apology was motivated by timing and external events.

  13. #43
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    Actually, I did read the legislation regarding it. And I'm not disputing the history behind it. The legislative history behind it has nothing to do with the U.S. motives. But why don't you continue to believe that a Republican president like Reagan, and the U.S. Congress, would pay out reparations to the Japanese Americans out of the goodness of their heart, and not because of Japan's economic rise and U.S. trade relations. The Easter Bunny and Santa Claus are real, too.

    The resolution Congress passed about slavery was because of Obama. Had he not been president that 'apology' would never have happened, otherwise they would've made it years ago. Because just like the Japanese reparations, the slavery apology was motivated by timing and external events.
    Why the hell would reparations to Japanese Americans affect trade relations with Japan? Japanese Americans aren't exactly seen as Japanese as by the Japanese back in Japan. If you know anything about Japan, you'd know that. And you're timing rationale still makes no sense.

  14. #44
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    Why the hell would reparations to Japanese Americans affect trade relations with Japan? Japanese Americans aren't exactly seen as Japanese as by the Japanese back in Japan. If you know anything about Japan, you'd know that. And you're timing rationale still makes no sense.
    So, your belief that the U.S. paid out reparations for interning Japanese Americans 'just to do the right thing' suddenly makes more sense than timing and trade relations? If you know anything about U.S. history that's not even feasible. The U.S. did far worse to Indians and blacks and didn't see fit to pay out reparations, but they chose to do it for Japanese Americans?

    Well, why didn't the U.S. pay out those reparations to Japanese Americans in the 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's or early 80's? I know the resolution was put forth by a former detainee who was interned as a child. But it was passed in the late 80's and the payments started in the early 90's, which falls right in line with the timing of Japan's economic rise and U.S. trade relations.

  15. #45
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    So, your belief that the U.S. paid out reparations for interning Japanese Americans 'just to do the right thing' suddenly makes more sense than timing and trade relations? If you know anything about U.S. history that's not even feasible. The U.S. did far worse to Indians and blacks and didn't see fit to pay out reparations, but they chose to do it for Japanese Americans?

    Well, why didn't the U.S. pay out those reparations to Japanese Americans in the 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's or early 80's? I know the resolution was put forth by a former detainee who was interned as a child. But it was passed in the late 80's and the payments started in the early 90's, which falls right in line with the timing of Japan's economic rise and U.S. trade relations.
    You really don't know the history of reparations for the Japanese who were interned, do you?

    The Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians wasn't even established until 1980. That was what really got the ball rolling toward reparations. Also, having members of Congress who were interned who helped push the legislation through was probably the biggest factor in getting it passed. The title of the legislation was the "Civil Liberties Act of 1988." Do you think Reagan would veto something like that?

    Reparations for Japanese Americans and Aleutians have nothing to do with what happened to blacks and American Indians. What happened to them was morally repugnant and wrong, wrong, wrong. But it was legal under the law at the time. What happened to those interned was not legal. That is the difference.

    The law was passed in 1988 and afterward identification and location for those who were interned had to be done. That's why the reparation payments didn't start until then. It has nothing to do with Japan's economic status, which has to be the most ridiculous thing I've heard. Japan still has some pretty restrictive trade barriers. They had them back in the 80s when the law was passed. So if your belief is that we did it to appease Japan, well, then, it was a major fail and we got nothing in return. Haven't complained publicly about it either.

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