Progressives have long called for reparations—payments to blacks for the horrors of slavery. These were routinely dismissed because they’re absurd – those who suffered the injustice of slavery and those who perpetrated it are long dead, and most Americans of every national origin had nothing to do with it.
But the push for reparations truly never was about slavery, it’s about redistribution of wealth and perpetrating the victimhood mentality that keeps people voting for progressives. To think they’d ever stop would be like thinking a heroin addict wouldn’t steal your iPhone if you let them crash on your couch – it’s just not going to happen.
Enter The Atlantic. Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates has brought the issue back to the forefront of progressives’ minds and set a debate raging on MSNBC. Well, as much of a “debate” that can happen when both participants agree on every point.
Coates’ article, “The Case for Reparations: Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole,” lays out a series of damning government policies and actions that directly harmed, if not targeted, black Americans and held them back economically.
The specific claims of Coates have been refuted by people much smarter than I, and I suggest you read the original article and the rebuttals to form your own conclusion. But if progressives are interested in reparations for past wrongs, they should target those who perpetrated them – the Democratic Party.
The Democratic Party was the party of slavery. It gained power from it, profited from it, and fought to keep it.
Jim Crow was the spawn of racist Democrats who, angry they could no longer own slaves, set about creating a series of laws, both on the books and off, to deny blacks the dignity they deserved and their rights as full citizens.
It was Democrats who pioneered “separate but equal,” standing in schoolhouse doors to keep out children who only wanted to learn without having to travel miles to an inferior “black school.”