Walter E. Williams

 The recent phase of the reparations movement contains an interesting twist. Rev. Wayne Perryman, a conservative minister of Mount Calvary Christian Center Church of God in Christ in Seattle, Wash., has filed a lawsuit against the Democratic Party. His lawsuit, filed in United States District Court in Seattle, charges "that because of their racist past practices the Democratic Party should be required to pay African Americans Reparations." Rev. Perryman's brief, citing abundant historical evidence, charges that the past racist policies and practices that were initiated against blacks by the Democratic Party -- were no different than the policies and practices that were initiated by the Nazi Party against the Jews.

 Brian DeBose's Washington Times July 12th article "NAACP to Target Private Business," describing events at the NAACP convention, didn't report on whether the NAACP, and black politicians present, intend to support Rev. Perryman's legal actions against the Democratic Party. What are we to make of corporate CEOs, and their boards of directors, who cave in to the reparations shakedown? What are their motivations? One possibility is that they might fear that a principled stand, telling the reparations hustlers to take a hike, might cost them in terms of bad publicity and sales. The CEOs might guess their stockholders prefer dividends to principle. Another explanation, which makes less sense, is that the CEOs actually feel guilty about their predecessors' ties to slavery more than a century ago. For their guilt, I have a "Certificate of Amnesty and Pardon" at my website that might help them..

 There's a reparations agenda question that I would have liked to ask the mayors of Philadelphia and Chicago, who have laws that require companies, seeking to do business with the city, to do studies determining whether they had ties to slavery. Suppose it's the city's monopoly electric company that refuses to comply. Will the mayors tell them to keep their electricity and work in the dark?

Walter E. Williams

Dr. Williams serves on the faculty of George Mason University as John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics and is the author of 'Race and Economics: How Much Can Be Blamed on Discrimination?' and 'Up from the Projects: An Autobiography.'
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