Newsom creates Black slavery ‘reparations’ board
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed a bill that will create a task force to study state reparation payments to Black Americans, 155 years after the end of the Civil War effectively ended slavery in the United States.
“AB 3121 establishes a nine-member task force to inform Californians about slavery and explore ways the state might provide reparations,” says a statement by the Governor’s office.
In 2019, an Associated Press poll found that only 29 percent of Americans supported cash payments or other reparations over slavery, with the results skewed along racial lines.
Seventy-four percent of Black Americans favored reparations, while 85 percent of white Americans opposed reparations.
The George Floyd protests, ironically, have seemed to have weakened support for reparations.
“According to Reuters/Ipsos polls this month, only one in five respondents [or 20 percent] agreed the United States should use ‘taxpayer money to pay damages to descendants of enslaved people in the United States,’” reported Reuters in June 2020.
But as with many Democrat ideas, California likes to live on the bleeding edge.
“California has historically led the country on civil rights, yet we have not come to terms with our state’s ugly past that allowed slaveholding within our borders and returned escaped slaves to their masters,” said Assemblymember Shirley Weber (D), the chief sponsor of the bill.
In California, slavery was never legal at any time under the United States.
“As a nation, we can only truly thrive when every one of us has the opportunity to thrive. Our painful history of slavery has evolved into structural racism and bias built into and permeating throughout our democratic and economic institutions,” said Newsom.
In the statement, Newsom also pointed out the previous efforts he has made in civil rights by “formally apologizing to California Native Americans for the exploitation and violence our predecessors inflicted upon them,” and a ban on the death penalty that “is unfairly applied to people of color, people with mental disabilities and people who cannot afford costly legal representation.”
California formally apologized earlier this year for the mass internment of Japanese during World War II by then-President Franklin Roosevelt.
One proponent of reparations, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), told Reuters that she favors reparations because all wealth in America ultimately came from Black slavery.
“Doubters may not have had slaves yesterday, or a decade ago or 100 years ago, but any wealth they hold or expect to gain only exists because of the institution of slavery,” Jackson Lee told Reuters.
But Burgess Owens, a Republican candidate for Congress from Utah, who is Black, said that he objected to paying people money based on skin color.
“I’m not racist and think it’s an insult for someone to pay me or anyone else strictly based on the color of their skin,” Owens said.
“Those who say they care about slavery should be leading the charge to save the 30 million men, women and children enslaved today around the world” by sex trafficking and other evils, said Owens according to Reuters.
PHOTO: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
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