Sunday, July 09, 2006

Slavery Reparations Gaining Momentum?

I was rather surprised to find this two page article in today's Washington Post:

"Advocates who say black Americans should be compensated for slavery and its Jim Crow aftermath are quietly chalking up victories and gaining momentum.

Fueled by the work of scholars and lawyers, their campaign has morphed in recent years from a fringe-group rallying cry into sophisticated, mainstream movement. Most recently, a pair of churches apologized for their part in the slave trade, and one is studying ways to repay black church members." More

I can see a ton of problems in pursuing this course of action. According to the Wikipedia article Reparations for Slavery the U.S. census doesn't track who is descended from slaves. That means the potential for reparation fraud would be huge. Not to mention the fact that slavery was abolished 140 years ago so there are no former slaves and very few of their children to pay reparations to.
Furthermore it would open the door for reparations to every race,tribe, or ethnicity we've ever wronged. And that's not a short list. And of course once the reparation law suit ball starts rolling we'd start seeing direct descendants of former slave owners sued.

This seems counterproductive to me in many ways and if this snowballs it would increase the level of prejudice and biggotry on a national scale allowing the KKK, Aryan groups, and other hate mongers to profit and greatly expand their membership. Proponents need to do a serious cost vs benefit analysis before going further. After all how many lives are reparations worth?

Articles of Interest:

Nazis Rising