House Holds a Hearing on Slave Reparations

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives held a hearing on slave reparations for the first time in over a decade. The hearing was attended by a massive crowd. During the hearing, Senator and 2020 presidential candidate Cory Booker, actor Danny Glover, and writer Ta-Nehisi Coates testified before the House.

Booker, who was the first to speak, stated during the hearing, “It’s about time we find the common ground and the common purpose to deal with the ugly past and make sure that generations ahead do not have to continue to mark disparities.”

Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates said during the hearing, “I don't think we should rule out cutting checks. There are people who deserve checks. While it's been well-studied, I don't know that Americans quite understand it. At this very point you can at least get a plurality of white Americans who would tell you that the Civil War was about state's rights, with no conversation about state's rights to do what.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made comments against the idea of slave reparations prior to the hearing. “I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago for whom none us currently living are responsible is a good idea,” McConnell stated. “We’ve tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a civil war, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We elected an African-American president.”

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