For years when I would hear someone suggest people who descended from slaves in this country should be given reparations for the wrongs done to their ancestors I would almost immediately dismiss the idea. No one alive today has been legally a slave in this country. And no one alive today has legally been a slave owner in this country. So who and why should anyone alive today be responsible for something they didn’t do and who should receive compensation for a wrong they did not suffer?
I recently saw the error of my ways. I reached a state of enlightenment on my own. I am now in partial agreement with those who are demanding reparations for the terrible injustice inflicted upon so many people by legal slavery so many years ago.
With this blog post perhaps I can convince more people to see the light and spread the word of how we can deliver a small measure of belated justice. Please, hear me out on this. It’s important.
As I said in the opening paragraph the problem I initially saw with reparations is that no one alive today was alive when the wrongs occurred. But I now see that the descendants of those who were forcibly brought here would have had a much different life if their ancestors had not been brought here. Therefore if the descendants of people forcibly brought here choose to live their life in the land where their ancestors were taken from then I can see the justice in providing them a one-way ticket to their ancestral homeland on the condition they not return except for occasional visits.
With that part of the issue settled we still have the question of how to pay for this transportation. I think I have that issue figured out too.
It is my belief that there are some descendants of slaves who consider themselves fortunate that they were born in this country and are free citizens here rather than living in the land of their ancestors. Therefore, I propose these people pay the price of a single one-way ticket to a fund to send those who wish to escape this country back to their homeland.
If there are insufficient funds to send everyone desirous of returning then a GoFundMe account should be easily able to make up the difference. I know that I would pay a fair amount to such a fund just to get people to, once and for all time, stop whining about reparations. And I’m sure a lot of other people would too. I don’t think there would be any problems getting sufficient funding to sent all those people back to their homeland.
If, on the other hand, there ends up being an excess of funds in the account the funds should go to the descendants of the slave owners*. The reasoning for this is that the people grateful to be here rather than in their ancestral land owe a debt, which they have never paid for being here. It’s true that the descendants of the slave owners didn’t pay the price of bringing current wrongful residents here, but it makes as much or more sense than the original version of reparations.
There is one more wrinkle that I can see worth ironing out. Many of the descendants of wrongful residents are also descendants of people who voluntarily migrated here. I propose their contribution to the fund or ticket price for their return, whichever they chose, be prorated according to the percentage of DNA they have which traces back to the ancestral homeland of the slaves.
Please share and help heal the wounds of that terrible institution of legal slavery once and for all.
* To the best of my knowledge none of my ancestors were slave owners so I can’t see that I’m furthering my own self-interest here.