Redux of repairs! – News from New York Amsterdam
In 2020, when Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation creating the two-year reparations task force, California became the only state to take such a step. At the very beginning, it was clear that such a step would not go smoothly and now we learn that after a vote of 5 to 4, the task force limited state compensation to only descendants of people free and enslaved in the United States in the 19th century, thus rejecting a proposal to include all
Blacks regardless of lineage.
The vote sparked a new debate about who should receive reparations, whether the state of California should be forced to compensate since it was not a slave state, and even if differences are resolved, the money available or a plan to determine how compensation would continue.
It’s a trying and emotional situation, but at least California has started a serious discussion about the issue that could have national repercussions.
This may encourage the federal government to take up the issue; some cities such as Providence, Rhode Island, Evanston, Illinois and Boston have already launched commissions to study the problem.
Hey, where is New York on this quest for reparations that too many people see as a needless mess with no resolution in the immediate future?
But this inactivity should not mean defeat. For example, the other day, President Biden signed into law the Emmett Till bill making lynching a federal crime, a measure that failed time and time again, more than 200 times before it succeeded.
Maybe what’s needed is for the feds and the president to accept reparations, take advantage of the California push. Even so, as has been the case in the past, repairs are a complicated factor with too many things to sort out.
There is nothing new in any of this, although we can applaud the developments on the west coast and wish our own coast would intervene.