Democratic New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker introduced a bill Monday that would establish a commission to study the impact of slavery on the black community and propose slavery reparations initiatives.
Sen. Booker tweeted in reference to the bill he will be backing in the Senate, saying, “I am proud to introduce legislation that will finally address many of our country’s policies—rooted in a history of slavery and white supremacy—that continue to erode Black communities, perpetuate racism and implicit bias, and widen the racial wealth gap.”
“Senator Spartacus” obviously doesn’t see the irony inherent in a Black U.S. Senator complaining that blacks just can’t get ahead in this country, less than three years after a Black man left the Oval Office. That said, let’s examine his complaint:
Few things “erode Black communities” like the twin scourges of welfare and abortion. Both are practically sacraments to leftists. And both have devastated the nuclear family, which study after study shows is vital to social and economic mobility. The advocacy of abortion in America, in particular, has demonstrably racist origins. As for the welfare legacy of the Great Society, let’s review the thoughts of its architect, Democratic President Lyndon Johnson:
These Negroes, they’re getting pretty uppity these days and that’s a problem for us since they’ve got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we’ve got to do something about this, we’ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.
No amount of monetary compensation can undo the damage that two generations of government paternalism has caused the Black community. Only by leaving Uncle Sam’s plantation and its slave mentality of perpetual victimhood, and taking personal ownership of their community’s fate, is there any chance for improvement. (The same is true for all Americans, not just Blacks.) Reparations are the exact opposite of that. It’s “enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.” Of course, it’s good for buying votes, though, which is the real point.
At the same time, reparations represent an injustice to the rest of Americans. Inevitably, it will open the door for demands by the Native Americans, Hawaiians, the Chinese and others, each with their own legitimate historical grievances. The fabric of our society will become even more frayed as each group jostles for its share of the loot.
And where will that loot come from? Largely from the White Devils, of course. After all, we pale skins are the root of all evil — our college professors told us so. Sarcasm aside, I’m the first in my family history ever to go to college. My ancestors were hardscrabble, not wealthy, and none ever owned slaves, even though they were eeeeeeeevil Southerners. It wasn’t my white skin that got me through college. It was my parents ensuring I made use of my high school education, and instilling the work ethic that allowed me to work and go to school at the same time. If he had any sense, Spartacus would see why I’m less than enthused at the prospect of being taxed to pay for others’ historical sins. Apparently to the Democrats, I’m a “deplorable,” a “bitter clinger,” and a cash cow for redistribution schemes. I wonder why they’re having a hard time connecting with my demographic these days.
We need a different vision if this country is to survive, a century and a half after it nearly tore itself apart. (Today, by the way, is the anniversary of the effective end of that cataclysm.) I’m reminded of a line from the movie Kingdom of Heaven:
“We fight over an offense we did not give against those who were not alive to be offended.”
We are at a crossroads. Either we acknowledge our shared history — good and bad — has led all Americans to where we are now, which is a place of privilege beyond compare to most of the world’s population. Or we begin fighting over the scraps of that heritage, and in the process tear apart what remains of it. We can no longer afford would-be leaders who use grievance-mongering for personal advancement (I’m looking at you, Southern Poverty Law Center).
Which is why I’ll say this: there is one form of reparation I would support, and one only. The original offense of the slavers was to forcefully remove Africans from their home and transport them to the Americas. If any slave’s descendants truly believe this country is irreparably unjust to them, I support funding a one-way ticket to whatever African country they choose. I don’t expect a mad clamor to take up such an offer, however. Anyone with eyes can see that even the poorest of families in the most violent of Democratic-run cities like Chicago or Baltimore still has more opportunity and more to be thankful for than the vast majority of their distant relatives overseas. Deep down, Senator Spartacus and his ilk know it.
And that, I submit, is reparations enough. If it isn’t, by all means book the flight, bill Uncle Sam, and leave your U.S. passport on the way out the door.