The Problem With Reparations

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As the 21st century advances, the movement in the Western world to atone for and redress injustices committed in previous centuries toward members of particular racial or ethnic groups continues apace. The most prominent such movement in present-day America is the demand for “reparations” for slavery – an initiative which has gained fresh attention following the release of a proposed plan for $5 million payments to black residents in San Francisco. The payments, notably, would be made without regard to whether the recipients are descendants from those who were enslaved prior to 1865 or are descendants of subsequent black immigrants (or immigrated here themselves).

The proposal, unveiled by the San Francisco African American Advisory Committee, calls for the elimination of personal debt and tax burdens, a guaranteed annual income of at least $97,000 for the next 250 years, and homes in the …

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