Beto O’Rourke’s and Marianne Williamson’s Embrace of Reparations Falls Flat

With crackpot ideas such as Medicare for all and the Green New Deal percolating from the Democratic presidential race, it is small wonder that slavery reparations have been lost in the media shuffle. What is surprising is that the most fervent proponents of the idea have been two white, marginal candidates, Beto O’Rourke and Marianne Williamson. The idea is opposed by the overwhelming majority of Americans, but a plurality of Democrats and a majority of African Americans.

Fox News explains.

“Marianne Williamson and Beto O’Rourke wholeheartedly embraced reparations for black Americans during last Tuesday night’s Democratic primary debate — a national wedge issue that, at least in the debate hall in Detroit, Michigan, seemed more like a surefire applause line.

“O’Rourke announced that, as president, he would work to sign Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee’s reparations bill. That legislation, according to Jackson Lee’s office, would ‘examine the institution of slavery in the colonies and the United States from 1619 to the present, and further recommend appropriate remedies.’”

Sen. Corry Booker, D-NJ has pledged to support a Senate version of the bill. Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Ca has given the idea lip service. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass wants Native Americans to be “part of the conversation.” Ironically, Warren has gotten herself into trouble for pretending to be Native American, when she is not.

Proponents of slavery reparations point to the payments former West Germany made to atone for the Nazi Holocaust. The problem with that analogy is that those payments were made when both the perpetrators and victims of that atrocity were still alive. No person who owned slaved or who was a slave is still living.

The mechanics of how slavery reparations would work are also a bit sketchy. How much would the reparations cost? Williamson has stated that it is half a trillion dollars. Who would receive the payments? All African Americans or just those who can prove that they were descended from slaves. Former President Obama, for instance, might not be eligible. His father was born in Africa.

The New York Post reports that a recent Gallup Poll suggests strong opposition to slavery reparations:

“Slightly more than two-thirds of Americans oppose the government paying reparations to African-Americans who are the descendants of slaves, while 29 percent support the compensation, including 73 percent of blacks, a poll released Monday shows.

“Despite the overwhelming opposition to reparations, the Gallup Poll found support has doubled since 2002 when only 14 percent of Americans were in favor of the cash compensation.

“Broken down by political party, 92 percent of Republicans, 65 percent of independents and 47 percent of Democrats say the government should not pay reparations.

“Democrats – at 49 percent – represented the largest political group in favor of the payments, with 32 percent of independents and 5 percent of Republicans.”

What would be the political effects of a reparations program? A recent article in Reason suggests that far from healing the racial divide or leveling the playing field between whites and African Americans, the merest proposal would set a match to a tinder box.

For one thing, because only Democrats are proposing the idea, reparations instantly become a partisan issue. The 2020 presidential election has already become continuous on the subject of race. Any Democratic candidate who tells white Americans that they are guilty because of their “white privilege” is not likely to get a good reception. Sen Kristin Gillibrand, D-New York is pretty sure that she can lecture white, suburban women about why they all share this quality and now must pay up.

The Reason article also suggests that the proposal is likely to result in a lot of argument over who pays, who gets, and how much. Are the recipients going to be evaluated as to how much slavery ancestry they possess? Also, just imagine the arguments about poor whites or people whose ancestors immigrated to America after the Civil War being forced to pay money for a sin that they were demonstrably not guilty of. Also, the idea that Oprah Winfrey and other wealthy, successful African Americans are owed money because their ancestors were held in bondage.

Given these objections, why is the issue cropping up now? The National Review suggests that there is a political motivation that has little to do with social justice. It is an attempt to buy African American and Democratic voters. While the issue would likely sink any candidate who persists in advancing it in the general election, if reparations were to be enacted, they would go on forever and would have an infinite cost, more than enough reason to reject the idea out of hand.

79 thoughts on “Beto O’Rourke’s and Marianne Williamson’s Embrace of Reparations Falls Flat”

  1. guess people don’t realize that the first slave owner was black, his name was Anthony Johnson. So maybe the wealthy blacks can pay the poor blacks. Or have the ppl that approve to pay reparations pay it themselves. I am Japanese, my ancestors lost their properties and placed in camps for the duration of WWII, so will we get the same thing? My ancestors had to start over when they were finally released and realized that the government ‘stole” the properties that they worked and paid for. We were not treated any different than the blacks, we just didn’t cause riots, guess the saying is true, “the squeeky wheels gets the grease.” The dems are trying to buy votes like usual.

  2. The speech Beto O’Rouke gave after the horrible mass shooting in El Paso was ONLY A TO GET A VOTE for HIS ELECTION. The speech was so fake and phony ” NO SINCERITY FOR THESE VICTIMS AND THEIR FAMILY” it was such and embarrassment to the entire world. This could not even fool a child. This was not the time or place to try to get a vote. Shame on O’Rouke

  3. What else can these idiot Democrats come up with now? This is another crazy idea that is simply a ploy to purchase votes. Good God I hope they really go down in flames in the next election!

  4. The ‘damages’ would be the difference between what the life they lived as a slave, and that of the life had they been left alone in Africa. Today’s African Americans, have lived a higher standard of living than Africans, thus no basis for reparations.

  5. This is why he cannot be trusted because he doesn’t remember what he says from one day to the next. He changes his mind only to agree with someone who says something that he wants to get in on before that person gets everyone else’s attention. He is so wish’y washy he strikes me as a person who does not want to be doing what he is doing, but doing so maybe to please someone else. He has a lot of growing up to do in my opinion. Therefore I would never vote for him.

  6. Don’t forget to take in account the generations of Slave descendants who have drawn Public Assistance since they were able to apply for it. This should be deducted from any reparations their GreatGreatGrandParents, qualified them for.

  7. I think I can solve this issue. The people that shall be responsible to pay any reparations to slave descendants, shall be the original slave owners. Period. Problem solved.

  8. I would not vote for any Democrat that pushes socialism or reparations. My family who is white picked cotton just like the slaves did so where are my families reparations? Also, how they treat other people including President Trump.

  9. A black, retired NFL football player testified for the Democrats when they were originally setting up the reparations program. I really like his suggestions and would completely agree to reparations under the conditions he put forth. His suggestion was that reparations should be forgotten and buried, but if some politicians just had to pass reparations laws, he felt it only fair that the entire bill (the dollars set aside for reparation) should be footed entirely by the Democrats. His reasoning, it was Democrats who owned the slaves and kept the slave trade alive. If there is to be a punishment, it should be paid by the Democrats. Propose that bill and watch as reparations fades into memory.

  10. As a small child I grew up with World War II staring at me, as well as at many other children at that time. I think we are owed reparations for the anxiety that we felt every time an airplane flew over head. Also for all of the young white soldiers who were victims of that war, their families are certainly owed reparations!

  11. Maybe Republicans need to understand that there are actually people who are REAL Christians and act on truth, NOT their BASE!
    shock and surprise!

  12. Reparations is not the most stupid thing the democrats have come up with but it’s right up there with the thousands of others. Over 90% of the people never owned slaves. Just have all the slave owners still alive hand everything they own over to all the slaves still alive.

  13. Robert needs to pay reparations to people like my wife and son who are actually Hispanic and for some warped reason he thinks he can appropriate their culture by using a Hispanic nickname basically he is a moron who doesn’t even know his own identity, but I guess he figures that being rich gives him privileges

  14. I will not contribute to paying reparations even if I have to spend time in jail for refusing to contribute to the fund along with my fellow taxpayers. My grandmother and her younger brother we the only 2 born in America after her mother and father brought the family to America from Denmark. They never owned slaves, so I should not have to pay for something that was long after the Civil War. I hope that the lawsuit goes forward and is found to be unconstitutional once people clearly know the truth. Besides, “African-Americans” were not the only slaves because you can see indentured servants who came to America only to find out that they would have to work all their lives for the person that helped pay for their passage. There were many Irish, English, Chinese, and others who were “slaves” and I don’t see any reparations coming their way.

  15. I believe if reparations for slavery are to be made, they should be made to the entire US population, white, black, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, Indian and any other actual citizens, (not illegals). Why? Slavery has cost us all, not just African Americans, a great deal of hurt and pain. Think of all who lost their lives or were mutilated because of the civil war. Think of all the mixed marriages, all the hurt and pain they have endured over the years. I, for one, am extremely hurt being called a racist, even though I have black and Hispanic great grandchildren and love them dearly. Reparations for just one group, for the hurt and pain of an entire nation, would not be fair. Please, don’t bomb my house, pick on, hurt, my wife, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren for my comment, they know nothing of it, so just pick on me.

  16. If Democraps want to pay these reparations then let them pay. I am not from those who held slaves so I should not be made to pay for their actions. My ancestors some came after Slavery was ended and the rest were not even citizens in their own Nation until the 1920’s when women got the vote. So if these IDIOT Democraps want to pay reparations let them use their money not mine or any other tax payers money. With all these 20 or so Democraps are wasting on running for an office they are unfit for they could pool that money and pay what they believe Slavery decedents are owed.

  17. The only People interested in free Money and getting extra Voters are all White Democrats. It is not hard to figure out. Blacks don’t realize that as usual Whites are behind these gimmicks. Like they are in most Racially motivated Stunts. Sad to say Blacks always fall for it. Take California as an example. White Democrats run the State. Highest Taxes, Mass Exodus of People with Money. Poverty is rampant.Time for a Change.

  18. No way am I paying reparations to lazy ass niggers who don’t work for a living. Ain’t gonna pay then to assholes like Oprah either.

  19. Robert O’rourke will do anything to stay in polls. I mean anything, such a fool. Only people that really like him in El Paso are the people he speaks Spanish to.

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