Monday, June 9, 2014
Why we need reparations: because without them, deep, race-based economic inequality will persist
Posted by Kathleen Geier
Recently, Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote a powerful cover essay for The Atlantic making the case for reparations for black people. My response to his essay can be found here. I concur that reparations are a moral and political necessary. Deep, race-based economic inequality is not going away, and in many troubling ways it is getting worse, not better. I agree with Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree's prescription for reparations in the form of a broadly based social democratic agenda that, in Coates' words, “takes racial justice as its mission but includes the poor of all races.” We won't come close to achieving racial equality in this country until structural economic issues are addressed as well.