The United States House of Representatives is poised to apologize to African Americans for Slavery.

A historical moment is at hand. The House of Representatives is poised today to apologize to African Americans for slavery, Jim Crow and the after affects of that institution that we, as a nation, still suffer from today.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/07/29/house.slavery/index.html

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and this is the best your Congress can do?

Apologize for something that ended before ANY of us or our parents are old enough to remember?

No wonder Congress HAS LOWER POLL NUMBERS THAN BUSH.

http://www.reuters.com/article/politicsNews/idUSN1844140220070919?feedTy...

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

My grandfather came to this country over a hundred years ago and was discriminated against because he couldn't speak English and had foreign ways. I demand to be compensated for his trauma that had an indirect impact on his children and grandchildren. My life might have been much different otherwise. A cool million will do nicely, thank you very much. [smiley face emoticon]

My family came to America in the early 1900's through Ellis Island.

DON'T APOLOGIZE ON MY BEHALF. My family wasn't even here back then.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

I think it's a great gesture. I hope someday racism will die. I doubt it will, but it's nice to dream.

Did "we" ever issue a formal apology to the Native Americans for their near genocide?
I know it's been attempted by a few in the House and Senate.

http://www.unitednativeamerica.com/issues/Native_apology.html#top

From the article: The resolution does not address the controversial issue of reparations.

So which would those people rather have? An apology or a bundle of money?

This is absolute crap. Out of all the problems in the US, the House takes time to dither about public apologies for something that ceased one hundred and forty three years ago, the the US fought a civil war over and that cost over 600,000 lives.

I want reparations for my ancestors who suffered in the civil war.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

How valid would an apology be if those doing the apologizing were not responsible for what they're apologizing for? How valid would an apology be if the people being apologized to have not be wronged?

People don't normally apologize for something somebody else did. It doesn't do any good. The people that should have apologized are dead and it's too late. I believe that they have already received their just rewards. Those who are entitled to an apology also died a long time ago..

As citizens, our concern should not be about a legislative body apologizing for the wrongs of others, rather it should be about the wrongs that they are responsible for right now and capable of correcting right now.

Slavery was a horrible thing in this country, but what about another form of slavery that our government seeks to impose on its citizens--that of enslavement to the welfare system and social programs?

Bravo jayott, comparing slavery to paying taxes. Straight outta Rush's handbook. I don't know why all you cranks are getting jazzed up about this. We basically just GAVE AWAY our 4th amendment rights this month, and you people are getting pissed over this. Pay attention people.

Pink Slip

If you are going to argue intelligently, at least you could restate my argument fairly and accurately. I did not compare slavery to paying taxes.

The comparison I did make was 1.) people apologizing for something they are not responsible for to people who have never been owned by anyone, 2.)to the wrongs the House of Reps. is in fact responsible for and to whom it has wronged.

Elsewhere, I've argued about the taking away of our rights. There I have argued that the U.S. was a much freer county 10, 20, 50, years ago than it is now. I've asked the question at the present rate of the growth of government i.e. its bans, regulations, fees, fines, and taxes, and the redistribution of wealth whether we are headed towards tyranny or anarchy.

I think for myself, I don't need Rush's "handbook" nor anyone else's--my mistakes demonstrate that. I hope that everyone else can do the same.

Don't back away from your comments. You said--

"what about another form of slavery that our government seeks to impose on its citizens--that of enslavement to the welfare system and social programs?"

What's your beef with the "welfare system and social programs", if not the fact that you pay the taxes? You don't like the names of the programs? What part of welfare/social programs do you consider "slavery", jayott? Are you not free to participate in our democratic system to elect representatives that will enact or repeal programs you do/do not like? Are you not free to petition the gov't for a redress of grievances? If all else fails, are you not free to move to another country? Yes, of course you are. Did African-Americans have these options when they were ACTUALLY enslaved?

Tell me again, jayott, how welfare/social programs are slavery? I find it hard to believe you weren't comparing these programs to actual slavery, since this thread is about slavery and you subsequently asked about "another form of slavery".

Pink Slip

Native Americans & Japanese-Americans were treated horribly, as were the Irish & others. I don't know if any Irish people were hung from trees, so in that, I guess African-Americans 'win'. Few people would argue that the blacks were mistreated during that time of history. But how can somebody (Congress) apologize for something it's not guilty of doing? Especially something that was done over 140 years ago. Done by & to people they (Congress) doesnt even know? This apology means nothing - it's token empty words, hoping to make blacks feel good. How will this benefit any blacks alive today? Quite frankly, I'd think that African-Americans (geez, I hate hypenated 'Americans' - we are all just "Americans") would be offended at such an empty, meaningless apology. But if it makes them feel better, then the apology's served it's purpose (?).

Having said that, then if they do it for African-Americans, then they damned well better do it for Japanese-Americans as well - citizens who were herded into concentration type camps here in the USA - as a "precaution" - typecasting at it's extreme. Native-Americans have suffered as a race enormously.
************************************
Just a few 'blips' of horrors in the Native-American history (I apologise for it's length, but this is a subject that doesn't get enough attention as far as I'm concerned. Not space enough to go into the nasty treatments of the Irish.)-

Mount Rushmore is controversial among Native Americans because the United States seized the area from the Lakota tribe after the Black Hills War in 1876–77. The Treaty of Fort Laramie from 1868 had previously granted the Black Hills to the Lakota in perpetuity. The Lakota consider the hills sacred, although historians believe the Lakota also gained control of the hills by force, displacing the Cheyenne in 1776.
********************************************
The Indian (was thought) as less than human and worthy only of extermination. We did shoot down defenseless men, and women and children at places like Camp Grant, Sand Creek, and Wounded Knee. We did feed strychnine to red warriors. We did set whole villages of people out naked to freeze in the iron cold of Montana winters. And we did confine thousands in what amounted to concentration camps. ”
— Wellman- The Indian Wars of the West, 1934[28]
***************************************
Military defeat, cultural pressure, confinement on reservations, forced cultural assimilation, outlawing of native languages and culture, termination policies of the 1950s and 1960s and earlier, slavery and poverty, have had deleterious effects on Native Americans' mental and physical health. Contemporary health problems suffered disproportionately include alcoholism, heart disease, diabetes, and suicide.
************************************
As recently as the 1970s, the Bureau of Indian Affairs was still actively pursuing a policy of "assimilation", dating at least to the Indian Citizenship Act of 1924. The goal of assimilation—plainly stated early on—was to eliminate the reservations and steer Native Americans into mainstream U.S. culture. In July 2000 the Washington state Republican Party adopted a resolution of termination for tribal governments. As of 2004, there are still claims of theft of Native American land for the coal and uranium it contains.........
********************************
Some historians estimate that up to 80% of some Native populations died due to European diseases after first contact (they were given Smallpox infested blankets).

*******************************
Trail Of Tears - Nearly 15,000 Choctaws made the move to what would be called Indian Territory and then later Oklahoma. About 2,500–6,000 died along the trail of tears. Approximately 5,000–6,000 Choctaws remained in Mississippi in 1831 after the initial removal efforts.The Choctaws who chose to remain in newly formed Mississippi were subject to legal conflict, harassment, and intimidation. The Choctaws "have had our habitations torn down and burned, our fences destroyed, cattle turned into our fields and we ourselves have been scourged, manacled, fettered and otherwise personally abused, until by such treatment some of our best men have died."
*********************************
On December 29, Lakota Ghost Dancers were on their way through the badlands toward Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. James W. Forsyth and 7th Cavalry Regiment intercepted the dancers and ordered them to hand over their weapons. A search was ordered, the soldiers barged in the tipi camp, frightening the Indian woman and children, and overturning bedding in their quest of weapons, and, possibly, for souvenirs. They returned with 38 old firearms and some axes. It became clear that some of the Indians were hiding weapons under their blankets. A shot was fired, prompting a call for the Cavalry to fire. At first, the struggle was fought at close range, this killed or wounded fully half of the Indian men before they had a chance to get off a shot in retaliation. At this, some of the Indians produced the rifles they had been hiding for self-defense and opened fire on the soldiers. With no cover, and with many of the Sioux unarmed, this phase of the fighting lasted a few minutes at most. While the Indian warriors and soldiers were shooting it out at close range, the Hotchkiss guns opened fire, not on the braves, but on the tipi camp full of women and children. The Indian women fled screaming as shells tracked them across the snow. The officers had lost all control of their men by this time. Some of the soldiers fanned out to run across the battlefield and finish off wounded Indians. Others leapt onto their horses and pursued the Lakota who sought to escape fire from the troops and chased them for miles across the prairies. By the end of the fighting, which lasted less than an hour, at least 150 Lakota had been killed and 50 wounded. Army casualties numbered 25 dead and 39 wounded.
************************************
Japanese American internment refers to the forcible relocation and internment of approximately 110,000 Japanese nationals and Japanese Americans to housing facilities called "War Relocation Camps", in the wake of Imperial Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor. The internment of Japanese Americans was effected unequally throughout the United States. Japanese Americans residing on the West Coast of the United States were all interned, whereas in Hawaii, where over 150,000 Japanese Americans comprised nearly a third of that territory's population, an additional 1,200 to 1,800 Japanese Americans were interned. Of those interned, 62 percent were United States citizens.

(In 1988, Congress passed and President Ronald Reagan signed legislation which apologized for the internment on behalf of the U.S. government. )

So if/when they make this apology will it be enough to get over it and move on?

 I agree with the others that our legislature has other things they should be doing besides apologizing for something they didn't do to people it wasn't done to.

I wonder when the federal government is going to apologize to the Confederate states for abusing their natural right to secede from the USA.

GZ, that is an excellent point. I won't go into this here, but the United States is today thought of as a singular noun. It used to be a plural (understanding that power belonged to the states and not to the centralized power in Washington)... and seccession, before the Civil War, was considered to be a right of any state. Abe Lincoln screwed that up and gave us what we have today!

and read the resolution? A lot of the questions would be answered if you click on the link. It would be revealed that the apology is not only for slavery but also for " the effects of slavery and Jim Crow that are still present today."

The question about other groups that have been apologized to are also included in the link.

I never visualized that this day would ever come. I guess we are moving forward as a country. While I was not a slave, my parents weren't slaves, my grandparents were a generation removed from slavery and my great grandparents were slaves. I find this gesture on the part of the federal government to be the morally right thing to do.

I don't need to, because:

1. No one alive today was a slave (i.e. there are no living victims).
2. No one alive today enslaved any of those slaves (i.e. there are no living victimizers).
3. Jim Crow laws were state issues, which the federal government isn't responsible for.

Slavery was a great cultural wrong that took a long time to overcome. Of course, we shouldn't have had the Dark Ages either, and the burning of the Library of Alexandria, so there you go about historical timings of great injustices.

Our Congress really needs to spend time addressing the huge body of law in the nation that makes EVERYONE OF US a criminal at some point or another. Too many laws equals too little justice. The Congress should be removing 10 laws for each new one they create. Now, THAT would produce the greatest effect of justice for anyone who can ever make a claim that they are under any lingering effects of slavery.

...the New Deal, the Great Society, 70+ years of creeping socialism, and their complicity in the destruction of the minority family at the hands of nanny state government? While we're at it, they should apologize for the Fed and printing-press monetary policy, a failure to defend our sovereignty at the border, the security of social security lie, confiscatory taxation, trillion dollar bailouts of the reckless and stupid, and a general erosion of the freedoms granted by the Creator and affirmed in our Declaration and Constitution. And how 'bout putting some teeth into that apology by repealing, revoking, reducing, eliminating all the crap begat by same?

No, they'll just navel gaze on slavery and carbon credits, and keep the printing press running....

Hari "Raven" Seldon
"Putting the psycho in history since 0 F.E."

Hari "Raven" Seldon
"Putting the psycho in history since 0 F.E."

Don't forget supply-side economics, Milton Friedman, the military-industrial complex, union-busting, torture, invading Iraq, corporate personhood, defining money as "speech", socialism for the rich, the religious right, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W Bush, consolidated media, and Caddyshack II.

Pink Slip

seldom - add to that, the long list of people who were imprisoned, often for decades - only to be proven with DNA they were innocent (and get the damned felonies removed from their records & compensation made). The Blade just ran an article about how there's been a big ass mess with DNA testing gone wrong. jayott, GZ, wonder & seldom said it better than I could have. We all think slavery was a horrible part of history - the same can be said about the icky residue of racism that still saturated this country for generations after. I'm not suggesting that there isn't still some racism going on - of course there is, unfortunately. If this apology from Congress makes African-Americans feel good - then so be it. But I fail to see what it really will accomplish.

Others said it better than I can - Congress should be working to fight the wrongs & fix the current messes, before this country is flushed completely down the toilet. This country did have more freedoms even 10 years ago. It no longer resembles the country my children grew up in & it scares hell out of me. Our country is in some serious shit - in many ways - and Congress & the govt. should be focusing on saving the future of this country, rather than dwell on empty apologies for historical events that occurred over 100 years ago.

I don't claim to know how much time Congress has invested in this apology - I'm sure there were meetings. But the time could have been better spent on more urgent matters. (Who pays the salaries of Congress? Wonder how much money in salaries was spent to come up with the need for this apology?) A Congressional apology for slavery is not going to make a person stop being a racist. And sadly, there will probably always be those who are racists. My grandmother was a terrible racist - not just about blacks, but about the Polish, Romanians, Mexicans, Asians, Native-Americans - she was afraid & racist of anybody she was unfamiliar with - a sign of her era, how she was raised. She got better as she got older - took a lot of talking to her, but she did, until she died at 97 and had befriended a black male intern (she also spent her life fearful of men). That was a major turning point for her - too little, too late. Hopefully some day, children will grow up to not even know what racism is, much less experience it's ugliness. But an apology from Congress isn't going to make that happen - only less ignorant parents.

Perhaps if the country, us all, learned from our past and used the lessons of the past, as in what has worked and what has not, maybe we would not be repeating the same plans and actions, over and over again.

Right now, regime change is on the mind of many.

We did that in Iran, installed a despotic leader who was a friend and ally of the U.S.

We have a pattern of doing the same things, in the hope that someday, we will get it right across the world, when we cannot get it right at home.

Australia has apologized for the treatment of the aboriginal people, for the centuries of abuse, that continues to this day.

The U.S. had a policy of religious and cultural discrimination against the people who were on this land and still are here with us.

Some remember their grandparents telling them of the slaughters and massacres from coast to coast.

Many are still not free to worship the way that their ancestors have for generations.

The apology is but one step forward with many more steps needed.

Lazy people who didn't want to do the work themselves, kidnapped people from another country thousands of miles away and forces them and their decedents to work for free for 400 years, and, commit rape, forced homosexual acts, beat them unmercifully, .buy and sell their children like cattle. To add insult to injury this country terrorized the ex-slaves and their decedents by continuing to beat them, lynch them and financially cripple them as much as we could from December 18, 1865 to present day. All this has been done to them for simple acts such as looking at a white woman, stealing a watermelon, owning a piano, earning medals in wars, refusing to allow a white man from having sex with the Black man's wife, saving a white man's life and telling people about it. Yeah, it isn't our fault, but it is the County's fault. Last time I checked we all live in this Country. By the way we should get rid.of modern day slavery as well. To this day we as Americans refuse to recognize that the slaves and their descendants built this country on their labor and sweat and have been and continue to be tremendous contributors in science, medicine, education, entertainment, sports, the arts,etc. African Americans have helped White Americans kill native Americans, Germans, Italians, Japanese, Vietnamese, Iraqis, Afghans, Chinese, and other people during times of war.

The Country needs to stop the discrimination. The Country can start by apologizing.

Slavery was a full-blown commercial enterprise in early America. Sailing the Atlantic could hardly be called lazy. Also, those plantations needed the labor to run. Where's the laziness to it?

By the same metric, modern farmers are "lazy" when they get a combine or tractor. "Why don't they just do the work themselves?" Because they can't run their farms with their labor alone.

Humans have been using intensive labor (forced or otherwise) for many years. Our own government takes 40% of the working man's income each year ... yet we don't dare call HIM a slave, right? No, he's a TAXPAYER. Some difference.

Well put. Excellent post lauralbloom. Thank you!

is that the apology from the federal government is a giant leap to begin the healing process for us in brown skin who are the progeny of slaves. Others may see it as taking something away from them. Whites may see it as something not needed for them.

I see it as a symbol that America is on the right path to overcome the destruction of living in one country, two people. A house divided cannot survive. We do live in a divided house.

To me this is a first step in the process to meld this country. It may take another 100 years to get to the next step. But for me this is an historical moment and I can say, on this day in my lifetime the government to which I have paid taxes to all of my life has acknowledge a horrific practice that destroyed my people and that is good enough for me.

I keep hearing this "next step" here on this thread. Pray tell, what "next step" needs to be taken?

that no subject brings out the worst in people as does the topic of race and race relations in regards to the history of this country.

I'm not all that thrilled with purely symbolic gestures and an convinced this will do nothing, zero, to improve relations between blacks and whites or any other group.

On the other hand, this country has already, officially, apologized to Native Americans and to Japanese-Americans for their treatment during WWII. So, what's another empty, bascially meaningless gesture?

But Is it going to improve the ever-worsening economic urban blight, the shoddy state of our inner-city public schools? The fact that so many of today's black childen grow into adulthood minus a real, functioning father in their lives? No, no and no.

On the other hand, we have some of Swampbubbles' finest teetering on justiying slave labor because of the demanding needs of land owners to maintain their economic enterprises. OK, that makes it so much more tolerable, just like it was once perfectly acceptable to use pre-teen children in the labor force for pennies a day and the Nazis to work tens of thousands (they simply gassed or starved the other eight mil or so) of Jews to death in their slave camps. It was an economic requirement, don't you know? The masters weren't lazy., they were just doing....what they had to do!

Want to show where race relations really are in this country? There's a person of color on the ballot (or will be) as his party's official representative as candidate for President of the United States. Either vote for him or don't vote for him, not based on his skin color, but on his ideas and platforms for changing this nation for the better versus those of his opponent. An honest participation in this process is far more meaningful than any apology for past transgressions from the Congressional floor.

While slavery was legal, the owners of plantations and farms could make use of slave labor. Period. There's no justifying it. It's just a statement of fact.

The problem comes when people imagine retroactively that there was something wrong with it at the time. It was legal, and slavery then had a strong cultural component. Africans did most of the selling of slaves, too.

Let's not re-write history to suit our present culture. We can't have slavery today, and I'd physically fight to secure the rights of Humans to not be enslaved. But over 200 years ago, it was perfectly fine for many cultures to do it. And they did. It was normal ... and all "normal" has a time and place.

If you're REALLY that set against slavery, then let's have your opinion on things like 40% of the working man's income being taken by government. Let's hear your opinion on property taxes that ensure you will rent your own property all your life. LET'S HEAR IT!

of our perceived rate of over-taxation to the social-economic system of unfree labor under which certain persons are deprived of personal freedom and compelled to work as property of another is a fucking abomination.

Spouting off on what happened to be 'legal' at the time is a pathetically lame excuse not to condem such past practices just as I believe an official 'apology' from our government now does nothing of substance to rectify those abhorrent practices.

Nowadays it's perfectly 'legal' to be taxed at our current rate, no matter how hard it may be for many to stomache, and since you're all about black/white legal standards appropriate to their time in history perhaps you'll simply have to wait a couple hundred years for an official statement of apology from our governement pertinent to those tax rates.

your comparison..of our perceived rate of over-taxation to the social-economic system of unfree labor under which certain persons are deprived of personal freedom and compelled to work as property of another is a fucking abomination.

Right on McCaskey. I find it ironic for some folks to use this thread to complain about "property taxes", when actual slavery is about "property" of a different sort---a most heinous violation of natural rights. What's next, comparing the state sales tax to the Holocaust?

Pink Slip

Slavery being legal did not make it right.
Slavery is wrong - period.
To quote the cliche "Two wrongs don't make a right".
Buying slaves (no matter who is selling them) is wrong. That would make you an Accessory to the moral crime of enslavement.

I think I can speak for all of us here when I say that "we get it" when it comes to being slaves to the government with our taxes, but please stop comparing it to the horrific reality of human slavery. I wonder how anyone could be as insensitive as you have portrayed yourself to be on this issue.

There's a difference between feeling guilty over the treatment of African Americans in our history, and feeling COMPASSION. I don't feel guilt since I didn't do it, nor did my family's ancestors, but I do feel a tremendous amount of compassion for the suffering endured by my African American friends' ancestors and the effects that have rippled through time to present day.

I get so tired of hearing people say, "get over it...it happened over 140 years ago...not my fault..." . How does one "get over it"? How do you deal with the reality that hundreds or thousands of your ancestral family members endured beatings, starvation, rape, murder, unimaginable cruelty and discrimination, sickness with no real medical treatment, and worst of all - hopelessness at the hands of others based solely on their skin color? I can only imagine how painful a burden that is to carry.

Allegedly Obama has said this about the statement:

«[The] U.S. government must offer deeds, not just words[.]»

What does he mean by that? What "deeds" are pending? This sounds in line with Prnhrt's "next step". What is that next step?

Note well that no one alive today was a slave, or kept slaves. Slavery in the USA is at least 5 generations in the past (assuming 3 to 4 generations per century).

Note further that I come from a line of poor Whites out of Tiffin, then rural Pennsylvania. What legacy am I lingering under? What apology does the government owe me for keeping my Appalachian ancestors poor in preference to the old colonial wealth in "New Amsterdam", Boston, and other East Coast urban areas?

I don't think anybody said that they are REALLY set against slavery.

Doesn't the taxes go to maintain our roads and bridges, pay for the armed forces and the health care and retirement benefits of those that have served and are serving.

Taxes pay for the Space Program, the Defense Department and so on.

What the working man be able to fund the repair of a street or bridge, if given the taxes back?

I can't even believe what I'm hearing from you all.

FORTY PERCENT. If you only harvested 5 apples this year, the government would take TWO of them. The government is taking a huge slice off your hides -- heck, more like an arm, a leg, and most of the meat along that side -- and you're somehow applauding what it buys you? IT DIDN'T BUY YOUR ECONOMIC FREEDOM FROM YOUR GOVERNMENT.

I wonder how many slaves in early America so looked forward to their enslavement, as you people do yours?

Any government that requires so much of your wealth, each year you labor, is by definition an INVALID government, which should be overthrown. At the very least, all the representatives sent to One Government Center, Columbus and Washington DC should be saying the same thing:

"Get your fucking hands out of our pockets!"

Have any of you actually READ the Declaration of Independence? You're blatantly countering its assertions. The Declaration charged King George with forcing the people of the continent to quarter British soldiers, hence shouldering the costs thereof ... yet you're TAXED to maintain one of the largest militaries in the world, over and above the militia -- AND YOU ACTUALLY DON'T SEE THE PARALLEL?!?!

I knew that lessons in civics and a clear understanding of the formation of the United States of America were sadly lacking ... but come ON, people! You're living repudiations of the very foundation of this nation.

Over on the thread entitled 'Who qualifies for mortgage help and how to get it' you post a quote from Peter Schiff under the heading 'Peter Schiff says it better':

"The government doesn't have the balls to raise taxes. It's going to print the money. It's going to destroy the currency," he says.

And yet on here you're a latter-day, over-taxed Kunta Kinte, standing shackled and shoeless on the town-square auction block, waiting to be purchased by a new master.

Which office are you running for where evidently you'll say anything to get elected?

:

No denying that.

So the beef with the tax amount, is the military?

Didn't someone, oh so many years ago, warn about the military complex?

The American public wants to feel safe and secure and to do that the protection of the nation is imperative, we are told.

To do that, we are told, we need a strong military, we are told.

Looks like repeating the same thing, ad nasueam has worked.

The direction in which you have turned this topic has NOTHING to do with the original story posted. PLEASE start your own thread if you want to rant and rave about TAXES.
Thank you.

Grrrr.

Actually, taxes are relevant.

The House of Reps apologizes for wrongs it did not commit. The House of Reps apologizes to people who have not been wronged, yet the House of Reps. squanders our tax dollars.

Why don't they apologize for wasting tax dollars?

Since they are in such a mood to apologize during this presidential election year, why not be consistent and apologize for other historical events they had no control over?

Why don't they apologize for Prohibition which gave rise to criminals such as Al Capone who ordered the Valentine's Day Massacre?

Suppose Mrs. Finkbeiner apologized for the wrongs of her husband, would it do any good or would that just be a "step in the right direction"? Will an apology recover any of the taxpayers dollars wasted on bike paths, lights, and flowers?

If anyone should apologize it is the people who have done the wrong not those who try to vicariously atone for the sins of their forefathers.

I asked a question, that's all.

The House has put forth an apology for the treatment of people who were denied the same basic rights as everyone else by the government, as in the government enacted policies that denied rights to others and continues to do the same with regards to the religious freedoms of indigenous people of this land.

GZ, I think you're confusing slavery with oppression. The working class is oppressed and to a large degree controlled by taxation at all levels of government, but we are not enslaved. To be a slave is to have your inalienable rights, as enumerated in the Bill Of Rights, not just denied but declared non-existent. Slaves had no more rights than a wastebasket, a horse or a mule. Shoot a slave and it became a civil matter, destruction of property. Slaves had fewer rights than women, who weren't allowed to own property or vote.

Those days are behind us. Whatever happened, happened. If, in its infinite wisdom, the Federal government decides to issue a posthumous apology to all those who were enslaved in the United States, that's fine. Just make sure that the apology includes a caveat stating that no reparations to the families of those slaves will ever be paid. Never, under any circumstances will the US government, Federal, State or Local, pay any money at all by way of reparation in any of its forms.

That should make everyone equally unhappy.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

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