Reparations for slavery has long been a topic bubbling across sociopolitical spheres. Obviously, nothing has ever come of these discussions—at least not for the descendants of enslaved Africans.
According to the report, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties has scheduled a hearing for next Wednesday, “to examine, through open and constructive discourse, the legacy of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, its continuing impact on the community and the path to restorative justice.”
Next Wednesday also happens to be June 19th, or Juneteenth, the cultural holiday which commemorates emancipation from slavery, a fitting day to discuss this topic.
Ta-Nehisi Coates, who authored the essay “The Case for Reparations” in The Atlantic in 2014 is being called on to testify before the committee.
Activist and actor Danny Glover, known for classics such as The Color Purple and A Rage in Harlem, will also testify, as someone who has called for reparations for years.
As the AP notes, this is not the first time the House has tried to push discussion around reparations.
The wire notes:
Former Democratic Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, the longtime sponsor of House Resolution 40, first proposed the measure calling for a study of reparations in 1989. Conyers reintroduced the bill every session until his resignation in 2017.
Now Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) is pushing the resolution as its new sponsor, introducing it earlier this year and putting her foot down on the hearing next week.
It perhaps also helps that the topic of reparations has become one of the highlights of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary race, with several candidates voicing their support. However, how exactly the descendants of enslaved Africans will be compensated has not exactly been directly addressed. Most candidates have been vague, although many have issued policies meant to address the inequalities that Black people in America still face.