An Oregon non-profit just did something the U.S. government refuses to do: it gave out reparations to people of color
In the inaugural Reparations Happy Hour earlier this week, the hosts gave each person of color who attended $10 with no questions asked. With 40 people in attendance, Brown Hope, the non-profit gave out $400 that evening.
“It’s exactly what it sounds like,” Brown Hope founder Cameron Whitten told Raw Story. “What I want to do is end the cycle of exploitation. For Black, brown, indigenous people you face so many barriers, whether it’s tokenization or straight-up poverty.“
According to the News Tribune, Portland is one of the whitest major cities in the U.S. with census data showing that 78 percent of the population is white. As a result, it has a history of strained race relations that go back decades.
Indeed, white people were not allowed at the event, though they could donate money to the cause. Having raised more than $5000 so far, Whitten is planning to have more Reparation Happy Hours in the future.
“With the reparations happy hour, the whole idea is to how do we feel from this trauma of racism?” he told Newsweek. “We talked to folks, we engage folks. They said we want a space for our community, and we said we can do better than that. How about we do some reparations?”
In 2016, the U.N. Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent urged the U.S. government to give reparations to African-American descendants of slavery. Nothing concrete ever came from that recommendation.