After the horrific shooting that killed nine African Americans at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, in Charleston, South Carolina on June 17th, 2015, the country came face to face with a terrorist consumed by racial hate. Dylann Roof, the armed gunman was spotted and brought into custody (alive) less than 24-hours after the massacre.
Since the incident the media has been on a world wind trying to understand why Dylann Roof did it? Everything from his clothes to his own words has explained why he did it because he is a racist that believes in white supremacy.
Shortly, the answer to racism in American began to be a nationwide push to bring down all Confederate flags. Really?? Don’t get me wrong, I understand the history and I even applaud the efforts to have the Confederate flag put down, but I cannot help but to feel a little bothered. Especially, with the issue of racism having the national spotlight, and we have the ears of our lawmakers. Is our only response to addressing Racism in America is to remove the symbolic confederate flag?
What will that do for us once the Confederate flag comes down?
Will we feel any less oppressed without the Confederate flag?
I think this moment regarding race requires a real demand. If we are talking about racism in America, we must talk about REPARATIONS.
The fact that white supremacy has contributed to the suppression of just the idea of reparations and has even gone so far to convince some African Americans that we don’t deserve it, is sickening. If Native Americans and Jewish people can be compensated for the wrongs committed against their race, than so can we.
Just because we have been delayed on what is owed to us it, does not mean America gets and out to bypass our pains and struggles.
Reparations do not necessarily have to be monetary. I have heard proposals made by local radio host to provide reparations in the form of tax exemptions for all descendents of slaves for a set amount of years equivalent to our ancestors’ years in bondage.
I propose: All people who are descendents of African Slaves should receive free admission to any State University and or Co-op College. Also, descendents of African slaves who have current student loans should have their debts waived.
If you think about how our ancestors were stolen from their native land and forced into this foreign country, then they were stripped of their language and prohibited from learning to keep them enslaved; the greatest symbolic return for their hardship, is through education to their offspring. What we have instead to remedy the impulse of people suffering from a systematic systems of bias, is mass incarceration and continued persecution after release.
I think free admission to college will open the doors of opportunity 10 folds, and will address the economic disparities many of us struggle with. Education would place more of us in positions of authority and leadership so that some of these systematic systems of discrimination are eliminated because more of us will be sitting in those seats. More of us as judges, officers, CEO’s, congressmen and women, that is how we can begin to level the playing field. I just don’t know how much ground we will gain by bringing down an old flag.
What are your thoughts?