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John Conyers Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

Dr. E. Faye Williams

Reparations: America’s Unfinished Business

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Dr. E. Faye Williams, Esq. — Whenever Black people bring up the subject of white Americans acting to cure years of discriminatory acts against Black people when our ancestors were forced to work without compensation, they usually pivot to the term “reverse discrimination” or they question whether reparations would be constitutional. My good friend, Gloria Dulan Wilson, responded to the constitutional argument by saying, “It was once constitutional to beat,…

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Sir Hilary Beckles and Cong. John Conyers

Sir Hilary Beckles Pays Tribute to the Late US Cong. John Conyers as a “Champion for Reparations”

By News & Current Affairs, Reparations, Video/Audio

Conyers was the Longest Serving US Lawmaker Jamaica, W.I. — Reparations activists and advocates across the Caribbean, the USA and around the world are mourning the passing of US Congressman John Conyers who died earlier this week at the age of 90. With 52 years of public service, Conyers was the longest serving congressman of all time. “We at the CARICOM Reparations Commission (CRC) are deeply saddened by the recent…

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Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., speaks during a hearing of the House Judiciary subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, on Capitol Hill in Washington on April 4, 2017.Alex Brandon/AP

Former Michigan Rep. John Conyers, political icon dies at 90

By Commentaries/Opinions, Editors' Choice

Congressman John James Conyers Jr. (May 16, 1929 – October 27, 2019) By Herb Boyd — Unlike his often convulsive, tumultuous political career, former Congressman John Conyers, Jr. died peacefully in his sleep Sunday at his home in Detroit. The iconic and highly productive representative from Michigan was 90. More than half those 90 years were spent on the battleground for civil rights and public service, including 53 years as…

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Congressman John Conyers, Jr.

Another Mighty Tree Has Fallen With the Passing of Congressman John Conyers, Jr.

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Attny. Nkechi Taifa — Congressman John Conyers, during the 2014 Congressional Black Caucus plenary on reparations which you chaired, I spoke of the words of Mamie Till Mobley, the mother of 14-year-old Emmett Till who in 1955 was abducted by whites and thrown into Mississippi’s Tallahatchie River. The only way her son’s beaten and horribly disfigured body could be identified was by a ring he wore on a finger….

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Congressman John Conyers

John Conyers, longest serving black congressman, dies at 90

By News & Current Affairs

DETROIT (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. John Conyers, one of the longest-serving members of Congress whose resolutely liberal stance on civil rights made him a political institution in Washington and back home in Detroit despite several scandals, has died. He was 90. Conyers, among the high-profile politicians toppled by sex harassment allegations in 2017, died at his home on Sunday, said Detroit police spokesman Cpl. Dan Donakowski. The death “looks…

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American Slave Statue

Why Reparations from 1619 to Now

By Commentaries/Opinions, Reparations

By Rev. Irene Monroe, LA Progressive — A year before the Mayflower arrived in 1620, the first group of enslaved Africans depicted as “20 and odd Negroes” arrived sometime during the final week of August to the Virginia colony of Jamestown. The fact that the exact date cannot be pinpointed assists in obfuscating the origins of slavery in the United States. What is incontrovertible is the fact that this month…

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Counting money

What are Reparations, How Could They Happen, and Why Do They Matter?

By Commentaries/Opinions, Reparations

Here’s what you need to know. By Jameelah Nasheed, Teen Vogue — For over 250 years, people of African descent were enslaved in the United States. Tricked and stolen from their homes, subjected to the brutal Middle Passage, and held in bondage for generations, emancipation was a welcome relief from slavery but didn’t fully undo the damage it causes, nor have the various hard-fought advances in civil rights that have…

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Lawmakers on Wednesday held the first congressional hearing in more than a decade on reparations, spotlighting the debate over whether the United States should consider compensation for the descendants of slaves in the United States. (June 19) AP

‘Poison of America’: Bill on slavery reparations gains backing from Sen. Chuck Schumer

By HR 40 Congressional Hearing, News & Current Affairs, Reparations

By Nicholas Wu and Deborah Barfield Berry, USA Today — WASHINGTON – Calling racism the “poison of America,” Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer gave his support Tuesday to a bill to set up a commission to study reparations. “The disparities in race affect everything, not just the obvious things, but the non-obvious things” like pollution and climate change, Schumer explained. The bill, proposed by Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Texas…

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Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, right, and Kwame Ture, the activist formerly known as Stokely Carmichael, attend a tribute to civil rights leader and black nationalist Audley “Queen Mother” Moore, left, in 1996 in New York.

The black woman who launched the modern fight for reparations

By Reparations

Her grass-roots efforts shaped the conversation and presented a path forward. By Ashley D. Farmer, The Washington Post — The reparations hearings in the House of Representatives last week turned contentious as experts such as writer Ta-Nehisi Coates traded barbs with politicians, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. The bill at the heart of the hearings, H.R. 40, first introduced by Rep. John Conyers Jr. in 1989, would create a commission…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

Resisting the Ethical Imperative of Reparations: Seeking Artificial Refuge in Dishonest Denial

By Dr. Maulana Karenga, HR 40 Congressional Hearing, Reparations

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — The recent hearing in the House of Representatives on reparations marks an important step on the long struggle for justice for Black people and accountability from the larger society for the horrendous and harrowing history of enslavement, Jim Crowism and racist oppression of varied kinds. However, in the spirit and speech of Amilcar Cabral, we know we must “mask no difficulties, tell no lies and…

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