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

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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Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D., Texas), speaking during a House committee hearing.

The point of talking about reparations is to reckon with generations of racial injustice

By Reparations

HR 40 is about more than money. It’s about grappling with history. By The Christian Century — In a widely discussed 2014 essay in the Atlantic titled “The Case for Reparations,” Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote that a debate on recompensing African Americans for the injustices of slavery might locate a debt “so large it can’t be imagined, let alone calculated and dispensed.” Even so, Coates said, addressing the question is essential to…

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Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D., Texas), speaking during a House committee hearing.

Reparations: The ‘lost cause’ of black politics?

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Roger House, The Hill — The black American demand for reparations over slavery and segregation has gained attention in political circles recently. How it emerged as a topic of federal policy is unclear — but it comes at a timely moment in our national story. This year marks the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved Africans arriving at the colony of Jamestown, Va. No doubt the 2014 magazine essay by Ta-Nehisi…

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John Conyers

Presidential race revives Conyers’ push for reparations

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Melissa Nann Burke, The Detroit News — U.S. Rep. John Conyers Jr. introduced a bill in every Congress for nearly 30 years to study the institution of slavery and to recommend appropriate reparations. Few of his colleagues in the Democratic Party seemed to take him seriously. The bill had a hearing in 2007 and never moved out of committee. But reparations has become a recurrent topic in the Democratic…

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Reparations in defense of our democracy

Reparations in defense of our democracy

By Commentaries/Opinions, Reparations

By Evelyn N. Farkas, The Hill — With the release of the new movie “LBJ,” we are reminded of a time when foreign and domestic policy seemed more separate, when Americans could revile LBJ for the Vietnam War, and the same Americans could admire him for his earth-shattering Jim Crow-smashing civil rights legislation. But today foreign and domestic policy seem inextricably linked, not least because our adversary in the Kremlin…

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Dr. Ron Daniels, President of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century (IBW21)

It’s Nation Time Again – Progress Report on State of Black World Conference IV

By Press Releases / Statements, SOBWC Posts

Dear Friends in the Struggle: State of the Black World Conference IV (SOBWC IV), November 16-20, 2016, was one of the great gatherings of people of African descent, Black people, in recent history. People are still buzzing about the richness of the interaction and networking, the powerful information and spirit of unity/togetherness that was experienced. Equally important, the Declaration of Intent and Call to Action from the Conference laid out…

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