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Wealth Inequality Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

U.S. In Distress

The U-Turn That Made America Staggeringly Unequal

By Editors' Choice

By Bob Lord, CounterPunch — Wealth in America has concentrated — and dramatically so — over the past four decades. Since 1980, note wealth researchers Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman, the top 0.1 percent share of the nation’s total wealth has more than doubled, from under 10 percent in 1980 to over 20 percent today. In a nation of over 125 million households, just one ten-thousandth of those households — some 12,500…

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The Rich Can’t Get Richer Forever, Can They?

The Rich Can’t Get Richer Forever, Can They?

By Commentaries/Opinions

Inequality comes in waves. The question is when this one will break. By Liaquat Ahamed, The New Yorker —  In 1831, Alexis de Tocqueville, at the age of twenty-five, was sent by France’s Ministry of Justice to study the American penal system. He spent ten months in the United States, dutifully visiting prisons and meeting hundreds of people, including President Andrew Jackson and his predecessor, John Quincy Adams. On his…

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Civil rights advocates carry placards during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on August 28, 1963, in Washington

Truth and Reconciliation: Addressing Systematic Racism in the United States

By Commentaries/Opinions, Editors' Choice

By Danyelle Solomon — 2019 marks the 400th anniversary of Africans sold into bondage arriving on Virginia’s shores. It has been 156 years since the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, 55 years since the end of Jim Crow, and 51 years since the civil rights movement. All of these moments in U.S. history represent crossroads—moments where the country made a choice or where people demanded that the words on the pages of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights became more than words; that policies and practices were equitably distributed among all people, not just a select few…

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Activists with Black Lives Matter protest in the Harlem neighborhood of New York, Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in the wake of a decision by federal prosecutors who declined to bring civil rights charges against New York City police Officer Daniel Pantaleo, in the 2014 chokehold death of Eric Garner.

America’s deadly wealth pyramid: Eric Garner stood his ground and was crushed for it

By Commentaries/Opinions

Garner scratched-out a living in the gray market. “Not today,” he said when cops came for him. Now he’s dead. By Bob Hennelly, Salon — On the fifth anniversary of Eric Garner’s homicide we were flooded with the video images of his takedown by NYPD officers. What’s been lost in this retrospective was Mr. Garner’s defiant stand minutes earlier when he was first confronted by the police for the economic “high…

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Jeffrey S. Lowe, PhD

Overview of the Crisis of Gentrification in Black America

By Gentrification

Presentation by Jeffrey S. Lowe, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Urban Planning and Environmental Policy, Texas Southern University for the Institute of the Black World 21st Century (IBW). National Emergency Summit on Gentrification Newark, New Jersey, April 4, 2019 Any overview concerned with gentrification that is causing crisis in Black America must begin with defining the process in a meaningful way and contextualizing the situation to particular times and sets…

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Pete Buttigieg

Buttigieg releases 18-page plan to help African Americans and “complement” HR40

By News & Current Affairs, Reparations

WASHINGTON (NBC News) — Working to prove himself to African American voters, Pete Buttigieg is releasing an 18-page plan Thursday to improve conditions and opportunity for black Americans on everything from the health care, education and criminal justice systems to entrepreneurship and access to credit. The wide-ranging plan constitutes Buttigieg’s initial version of a proposal for reparations for slavery. His campaign says it views it as a “complement” to H.R. 40, legislation working…

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We Need To Discuss The Racial Wealth Gap And Reparations

We Need To Discuss The Racial Wealth Gap And Reparations

By Commentaries/Opinions, HR 40 Congressional Hearing, Reparations

By Christian Weller — This article was originally published in Forbes on June 19, 2019. June 19th marks the anniversary of the abolition of slavery in Texas and a reminder that African-Americans should have the same rights and opportunities as whites. But the large racial wealth gap between African-Americans and whites is the starkest reminder that the country has yet to create equal opportunity for all. It reflects hundreds of…

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Abraham Lincoln

One Way to Make Reparations Work

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Noah Smith, Bloomberg — The issue of reparations for African Americans is, of course, full of more moral and historical issues than one column, even by someone with much greater understanding and deeper knowledge than me, could ever resolve. But since the proposal is now being taken seriously, it’s worth thinking about the economics of how it could and should work. The idea of compensating the descendants of American…

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Sen. Cory Booker, left, and Sen. Kamala Harris listen during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 28, 2018

Beyond the Rising Tide: Reparations for Slavery Have to Be More Than a Symbol

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Briahna Gray, The Intercept  — WHEN HIP-HOP radio host Charlamagne tha God asked Sens. Cory Booker and Kamala Harris if they had a “specific agenda” for black Americans on his show, “The Breakfast Club,” earlier this month, it was clear that neither did. “I have a specific agenda for the American people,” started Booker. But for Charlamagne, and many other black Americans, a generalized American agenda isn’t a substitute for…

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Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his famed "I Have Dream" speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, August 28, 1963.

600 Black Legislators Resolved to Push Policies for Economic Justice

By News & Current Affairs

On King Holiday Commemoration: 600 Black Legislators Resolved to Push Policies for Economic Justice. Resolution considered new win for Black Wealth 2020 By Hazel Trice Edney — It was three years ago that a group of national business leaders launched a movement called Black Wealth 2020 partially based on the economic vision articulated by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. King said in his final speech on April 3, 1968: “It’s…

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