Mass Incarceration

Putney Friends: It’s time to discuss reparations for past injustices | Columnists

The next letter was despatched to U.S. Rep. Becca Balint, D-Vt., from Putney Mates Assembly:

Many congratulations in your latest election to the US Home of Representatives. We stay up for your talent, vitality, and dedication to creating this a rustic and world that works effectively for all individuals. We do acknowledge that it’s going to take a while so that you can get to know your colleagues and the entire tradition and system in Washington.

We do need to name your consideration to a selected invoice that has been there some time. We urge you to co-sponsor HR 40 – Fee to Examine and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Individuals Act. The Putney Mates Assembly is deeply dedicated to ending all racism, significantly that skilled by African Individuals. HR 40 will likely be an necessary step in that path. Along with sponsoring HR 40, we encourage you to take a look at problems with significance to the Congressional Black Caucus.

As Vermonters of primarily European heritage we all know we’ve got a lot to study and unlearn. We search to raised perceive the lasting results of enslavement – the persevering with injustices and financial, social, and political discrimination. We see the profit to ourselves and to the nation to have a look at our historical past clearly, recognizing each the beliefs which have guided us and the accidents we’ve got inflicted. We’re discovering that dealing with our personal historical past is painful and is the one method ahead. As a gaggle we’ve got dedicated to studying as a lot as doable and to taking actions that may transfer us nearer to ending racism.

In our research we discovered “A Case for Reparations” by Ta Nehisi Coates very useful. This text particulars the lasting injustice inflicted on African Individuals by the follow of redlining and the continuing, maybe extra delicate, practices that proceed right now. We extremely advocate this text as you proceed to form your ideas about reparations. It was initially printed within the Atlantic Month-to-month after which included in his e book “We Had been Eight Years in Energy.”

As a step on this course of we wish HR 40 to move and we urge you to develop into a co-sponsor. HR 40 will “set up a fee to check and take into account a nationwide apology and a proposal for reparations for the establishment of slavery, its subsequent de jure and de facto racial and financial discrimination towards African-Individuals, and the influence of those forces on residing African-Individuals, to make suggestions to the Congress on applicable cures.”

We consider that now’s the time for this important dialog. The Black Lives Matter motion and rising consciousness of racially biased legislation enforcement and mass incarceration of African Individuals is a strong reminder that equality has not but been reached.

Though we can’t know what the fee would possibly discover, we consider that reparations is about therapeutic ourselves and repairing {our relationships} to one another in addition to recompensing African Individuals for previous injustices.

We’re prepared so as to add this focus to the nationwide discourse and HR 40 is the place to start. Please be part of us by co-sponsoring this invoice.

Julie Forsythe and Francie Marbury are co-clerks for Putney Mates Assembly, Spiritual Society of Mates. The opinions expressed by columnists don’t essentially mirror the views of Vermont Information & Media.

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