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California Launches Reparations to Compensate African Americans

Compensate African Americans
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EDITOR NOTE: The following article addresses a highly sensitive topic: racial inequality. The reason for this is that a large segment of the policies set in place to counter it has done very little to help. Plus, many of these policies have only embittered taxpayers who feel the results have had very little effect relative to the cost, save for the improved “morale” (by means of virtue signaling) among the very people who systematically, and perhaps unconsciously, engaged in systemic acts of prejudice and oppression. As for those who’ve experienced or continue to experience real systemic oppression--zilch effect, it seems. Obviously, we’re still talking about and trying to do something about it because inequality is as strong as it's ever been. Not surprisingly, there are many false assumptions surrounding this issue--one being that it's a lack of “education” that causes racial injustice. Truth be told, not everyone will be satisfied with “freedom” and equality via equal opportunity in a free market--the libertarian folly. Some people thrive on oppressing or even destroying others (just think of a really bad boss you’ve had or a jerk coworker who gets off on making others feel miserable about themselves--we all know the type). True equal opportunity, freedom of action and belief (in a way that doesn’t oppress others), absence of political and social coercion, and a free market system would best serve everyone, no matter where you’re from or what you look like. Everyone has it in them to rise economically given the right mindset and absence of unnecessary barriers. If there’s any policy-based solution to compensate African Americans or other examples, perhaps that would be worth funding. Everything else makes politicians look good, makes systemic oppressors feel less guilty, makes deliberate oppressors want to oppress even more, and makes taxpayers poorer. As for those for whom the policies were intended to benefit--just look around. Are the policies working?

California kicked off a two-year study into how the state might compensate African Americans for slavery and its lingering effects on Tuesday, when a newly formed reparations committee met for the first time.

The first-in-the-nation committee is the result of Gov. Gavin Newsom last year signing a bill authored by then-Assemblymember Shirley Weber, whom he subsequently appointed as California’s first Black secretary of state. The nine-member task force will draft an apology to Black Californians and recommend ways the state might make up for discriminatory policies, which could include issuing direct payments to the descendants of enslaved people or passing laws to close racial disparities.

State lawmakers have zeroed in on homeownership as one of the main ways to close the wealth gap between Black and white Californians. On Tuesday, the Assembly and Senate unveiled a joint spending plan — which they’ll use to negotiate with Newsom ahead of the June 15 deadline to pass a budget — that proposes developing a program in which the state would pay for, and own, up to 45% of a home. That would cut the purchase price nearly in half, allowing more families to buy homes and build wealth, lawmakers say. Both Newsom and legislators also proposed setting aside $200 million to facilitate homeownership for first-time buyers and low-income Californians.

President Joe Biden also announced a series of initiatives to expand Black homeownership during a Tuesday speech in Tulsa, Oklahoma, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre.

The state Legislature also wants to funnel $115 million annually into community-based health equity and racial justice efforts and $63 million into the California Reducing Disparities ProjectNewsom’s budget proposal had been slammed by California health groups for its “unfortunate absence of investments towards health equity.”

The coronavirus bottom line: As of Tuesday, California had 3,685,455 confirmed cases (+0.01% from previous day) and 62,021 deaths (+0.02% from previous day), according to a CalMatters tracker.

California has administered 37,557,507 vaccine doses, and 51.2% of eligible Californians are fully vaccinated.

Plus: CalMatters regularly updates this pandemic timeline tracking the state’s daily actions. We’re also tracking the state’s coronavirus hospitalizations by county and lawsuits against COVID-19 restrictions.

Original post from CallMatters

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