By Deborah Barfield Berry and Nicquel Terry Ellis

July 21, 2020

Several Democratic presidential candidates touted support for reparations last year.  According to a study conducted by the Pew Research Center this year, 63% of Americans believe the legacy of slavery continues to affect the position of Black people today.

Up until this point in the U.S., colleges and universities, including Brown University and Georgetown, have led the way in acknowledging their institution’s connection to slavery and funding programs to study slavery and its impact.

Carter said action on reparation bills wouldbe historic.

“We’ve never tried anything that looks like reconciliation, reparation, restitution in this country, never,” she said. “Quite frankly, the United States has had over a century and a half to get this done and to make this wrong right – and it hasn’t.”

William Darity, an expert and professor at Duke University,  said reparations for Black American descendants of U.S. slavery, should fall to the federal government, which has more resources and has long sanctioned discrimination.

“The federal government is the culpable party, and as a matter of principle should foot the bill for reparations,” he wrote in an email to USA TODAY. “But the federal government also is the only entity that can meet the bill.”

Darity said reparations should eliminate the racial wealth gap between Blacks and whites, which he estimates would cost $10 trillion to $12 trillion.

And while Darity said he doesn’t oppose local efforts, he doesn’t think they should be “piecemeal” or should be called reparations. He said officials should form a coalition to push Congress to adopt a comprehensive national plan.

Read the full article here.