Down with Plessy v Ferguson … Props to Brown v Board of Education of Topeka
Poverty, richness, crooked cops and misfits,
violence, hatred, real devastation,
neighborhoods looking like there’s still segregation,
welfare, single mothers, no jobs,
tryna get a piece for yourself, but they hogging up the whole pie,
fiends in the street so high off of that crack shit,
this nigga thirteen with a gat under his mattress…
White folks got the road to success mapped and that’s all good,
but why don’t black’s got that same atlas?
I asked the same question a million ways
and it seems like I had prayed for a million days.
Still the ills remain - just bills and pain.
Shoot outs and project buildings, children slain,
skies filled with rain and I just sit and wonder why.
Its enough to make a nigga wanna cry,
but I can’t though…” —J Cole (Can’t Cry)
Reparations send a message to Americans of every other race that blacks are wards of the state because they are a broken people. Social ills in the black community would be exaggerated as black people, flush with one big check, decide they don’t need school, don’t need a job, and remove themselves from the vitality of mainstream American life. Black people would be more highly stigmatized and stereotyped than ever before.
The suffering of ancestors is not a claim ticket for a bag full of cash. Who wants money in their pocket that is stained with the blood of slaves? That is obscene. The great civil rights struggle has always been for the right to an equal opportunity to compete. Being equal requires the confidence that comes from knowing you have earned your way, even against great odds and injustice.” —Juan Williams (On the debate agains reparations)
Now my friends, I am opposed to the system of society in which we live today, not because I lack the natural equipment to do for myself but because I am not satisfied to make myself comfortable knowing that there are thousands of my fellow men who suffer for the barest necessities of life. We were taught under the old ethic that man’s business on this earth was to look out for himself. That was the ethic of the jungle; the ethic of the wild beast. Take care of yourself, no matter what may become of your fellow man. Thousands of years ago the question was asked; ”Am I my brother’s keeper?” That question has never yet been answered in a way that is satisfactory to civilized society.
Yes, I am my brother’s keeper. I am under a moral obligation to him that is inspired, not by any maudlin sentimentality but by the higher duty I owe myself. What would you think me if I were capable of seating myself at a table and gorging myself with food and saw about me the children of my fellow beings starving to death.” —Eugene V. Debs (1908)