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Mitch McConnell Explains Why Reparations Aren’t a Good Idea, and Democrats Pounce and Seize

Mitch McConnell Explains Why Reparations Aren’t a Good Idea, and Democrats Pounce and Seize

In spite of the deep unpopularity of reparations, the left periodically trots this issue out because there are few cards they enjoy playing more than the race card.

The issue of reparations took center stage in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday and, as expected, the Usual Suspects were standing at the ready with some familiar absolute moral authority cards to play against those who oppose the idea.

The main target of the left’s ire this week has been Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who was asked about the issue Tuesday. Here’s what he said:

“I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago for whom none of us currently living are responsible is a good idea,” the Kentucky Republican told reporters in response to a question about whether reparations should be paid or a public apology should be made by Congress or the President.

“We’ve tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a civil war, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We elected an African American president,” he said.


“I think we’re always a work in progress in this country but no one currently alive was responsible for that and I don’t think we should be trying to figure out how to compensate for it,” he said. “First of all, it’d be pretty hard to figure out who to compensate. We’ve had waves of immigrants as well come to the country and experience dramatic discrimination of one kind or another so no, I don’t think reparations are a good idea.”

Watch video of his comments below:

CNN‘s Don Lemon blasted McConnell Tuesday night:

CNN anchor Don Lemon took aim at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Tuesday night, arguing his opposition to the idea of reparations was “simple-minded and stupid.”


“To say no one is alive is dealing with that, ok, that’s an argument, that’s an excuse a lot of people use,” Lemon said. But no one minds taking advantage of the benefits they got from slavery and from Jim Crow.

“Maybe you should give back some of your wealth. Maybe you should give back your grandfather’s college degree, your great, great grandfather’s land that you were given,” he continued. “People weren’t there, but people reaped the benefits from it and that is the whole point of the matter.


“His argument is simple-minded, it’s stupid. I would say it’s — it comes from a position of privilege and probably one of bigotry as well,” he concluded.

Watch video of Lemon’s rant below:

The following day, a House Judiciary subcommittee hearing on reparations took place:

A House Judiciary subcommittee debated H.R. 40, a bill that would study how the U.S. would implement reparations to black Americans, amid a national conversation about what the federal government owes descendants of slaves. [Sen. Cory] Booker, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates and actor Danny Glover were among the witnesses who testified before the panel.

The panel took place on “Juneteenth,” a holiday which commemorates the day of emancipation for slaves in Texas on June 19, 1865, as well as the general emancipation of all slaves.

In addition to appearing on the reparations panel, Sen. Booker also gave a radio interview Wednesday in which he denounced McConnell’s Tuesday statement:

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) said Wednesday that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) comments this week in opposition to reparations for descendants of slaves displayed a “tremendous amount of ignorance.”

“You hear things like that, and talking about somehow electing Barack Obama was tantamount to reparations. Just leaving that alone — it’s hard to do that, frankly,” Booker told Sirius XM host Joe Madison Wednesday.

“I think that one of the big strikes of ignorance that he says there is that somehow this is about a compensation, in other words, writing a check to somebody and reducing the urgency of this conversation to simply that,” added Booker, who has introduced legislation to study the issue.

Not surprisingly, the knives were out for McConnell at the hearing – most notably from Ta-Nehisi Coates, the left’s favorite reparations advocate:

Coates, the author of “The Case for Reparations,” a 2014 Atlantic article that pushed discussions of reparations further into the national spotlight, argued that McConnell’s comments dismissed the very real impacts of slavery in America and ignored that many living black Americans directly experienced Jim Crow and other forms of legalized discrimination.

“For a century after the Civil War, black people were subjected to a relentless campaign of terror,” Coates said. “A campaign that extended well into the lifetime of Majority Leader McConnell.”

After describing the vast economy built on the backs of enslaved men and women and the “torture, rape, and child trafficking” they endured, Coates then listed several acts of racism and injustice against African Americans that occurred during McConnell’s youth.

Watch the speech Coates gave to the committee below:

Naturally, the left and the mainstream media (but I repeat myself) fawned over Coates’s speech and how he managed to so eloquently take unnecessary cheap shots at those who oppose reparations.

But as well-spoken as Coates happens to be on the subject, his case for reparations is a “dead-end,” as Professor Jacobson pointed out in 2014 after Coates’s essay was published:

If you can’t answer the question of why a Vietnamese boat person has to pay reparations for the conduct of white plantation owners more than a century earlier, then you can’t make the argument.

If you can’t answer the question of why two successful black doctors living in a fashionable suburb should get reparations paid for by the white children of Appalachia, then you can’t make the argument.

If you can’t answer the question of why the adult black recent immigrant from Paris should be pay or be paid reparations based on the color of his skin for crimes committed in a land he did not grow up in, then you can’t make the argument.


And as if we have not thrown trillions at the problem, and sullied ourselves with engaging in more racism to remedy past racism.

Not only that, but polling shows the idea is deeply unpopular with the American people, and for good reason.

In spite of the deep unpopularity of the idea, and despite the well-reasoned arguments of Prof. Jacobson and others like Kevin Williamson against reparations, the left periodically trots this issue out because there are few cards they enjoy playing more than the race card.

What better time to do it than in a crucial presidential election season? Several Democratic candidates have stated they are on board with studying ways for reparations to be implemented, and those who have previously expressed opposition have been – ahem – made to care about the issue.

Democrats are bringing this issue up at a time when they know it has no chance of passage in the Senate, and even assuming a Democrat wins the White House next year, the Senate likely will still be controlled by Republicans. So even then reparations wouldn’t stand a chance of passage.

Bringing up reparations at this point is just another way Democrats can shamelessly exploit the issue of race for political gain and give false hope of something happening that they know in reality will not for the foreseeable future. It’s another way they go about attempting to buy votes. They’ve done it in similar ways with women in the past. With the LGBT community. And also with the black community. It’s insulting, it’s dishonest and it’s not going to happen – and Democrats know it.

As to Booker’s criticism that McConnell said electing Obama was a form of reparations, he, too, is being dishonest. But then again, Booker has rarely come across a camera, microphone, or spotlight that he didn’t like. McConnell’s point in bringing up Obama’s election was to demonstrate we as a country had made significant racial progress.

This is something even David Axelrod acknowledged in a tweet from last night, even though his overall point was wide off the mark:

So in order to totally be on board with racial progress in politics you must agree with everything the politician says, too, I guess.

On this issue, Democrats are nothing if not predictable.

— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —


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Reparations? Sure, if the take the money they need to renounce US citizenship and get on a boat back to the Congo.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to Tsquared. | June 20, 2019 at 6:39 pm

    “Liberia is a country in West Africa which was founded, established, colonized, and controlled by citizens of the United States and ex-Caribbean slaves as a colony for former African American slaves and their free black descendants.
    History of Liberia – Wikipedia

    America already paid reparations, those who chose to not take advantage of that can do so now. Otherwise, F them. I am fed up with all their crap. I wish those who have the smarts and gumption to work for a better life a good outcome, those who are lazy and entitled deserve to be put in their place.

    Like one other poster on this thread, I never inherited anything, I worked for what I have. One of my grandparents was native American, they had it far worse than blacks, still I prefered success over begging for, or demanding things.

    MattMusson in reply to Tsquared. | June 21, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    Let all the people who support Reparations donate to a GOFUNDME campaign. Then, after 30 days, the government will match whatever they raised. (Everyone gets a popsicle.)

    Neo in reply to Tsquared. | June 21, 2019 at 4:30 pm

    Slaves transported to 1501-1875 (including colonies)

    111,040 Denmark / Baltic
    305,326 U.S.A.
    554,336 Netherlands
    1,061,524 Spain / Uruguay
    1,381,404 France
    3,259,441 Great Britain
    5,848,266 Portugal / Brazil

    12,521,337 Totals

If ever an AA journo-list existed, it’s got to be Don Lemon.

I am 52 years old, I moved out of my parents home when I was 16. I have inherited nothing from my grandparents, or my parents. In fact I support my mother and paid for her home. I put myself through college and worked my but off to get to a +6 figure income by becoming one of the best in my field.
When i was born my mother lived in a roach infested 1 bedroom apartment. My sister and I slept in bunk beds in the dining room. I remember as a kid turning on the lights before putting your feet on the floor so the roaches would all run away.

No one gave me anything, I worked for it.

If they use my taxes to pay reparations, any future taxes I will ever pay again will be after I am dead at the point of a gun.

Paul In Sweden | June 20, 2019 at 6:07 pm

Reparations would be better handled in arbitration with the DNC as only Democrats held slaves. I would suggest that all former slaves contact the DNC.

So tired of this crap. I am pretty much negroed out. I don’t mean anyone harm, but I sure as hell am not going out of my way to help them. Some folks just seem intent on starting a race war. Democrats are willing to rip this country apart, for what…. power over a broken country?

You won’t like this but Germans, most of which had nothing to do with Hitler, are paying “repairations” to Jews who also weren’t at the camps.
Now Israel insists the 2019 Poles pay repairations. But the Poles are now saying Germans should pay repairations for what they did in WW2.

Even Germans and thier descendants who hid Jews to save them. But they have to pay too.

Is there any statute of limitations? Especially over many decades or generations?

If a Polish family today owes something to Israel over something they weren’t even alive for, how can you say it doesn’t apply to similar Americans on both sides?

There is a reason we have INDIVIDUAL rights and justice and not collective.

    Milhouse in reply to tz. | June 20, 2019 at 8:56 pm

    German reparations are individual, not collective. The state of Germany pays compensation to individuals who have demonstrated that its crimes harmed them personally. This is no different from anyone who harms another. If you deliberately ram your car into someone and they’re crippled for the rest of their lives, you’ll either have to pay them a lump sum that’s enough to cover their lifetime damage, or else pay them regularly for the rest of their lives.

    German taxpayers have to pay it, just as all taxpayers have to pay their country’s debts, even those run up before they were born. The UK just recently paid off the last of its WW1 debt. I’m not sure when the US did so.

    As for Poland, the only demand being made is the return of stolen property to its owners. How can anyone have a problem with that?

      alaskabob in reply to Milhouse. | June 20, 2019 at 9:41 pm

      I’m not sure when the US did so.” Now to which countries did we owe money to in WW1 or WW2?

      England did pay off it debts to the USA and Canada for WW2. Lend-Lease was essentially a give away, but once US got into the war England borrowed money from US and Canada. Because of its economy payments were suspended for a time.

        Milhouse in reply to alaskabob. | June 20, 2019 at 11:55 pm

        Countries?! What have countries got to do with it? The US borrowed huge amounts of money, in both WW1 and WW2. I don’t know whether those loans have yet been paid, or when they were paid, but it was surely long after the wars they financed were over. The UK had WW1 debt outstanding until four years ago.

    stl in reply to tz. | June 21, 2019 at 8:14 pm

    The difference is, the german government still exists and they were defeated. The Democrat Confederation was defeated and no longer exists. Why should the republican victors be required to pay? It’s another democrat ploy to distance themselves from their own history and guilt republicans into playing the bad guy. Plus, slaves were not brought here to be exterminated so ending slavery and giving them the same liberties as the rest of us should be considered a silver lining. Would most of today’s descendants of actual slaves even exist today, were they still left in their west african lands? Not trying to trivialize, but blame the dems, not all whites, and be thankful that you are here. (Big picture thinking…)

Sorry for the O.T., but big news from the ninth circuit, today. They have ruled that President Trump CAN defund planned parenthood.

Just an FYI.

So all black people win the lottery with everyone else picking up the tab? Or just white people? There is no finding justice in any of this. You can’t unscramble the eggs and after 150+ years, there is no unscrambling them.

There will be no reconciliation between blacks and everyone else in this country if this goes through. It will change everything forever. The polls, such as they are, tell us only 1/3 of blacks do not support reparations. The other 2/3 really need to think deeply about voting to permanently jump into the shitcan of reparations. It will be the end of any hope for racial tolerance in the US, at least for blacks.

If fighting the civil war where over 600,000 white people died in freeing the slaves doesn’t count for anything, then maybe the South should have won.

Alan McIntire | June 20, 2019 at 6:38 pm

I think reparations- paid solely by the DEMOCRATIC Party, which SUPPORTED slavery, is a GREAT idea!

I don’t concede that I owe any [insert that word that’s going to come back into fashion of this idiocy persists] a dime.

But—seriously—I will voluntarily, even gladly, contribute to a fund which will ship any American who can provide even a shred of evidence that an ancestor was enslaved and transported to the New World, back to place of origin. And they can take their money and property with them, but must renounce American citizenship and all further claims in perpetuity. I will, further, renounce all claim for compensation for property which one black person or another has stolen from me over the years. Make it a clean slate.

Hey, don’t thank me, I’m always willing to help out a fellow American, even it he’s not going to remain an American.

Seeing how it was African tribal leaders who were ultimately responsible for selling their ancestors into slavery, I suggest these agitated money-grubbers look there first.

And since they’re so obviously triggered by the history of slavery, perhaps the SJW crowd could really make a difference by confronting the one group that still sanctions and practices slavery today: radical Muslims.

I felt good about my progression in life from racist to not, but after obama and BLM I am sliding back

If this passes at some point, I think America will explode

    n.n in reply to gonzotx. | June 20, 2019 at 8:13 pm

    The clear and progressive risk is that the ball of yarns spun over a multidecadal period will unwind with explosive force and cause liberal collateral damage.

Every time The Turtle is seen on camera, the GOP loses more independent votes.

Imagine our progress if we had a telegenic conservative runnning OUR Senate majority?

If someone in my family tree was killed fighting for the Union, can I sue the DNC/democrat party (the party of slavery)? Can others who lost a family member in he Civil War form a class action suit against the DNC? If I had an ancestor that assisted on the Underground Railroad, do I get an exception? If I am a member of the abolitionist party (the GOP), can I get an exception? Can we sue the direct descendants of slave owners, including the black slave owners? Can we reinstitute Bills of attainder so ALL past sins, past abuses, past crimes and misconduct become subject to current penalty? I have about 423 more questions, but I don’t think anyone is interested in answering them so I’ll just stop now.

    Until about 80 years ago, my ancestors lived mostly in northern Quebec since the early 16th century. Canada was a sanctuary destination for runaway slaves. Do I get an exemption?

Reparations in blood and treasure, assimilation and integration. That said, no more 1/2 Americans. Diversity (i.e. color judgment) breeds adversity. #HateLovesAbortion

Maybe they should go back to Africa and get reparations from the tribal chiefs who sold their ancestors into slavery. Along with the Arab slave trade bigwigs.
And we also need reparations from the democrats for starting the slave trade in America with the resulting loss of life on the union side in the Civil War.

Sidenote (hat tip my little buddy Tehya).

We also need a new law. One that makes a balanced budget mandatory unless in time of war. Failure of the Congress to balance the budget would result in one year in “Pound me in the ***” prison for ALL legislators holding seats in any Congress that fails to balance the budget regardless of how they voted.

The big problem with going back to Africa is that:

1) They can no longer claim protected minority status
2) They will be marginalized for not being “black” enough
3) They weren’t “down for the struggle” in Africa, living it easy although Chicago might quality as a war zone equal to …say… Angola?
4) Their skill set will not get them as far. Look at all the hard studying kids in Africa knowing an education is the only way up.

Take this without religious overtones, plain and simple: The United States government does not permit the concept of blood guilt in its legal system. To introduce the legal concept that the sins of the father are passed on to his children goes against everything we stand for. To imprison, fine, or otherwise punish some person who has committed no crime other than being the descendant of somebody is beyond contempt, and any politician who attempts to impose such unconstitutional punishment on even a single individual deserves to be thrown out of Washington into a dung heap.

Have I made myself clear?

    tyates in reply to georgfelis. | June 21, 2019 at 4:46 am

    Yes this is 100% correct. Reparations are both morally and legally indefensible because we can only be responsible for our own actions not those of our ancestors. This should be obvious to any intelligent person.

    smalltownoklahoman in reply to georgfelis. | June 21, 2019 at 7:09 am

    Thank you, that was part of a point I was trying to make last night but before I could post I had to go take care of something so I just closed my browser without posting. Yes, no blood guilt in our legal system and for good reason: it’s a toxic way of thinking, a way of continuously persecuting people even when they did nothing wrong themselves. Our Founders were wise to reject it when they were establishing our legal system. DNA is inheritable, property may be inheritable, guilt is not inheritable – it belongs solely to the perpetrator(s) of a misdeed and none other! Punishing people who had no connection to the misdeed, who may not have even been alive at the time it was committed, is not and never will be justice. At best it would be a form of petty, misguided and misdirected vengeance. As others here have already pointed out that won’t help improve race relations here in our country at all!

More and more I am getting concerned that white people will begin to show the same indignation that some black leaders exhibit(via the race card)toward white people. Those testifying in hearings should be much more vehement against the race baiters. Only through repeated forceful rejection of the race baiters values in the public square will clean up this on-going mess.

A) Virtually every african american is better off financially and their quality of life is significantly better than their conterparts who remained in Africa. Do blacks owe reprations for the emmense benefits of life in america vs the life they would have in africa

b) Do Blacks owe repratations the white families that fought for their freedom

Antifundamentalist | June 21, 2019 at 10:08 am

Of course reparations should be paid to any Living former slave. For descendants of slaves who still feel that reparations are owed them, direct those disgruntled personages to the Liberian Embassy, with instructions on how to request a change of citizenship. The US could even offer a grant to cover the one-way air-fare. The people alive today are not responsible in any way for the actions of those who came before.

This is nothing more than the traditional Democrat ploy of offering a group of people something, which they have no intention of giving them, in order to secure their vote. Because of their policies, over the last 25 years, the Democrats desperately need to secure all of the African -American vote that they can. So, they promise them free money. After all, the voting block already has affirmative action, racial quotas, welfare, subsidized healthcare and racial victimhood protections. What is left? Free money for being Black. It is not likely to happen, so I simply ignore the Dems.

Riddle me this…the democrat government for whom reparations would be required was defeated and dismantled. Why would the republican government that won the war and ended slavery, be expected to pay reparations?

Oh my. What does Mr. Obama say about his people, East African Muslims, hunting and selling their neighbors to the Middle East for about twenty years after American slavery ended? Indeed, it was only at the point of British maxim guns in the 1880’s that the slave trade from East Africa was suppressed.

But I’m disappointed here. Feeling all guilty about slavery is the way some of us turn ourselves into the peers of the Tidewater and Codfish aristocracies and all those others who, back as the 19th century was drawing to a close, called our grandfathers Greenhorns.