“They’re asking for a lot. They’re asking for what would obviously bankrupt the state”
John Murawski has written an analysis of this subject at Real Clear Investigations with comments from a number of legal experts. Our own Professor Jacobson is quoted:
After Supreme Court Ruling, Reparations Fight Lives On as ‘Not Race-Based’
The uncertain legality of paying reparations for slavery and its legacies came into focus last week when the U.S. Supreme Court rejected racial preferences in college admissions nationwide. But while some see the ruling as a major setback for the reparations movement, it isn’t likely to deter its advocates, who say that redress for racial discrimination would not be based strictly on race.
The same day the Supreme Court declared the admissions practices at Harvard College and the University of North Carolina unconstitutional, Kamilah Moore, head of the California task force at the forefront of the national reparations effort, announced on Twitter that the cause is not affected by the decision: “Our reparations recommendations are not race-based, but rather are based on lineal descent.”…
William Jacobson, clinical professor of law at Cornell Law School and president of the Legal Insurrection Foundation, which runs conservative websites, said the task force presumes every black person is a powerless victim who deserves compensation – precisely the sort of crude stereotyping the Supreme Court majority has rejected. Jacobson further said that calculating only harms without considering “the other side of the ledger” – like government assistance or other benefits someone’s parents or grandparents may have accrued over a lifetime – is a dishonest moral calculus.
“They’re asking for a lot. They’re asking for what would obviously bankrupt the state,” said University of San Diego law professor Gail Heriot, who helped lead the movement to defeat racial preferences in 2020 as co-chair of the Californians 4 Equal Rights/No on Prop 16, and in 1996 co-chaired Yes on Proposition 209, which implemented the state’s ban on racial preferences.
“Reparations of this kind will likely lead to inter-racial and inter-ethnic strife – just the opposite of what the California’s leaders should be trying to do,” she said. “It’s unlikely to go down well with the people who are paying the taxes for this.”
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