Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Long Time Coming...

Perhaps you recall Doc OC's provocative post last March, "(Re-) Considering Slavery...". Think of the final question he posed: "[W]hat has the country done to address the past wrongs of slavery?"

Now we may have a kind of response to that from the House of Representatives. According to CNN, for the first time ever, a branch of the federal government has made a formal apology for slavery. Specifically, the House addressed the "injustice, cruelty, brutality and inhumanity of slavery..."

Furthermore, the non-binding resolution argues,
African-Americans continue to suffer from the consequences of slavery and Jim Crow -- long after both systems were formally abolished -- through enormous damage and loss, both tangible and intangible, including the loss of human dignity and liberty, the frustration of careers and professional lives, and the long-term loss of income and opportunity.
The resolution says nothing about reparations and it's not the first time the federal government has made this kind of apology toward an American minority group. But one might ask many other questions regarding this action by the government:
  1. Is there even a need for such a resolution after so many years have passed since slavery?
  2. If this resolution is needed, what are your thoughts on the "non-binding" nature of it?
  3. Is this or should this be the first step toward reparations?