Saturday, June 20, 2009

Senate Apologizes for Slavery

On his Atlantic blog, Ta-Nehisi Coates notes that the Senate passed a resolution apologizing for slavery. The comment thread below this post included the following exchange:

Apparently, a lot of members of the CBC [Congressional Black Caucus] aren't happy with the verbiage. They say it allows the State to dip out of any further responsibility. My hometown's Rep was quoted...

"The language is unacceptable," said Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-Mo., "I'm a reparations man — how else do you repair the damage?"

I have to admit that this made me shudder a bit.

Yeah I was hoping there'd be a legal opening for civil action also.

No, this makes me shudder for St. Louis. The town is ass backwards when it comes to race relations. Gotta be one of the worst in the country. That comment is not going to go over well, but Clay doesn't need the white vote to win...

I aint payin a dime for 'reparations' and I'd say the same thing if I was white.

Well you're not sitting on the Board of Directors for companies like Aetna which has direct ties to slavery and still exists today, either. If you were, I'd be putting your company in the crosshairs and rightfully so.

After reading that last comment by Juba, curiosity prompted me to look up the board of directors of Aetna. Aetna's board includes three African American directors -- one of whom, Ronald A. Williams, is the company's CEO. Pictured above are, from left, Mr. Williams, and Aetna's other two African American directors, Frank Clark, the CEO of Commonwealth Edison, and Earl Graves, the publisher of Black Enterprise magazine.

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