Reparations Are For Descendants of Black Slaves, Weber Says

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s secretary of state said Thursday that reparations for African Americans should be limited to people whose forbears were kidnapped from their homeland, stripped of their ancestry and left with nothing after generations of forced labor.

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Shirley Weber, the daughter and granddaughter of sharecroppers who authored legislation creating the first-in-the-nation task force to study reparations, said while Black immigrants have suffered from racism in the U.S., they always had a country to return to. Slavery was more than a physical condition, she said, and its psychological impact stunted people’s ability to strive beyond survival.

“The fear my grandfather felt, I remember as a child, was palpable, and it crippled him and his family’s ability to dream beyond the cotton fields,” Weber said at Thursday’s meeting of the task force to study and develop reparations for African Americans. The meeting continues Friday.

She said that Barack Obama likely never would have dreamed of becoming president had he descended from enslaved people. Obama, the country’s first Black president, had a white mother and a Black father from Kenya who came to the U.S. to study. Obama, she said, “did not have limitations and fears drilled in his psyche, and thus aspire to become the president of the United States.”

The nine-member task force, which started meeting in July, is on a two-year timeline to address the harms of slavery, especially given inaction at the federal level. Critics have said that California did not have slaves as in other states and that it shouldn’t have to address the issue, or pay for it.

But expert testimony being heard by the task force overwhelmingly points to large racial disparities in wealth, health and education in California. African Americans make up just 6% of California’s population yet were 30% of an estimated 250,000 people experiencing homelessness who sought help in 2020. Their communities have been razed in the name of redevelopment and Black people remain over-represented in jails.

In September, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation returning prime beachfront property to descendants of a Black couple who had the land taken away by eminent domain.

Click here to read the full article at AP News


  1. Shirley Weber, cry me a river. You’re an example of ancestor’s of slaves brought from Africa that have done well for themselves. There are many others including Dr. Ben Carson. It is way past time to get over what happened over 200 years ago. You’re making things worse not better.

    • We’re each responsible for ensuring access to opportunities starting with stable homes, safe neighborhoods, quality schools and instruction. Let’s look forward, not back. No one questions the horrors of slavery, Jim Crow, of the realities of inner-city project life. It’s out job to fix what’s wrong now. Spending essential energy tasking ‘Reparations’ is unproductive.

  2. Danie Smith says

    We all understand the suffering…but the reparations should be from those who cause the suffering, meaning mainly the descendants of slave owners who are, if you know history, mostly democrats from southern states and even some Blacks slave owners also. And most African Americans are mixed race from their ancestor slave owners. which makes them descendants of the same, maybe like Obama’s mother ancestry….

    • how about the owners of slave ships. According to former NAACP multi-term president Francis White, Jr. 40 of those 44 ships were owned by Spanish and Portuguese Jews. Oh, my, what an INCONVENIENT truth.

  3. This is the kind of B.S. that falls into the “oh poor me” CRT category designed to instill racism in the minds of minorities. Wake up and listen to the positive such as Candace Owens (Blexit) and pull yourself up by the bootstraps as any American has the right to do (so far).

  4. Reparations definition: Forcibly taking property away from people who never had anything to do with slavery, and giving to people who were never slaves.

  5. AP news? Trash. Sick of the OH ME crowd.

  6. Caliwiteflite says

    How convenient of this idiot to suppress the fact that it was the black race that sold their own people into slavery. She also neglects to inform people that the first owner of slaves was a black man (Anthony Johnson) who owned a tobacco farm, and, he owned white slaves.

  7. Shawn Paul Boike says

    Bad Idea! Sue the Tribes of Africa & the Dutch for creating the black slave trades, Many other races of people have slaved, Irish, Italian, Chinese, most Asians, Jews & the story neve ends. Pushing the race card Dems (Confederates, the slave owners) only card to play when they ran out of logical debate, knowledege & common sense.

  8. You want reparations? Then go to the Arabs who raided your villages and sold your ancestors into slavery. While we are at it, reparations for the whites you murdered and sold into slavery too. Your own village elders participated in the lucrative slave trade business.

  9. Why don’t they go after the Muslims that incarcerated and sold them into slavery?

    • Not only Muslims, but African kings of tribes who raided other tribes and took slaves. Whites didn’t go collecting slaves. The slave ship owners traded rum and other things those kings wanted for people who were already enslaved by other blacks.

  10. Disgusted California says

    OK – so – is she proposing that extensive genealogies be done on everyone who thinks they qualify??? So many of them are ALSO partially Caucasian!!!!! Then what??? Ha ha ha!!!

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