Opening Pandora’s box

state sealThen-speaker Thom Tillis, Skip Stam, the Black Caucus, and The John Locke Foundation were all quite passionate about passing reparations for people sterilized by the state of North Carolina from the 20s to the 70s.  Some of us who were skeptical of that push were worried about the precedent that could be set by approving payments like this.  Well, the reparations finally got approved, and — apparently — a new group of people has been inspired: 

The N.C. Democratic Party is calling on state lawmakers to pay descendants of people victimized by the 1898 Wilmington Race Riot.

The party’s State Executive Committee passed the resolution Saturday.

“This was a dark time in North Carolina’s and our Party’s history, and one that the NCDP felt needed to be acknowledged,” said Chairman Randy Voller. “Though we understand that no amount of compensation can ever rectify this atrocity, we believe that opening the dialogue will assist in the healing of the African-American community that was so harshly affected.”

A state commission concluded in 2006 that racial violence led to an “armed overthrow of the legitimately elected municipal government” on Nov. 10, 1898. The actions – deemed a “documented conspiracy” – were led by members of the Democratic white elite that “achieved their political goals through violence and intimidation.”

The commission’s report found that the events “left an unknown number of dead on Wilmington’s streets.” The coroner performed 14 inquests, but, the according to the report, other evidence suggests as many as 60 people were killed.payupsucker

The Democratic party’s resolution states, “The legacy of this holocaust still haunts the economic and political life of Wilmington, as many white-owned businesses and political careers were financed with the spoils of the devastating attack, and African Americans in New Hanover county today own less than 1% of local businesses and have only two black elected officials…”

Wilmington resident Sonya Bennetone pushed the state party to pass the resolution. She didn’t know how many people would be eligible to receive reparations.

“I think it’s a disservice to the decedents of the victims of the 1898 to have these monuments put up, have these programs every year and not provide compensation,” Bennetone said.

A Democratic party spokeswoman said the resolution would be sent to New Hanover County’s legislative delegation next week.

Area lawmakers didn’t respond to e-mails Friday asking if they would back the measure.ncdem

Next, there will be a demand on behalf of the victims of slavery.  Then, descendants of Native Americans relocated to reservations.  Where does it stop? This could get expensive. 

8 thoughts on “Opening Pandora’s box

  1. What about reparations from the federal government for the brutal Reconstruction after the War Between the States, and the theft of southern property, often through the guise of taxation?

  2. If reparations are due, seems to me that it is the DEMOCRATIC PARTY that should pay, not the state of NC.

  3. I support the state paying out eugenics reparations to those victims. In that case, the state (quite wrongly) took specific actions in harming its citizens. The government of the state of NC committed that wrong and money seems like an appropriate method towards compensation for the damage the state directly caused.

    But Wilmington? That seems just silly. In that case, the ones engaged in the harmful conduct were either (1) The individual citizens who took it upon themselves to gather and overtake the legitimate government, and/or (2) The Democrat Party organization – the group who those people operated under.

    If the state Democrat Party has decided it would like to answer for the actions taken then by its members, and start paying people they think deserve it – they’re certainly free to do so. It’s their money *shrug*.

    I gotta be missing something… what is it about those events that make them think the state of NC was the responsible party?

  4. Hey… I want reparations for every failed government program that wasted my tax dollars!!! Why do people not understand that the “State” pays nothing, the citizens do. Nothing is free and taxing something doesn’t fix the problem nor make it right, nor does taking it from one to give to another regardless of the pretext.

  5. The government paying reparations with our tax dollars throws us onto an uncontrollable sled ride down a huge slippery slope. Yes, it is the opening of Pandora’s Box with the exception that what remained in Pandora’s Box after the evils escaped was the Spirit of Hope. I see no hope in solving any of our problems with the payment of reparations. There is no shortage of examples of political/social injustices in our history that groups of people can look to as worthy of reparations. Every society has these sorts of examples. They are the result of the natural unchecked powers of a majority over individuals. The Democratic kleptocracy has a tarnished history in NC with its pandering to ruling class special interests at the expense of individual freedoms (i.e., the sterilization program referenced). They incited divisive public emotions to perpetuate their power (as did many other states both in the South and the North). The tragic part of this is that the real motive to pay reparations (from Democrats, Republicans or both) is not to bring justice to past transgressions as its disguise would suggest. It is to pander once again to special interests for political gain and solidification of power. It is the purchasing of votes with our tax dollars much like the immense wealth redistribution programs do. The greatest way to bring justice to all those transgressed is to transparently LEARN from them and to ensure these injustices never happen in the future. The government should publicly recognize the past transgressions, apologize for the injustices and then focus on ensuring justice in the future. This justice means ensuring equality under the law for all individuals, firm enforcement of individual freedoms and zealous protection of property rights. We need to empower the invisible hand of the free market which naturally suppresses the political/social injustices in question. That is the Spirit of Hope I see at the bottom of Pandora’s open box…..

    1. Thank you Jeff. Well put. Most Native Americans put their lives back in order and many got off the reservation but you don’t hear them asking for reparations. There were many evils conducted starting in the 20’s by individuals of biased mentality. We can correct the past by not repeating the same scenarios.

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