The founder of Black Entertainment Television says the federal government should pay out $14 trillion to black Americans as reparations for slavery.
Robert Johnson, a billionaire, said Monday on CNBC that the wealth disparity in the U.S. and police brutality against blacks are the cause of violent protests across the country. To fix the problem, pay out trillions, Johnson said.
“Now is the time to go big,” he said. “Wealth transfer is what’s needed. Think about this. Since 200-plus-years or so of slavery, labor taken with no compensation, is a wealth transfer. Denial of access to education, which is a primary driver of accumulation of income and wealth, is a wealth transfer.”
Johnson said reparations would be the “affirmative action program of all time,” delivering a message to white Americans that “damages … are owed” for slavery and the decades of racism that followed. …
“I’m talking about cash. We are a society based on wealth. That’s the foundation of capitalism,” he said. “If we take that big leap, I am convinced that the problems that we confront today can be solved. But it takes a big, bold action, and $14 trillion in reparations for damages visited upon the heirs of slaves is an appropriate statement.”
$14 trillion is $42k per US citizen. Or abut $350k paid to each black person. Which, assuming it comes out of taxes paid paid by the 48% of the US population who pay taxes on net — overwhelmingly whites and Asians — is about $90k per taxpayer. (The average income in the US is about $45k per year, so that’s almost two years worth of work before tax for the average taxpayer.)
It’s all about the money. His proposal is that people who were never enslaved should be paid by people who never owned slaves or even benefited from slavery. Presumably based solely on skin color — or do blacks not descended from slaves miss out?
Blacks are, on average, poorer than other racial groups in the US. They work less, do jobs that are less valued, and are more likely to struggle at school. As data from the US Army for over a century shows, the average US African American scores 15 points lower on cognitive tests than the average US white citizen. Income is strongly correlated with the ability to score well on IQ tests. Which explains some of the income differential and “white privilege”. Asian privilege is even higher, but there is no political mileage in griping about that. What’s it going to take to end “white privilege’?
$14 trillion this time. How much next time?
Nice country you got there. Shame if anything should happen to it.