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H.R.40 — 113th Congress (2013-2014) Reparations for Black People Complete Bill via Dr. Mona Love

by Black News and Views (Notes) on Sunday, May 5, 2013 at 6:20am

H.R.40 — 113th Congress (2013-2014) Reparations for Black People (Complete Document)

Reparations for Black people chains must be broken

FULL TITLE 

To acknowledge the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

 SUMMARY

Library of Congress 

1/3/2013–Introduced.Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African Americans Act – Establishes the Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African Americans to examine slavery and discrimination in the colonies and the …

HR 40 IH

 113th CONGRESS

 1st Session

 H. R. 40

 

To acknowledge the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

January 3, 2013
Mr. CONYERS introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To acknowledge the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

 

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the ‘Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act’. 

SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.

(a) Findings- The Congress finds that–

(1) approximately 4,000,000 Africans and their descendants were enslaved in the United States and colonies that became the United States from 1619 to 1865;

(2) the institution of slavery was constitutionally and statutorily sanctioned by the Government of the United States from 1789 through 1865;

(3) the slavery that flourished in the United States constituted an immoral and inhumane deprivation of Africans’ life, liberty, African citizenship rights, and cultural heritage, and denied them the fruits of their own labor; and

(4) sufficient inquiry has not been made into the effects of the institution of slavery on living African-Americans and society in the United States.

(b) Purpose- The purpose of this Act is to establish a commission to–

(1) examine the institution of slavery which existed from 1619 through 1865 within the United States and the colonies that became the United States, including the extent to which the Federal and State Governments constitutionally and statutorily supported the institution of slavery;

(2) examine de jure and de facto discrimination against freed slaves and their descendants from the end of the Civil War to the present, including economic, political, and social discrimination;

(3) examine the lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the discrimination described in paragraph (2) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States;

(4) recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission’s findings;

(5) recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission’s findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1) and (2); and

(6) submit to the Congress the results of such examination, together with such recommendations.

 SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT AND DUTIES.

(a) Establishment- There is established the Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans (hereinafter in this Act referred to as the ‘Commission’).

(b) Duties- The Commission shall perform the following duties:

(1) Examine the institution of slavery which existed within the United States and the colonies that became the United States from 1619 through 1865. The Commission’s examination shall include an examination of–

(A) the capture and procurement of Africans;

(B) the transport of Africans to the United States and the colonies that became the United States for the purpose of enslavement, including their treatment during transport;

(C) the sale and acquisition of Africans as chattel property in interstate and intrastate commerce; and

(D) the treatment of African slaves in the colonies and the United States, including the deprivation of their freedom, exploitation of their labor, and destruction of their culture, language, religion, and families.

(2) Examine the extent to which the Federal and State governments of the United States supported the institution of slavery in constitutional and statutory provisions, including the extent to which such governments prevented, opposed, or restricted efforts of freed African slaves to repatriate to their homeland.

(3) Examine Federal and State laws that discriminated against freed African slaves and their descendants during the period between the end of the Civil War and the present.

(4) Examine other forms of discrimination in the public and private sectors against freed African slaves and their descendants during the period between the end of the Civil War and the present.

(5) Examine the lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States.

(6) Recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission’s findings.

(7) Recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission’s findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4). In making such recommendations, the Commission shall address among other issues, the following questions:

(A) Whether the Government of the United States should offer a formal apology on behalf of the people of the United States for the perpetration of gross human rights violations on African slaves and their descendants.

(B) Whether African-Americans still suffer from the lingering effects of the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4).

(C) Whether, in consideration of the Commission’s findings, any form of compensation to the descendants of African slaves is warranted.

(D) If the Commission finds that such compensation is warranted, what should be the amount of compensation, what form of compensation should be awarded, and who should be eligible for such compensation.

(c) Report to Congress- The Commission shall submit a written report of its findings and recommendations to the Congress not later than the date which is one year after the date of the first meeting of the Commission held pursuant to section 4(c).

 

SEC. 4. MEMBERSHIP.

(a) Number and Appointment- (1) The Commission shall be composed of 7 members, who shall be appointed, within 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, as follows:

(A) Three members shall be appointed by the President.

(B) Three members shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

(C) One member shall be appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate.

(2) All members of the Commission shall be persons who are especially qualified to serve on the Commission by virtue of their education, training, or experience, particularly in the field of African-American studies.

(b) Terms- The term of office for members shall be for the life of the Commission. A vacancy in the Commission shall not affect the powers of the Commission and shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.

(c) First Meeting- The President shall call the first meeting of the Commission within 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act or within 30 days after the date on which legislation is enacted making appropriations to carry out this Act, whichever date is later.

(d) Quorum- Four members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may hold hearings.

(e) Chair and Vice Chair- The Commission shall elect a Chair and Vice Chair from among its members. The term of office of each shall be for the life of the Commission.

(f) Compensation- (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), each member of the Commission shall receive compensation at the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS-18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code, for each day, including travel time, during which he or she is engaged in the actual performance of duties vested in the Commission.

(2) A member of the Commission who is a full-time officer or employee of the United States or a Member of Congress shall receive no additional pay, allowances, or benefits by reason of his or her service to the Commission.

(3) All members of the Commission shall be reimbursed for travel, subsistence, and other necessary expenses incurred by them in the performance of their duties to the extent authorized by chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code.

 

SEC. 5. POWERS OF THE COMMISSION.

(a) Hearings and Sessions- The Commission may, for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, hold such hearings and sit and act at such times and at such places in the United States, and request the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memoranda, papers, and documents, as the Commission considers appropriate. The Commission may request the Attorney General to invoke the aid of an appropriate United States district court to require, by subpoena or otherwise, such attendance, testimony, or production.

(b) Powers of Subcommittees and Members- Any subcommittee or member of the Commission may, if authorized by the Commission, take any action which the Commission is authorized to take by this section.

(c) Obtaining Official Data- The Commission may acquire directly from the head of any department, agency, or instrumentality of the executive branch of the Government, available information which the Commission considers useful in the discharge of its duties. All departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the executive branch of the Government shall cooperate with the Commission with respect to such information and shall furnish all information requested by the Commission to the extent permitted by law.

 

SEC. 6. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

(a) Staff- The Commission may, without regard to section 5311(b) of title 5, United States Code, appoint and fix the compensation of such personnel as the Commission considers appropriate.

(b) Applicability of Certain Civil Service Laws- The staff of the Commission may be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that the compensation of any employee of the Commission may not exceed a rate equal to the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS-18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code.

(c) Experts and Consultants- The Commission may procure the services of experts and consultants in accordance with the provisions of section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, but at rates for individuals not to exceed the daily equivalent of the highest rate payable under section 5332 of such title.

(d) Administrative Support Services- The Commission may enter into agreements with the Administrator of General Services for procurement of financial and administrative services necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission. Payment for such services shall be made by reimbursement from funds of the Commission in such amounts as may be agreed upon by the Chairman of the Commission and the Administrator.

(e) Contracts- The Commission may–

(1) procure supplies, services, and property by contract in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts; and

(2) enter into contracts with departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the Federal Government, State agencies, and private firms, institutions, and agencies, for the conduct of research or surveys, the preparation of reports, and other activities necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission, to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts.

 

SEC. 7. TERMINATION.

The Commission shall terminate 90 days after the date on which the Commission submits its report to the Congress under section 3(c).

 

SEC. 8. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

To carry out the provisions of this Act, there are authorized to be appropriated $8,000,000.

STATUSThis bill was assigned to a congressional committee on January 3, 2013, which will consider it before possibly sending it on to the House or Senate as a whole. 

PROGRESS
Introduced   Jan 03, 2013
Referred to Committee  Jan 03, 2013
Reported by Committee…
Passed House…
Passed Senate…
Signed by the President…

PROGNOSIS2% chance of getting past committee.
0% chance of being enacted.

Only 11% of House bills made it past committee and only 3% were enacted in 2011–2013. [show factors |methodology]

COSPONSORS
noneCOMMITTEESHouse Judiciary↪ The Constitution

 

 

The committee chair determines whether a bill will move past the committee stage.

Source: The Library of Congress via Dr. Mona Love for Black News and Views

 

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The Beginning of Many Discussions on Reparations for African Americans arranged by Dr. Mona Love

by Black News and Views (Notes) on Saturday, May 4, 2013 at 11:08pm
 

The Slavery Issue: Reparations for African Americans

                African Americans have been fighting for their rights in America since 1783, with the abolitionists starting a movement to emancipate slaves and to end the slave trade in the Americas and the European countries. African slaves were brought over to America on white European ships and were sold as property instead of being thought of as human beings. Now that it’s the 21st century, and slavery no longer exists anymore, what has been done for those four million African Americans who were enslaved to help increase the value of one of the world’s riches countries. The Native American Indians and the Japanese-Americans  ave both received reparations from the government for the treatment they received in intern camps during World War II. So, shouldn’t there have been something done for the African American slaves to receive once emancipated? Former slaves were promised forty acres and a mule, but this act was soon rescinded. Some people have said that the American Civil War was fought to end slavery, which should have been payment enough. Although, many white American soldiers lost their lives in that battle, many fail to realize that by 1865, nearly 180,000 black soldiers had enlisted in the Union’s army. Not only were whites losing their lives in that battle, but some African Americans were too. Now that African Americans are free and have some of the same rights and opportunities as white Americans, many people have begun to look at what was ever done for the African American slaves. That is how the idea for reparations for African Americans came about. When dealing with this subject, many questions arise like: “Why pay African Americans reparations,” “Who is going to pay African Americans reparations,” and “Who if anyone will receive payment?” Now that these questions have been asked, isn’t it time for some real answers?

Reparations have to be in the trillions of dollars ~ Dr. Mona Love for Black News and Views

African Americans should be paid reparations for six reasons, one being the fact that African Americans were slaves for more than 250 years. This was 250 years of free labor. Slaves were never paid for their work. Once freed, slaves became sharecroppers and barely received payment then. Freed slaves were promised forty acres of land and a mule, but this order was withdrawn in 1869.

The second reason African Americans should be paid reparations is for the years of torture they received both during slavery and after. African Americans were imprisoned, whipped, branded, and even put to death. African American men were the biggest threat to white slave owners, and were often the targets of many killings and beatings. Freed slaves were also mistreated, and even burned alive for violating the law. I believe today that African American men are still targeted by Caucasian authorities.

The third reason African Americans should be paid reparations is for the way African American women were treated. Many African American women were used for breeding and for the slave masters personal use. When using the phrase “personal use,” I mean the slave master would have his choice of what African American woman he wanted to have sex with whether she was single or married. Many African American women were raped by their white slave masters. Some women even bore their slave master’s children.

The forth reason African Americans should be paid reparations is for the personal injury and the stereotypes African Americans received as a race. From the start, many African Americans were made fun of as they were being sold. The term “Playing the Dozens,” comes from the white American slave traders trying to sell slaves. By making fun of a slave’s physical defects or flaws, slave traders used this game as a selling pitch. Many stereotypes were formed about African Americans once they got to America. Many white Europeans saw Africans as an inferior race, as though Africans came from a country with no structure or religion. With that state of mind, Europeans decided Africans were free for the taking and could be made to do whatever was pleasing.

The fifth reason African Americans should be paid reparations is because Africans were taken, nevertheless kidnapped from their country. They were brought over to America, and made to live in another man’s habitat. Africans had their own culture and their own society in Africa. To take that from them was wrong. The white Europeans came in and took America from the Indians, and now they’ve taken almost a whole population from Africa. These Africans were uprooted from their homeland and made to live and survive in a foreign land. Not even the white Europeans could survive when they first got to America.

The sixth reason reparation should be paid to African Americans is because African Americans were still being oppressed once emancipated. Although free, African Americans were still treated cruelly. None of the beatings stopped, nor did any of the killings or the burnings. Well into the 20th century, African Americans were still being treated unfairly. With the Civil Rights Movement and the assassinations of many black activists, reparations should not only be paid to slaves but to their descendants as well. Although, enslaved for more than 250 years, the African Americans would continue to be oppressed for years to come.

The Europeans, Dutch, Irish, British, and Spaniards should all have to pay African American slaves for reparations. All of these countries have been known to use African slaves and the colonies that they established here in America used African slaves as well. The eleven southern states, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Florida, and Arkansas all refused to emancipate their slaves. These eleven states should not only pay African American slaves, but their descendants also. The descendants need to be paid because, although free, they were still oppressed and treated very cruelly in many of these states.

The eleven southern states formed their own Confederacy in rebellion to the Union. The Union president, Abraham Lincoln, was an anti-slavery Republican. In fear of losing their slaves, the eleven southern states formed the Confederate States of America. The Confederate States of America and the U.S. Federal Government, the Union, would soon fight a war over issues like doctrine of states’ rights, trade and tariffs, and slavery. This war would be known as the American Civil War or the War Between the States. In April of 1865, the Union defeated the Confederate States of America, winning the war and abolishing slavery throughout the South.

Although slavery was abolished, the entire east and southern coast of America still benefitted from sharecroppers. Slave trading, along with sharecropping would become very profitable in America Whether sharecroppers picked cotton in the cotton fields, worked in the tobacco fields, or did all the manual work that white Americans did not want to do, they still benefitted.

Some people try to focus on the fact that other countries had slaves, but their slaves were probably native to the country that they were made to work for, not shipped in and stolen from their homeland. The matter at hand is that the United States of American was a slave holding country. Although not all fifty states participated in slavery, America as a country gained profit from free labor, tobacco, and cotton, all coming from the work of slaves.

If African Americans were to receive reparations for the years that slavery existed, that money should go to something constructive like fully paid or partially paid scholarships for college. Reparations could be used on better school systems for black inner city schools, more African American private schools, more college grants that are available to African Americans, better drug awareness classes and sex education classes, and more internship programs available to African Americans.

reparations is not open for debate ~ Dr. Mona Love

                Our country’s black education levels are well below the level of white schools. African American schools should be equal in levels of education as those of white schools. A high school graduate level of education from a black school was once based on an eighth grade level, while a high school graduate from a white school was based on an eleventh grade level. Realistically thinking, a person with an eighth grade education will never compare to a person who graduated with an eleventh grade education. 

                Our country profited from slavery, and in doing so, our country should have to pay for it. Many European countries also profited from slavery when they established their colonies here. So those countries should have to contribute something for their use of slaves. Although America is now a multi ethnic nation, that still does not change the fact that America used slaves, and was partially built off the work of African American slaves. 

                African Americans continued to suffer from hardship due to oppression. You would think that the African Americans would have something to look forward to once freed, but the African Americans would soon sustain an even harder life due to the Great Depression. 

                During the late 1800s to the early to mid 1900s, only a few African Americans received a high school diploma, and the rest dropped out of school to help support their families. So if the total amount of reparations to be paid to African Americans is more than four trillion dollars, then that money should go to funding college tuition and more educational programs for African Americans. Although it is a great possibility that African Americans will never see any money physically, it would be great to know that something is being done for the African Americans that were slaves, and that the education systems in African American schools were to provide monetary improvements for our future generations. 

                Whether African Americans should be paid reparations or not, is a highly debatable issue. I think something should be done to close the education gap between white schools and black schools. That gap needs to be closed because of the lack of education African Americans receive. African American slaves were not allowed to know how to read and write, for years the level of education at African American schools has been below the level of those at white schools. For years, African American schools have received the old, used, and out dated school books from white schools. So from the beginning African Americans were taught on a lower level. 

                Many of today’s African American students are not able to pass the SAT’s that are given at schools today, and some students don’t score high enough to get their school out of academic probation. Many African American high school seniors aren’t able to pass the high school exit exam, and when it comes time to pass college entrance exams, they won’t be able to do that either. African Americans that attend these inner city schools aren’t being taught on the levels needed to pass these required tests. And when the schools don’t pass the SAT’s, they are put on academic probation until their test scores increase. Once a school is put on academic probation, the regular required school work is pushed under the table and test preparation begins. 

                Most schools that are put on academic probation, are the inner city schools that African Americans attended. Many people like to look at the money that most white or suburban schools have, if African Americans were to receive some type of payment for reparations, the schools should be the first place for the money to go. I do believe that the amount of money a school district has weighs heavy on how well a school does today. Better school facilities, teachers, books, vocational classes, and more school buses, to get the students to school, will motivate the students to do better. Classes should be given to the parents to teach them the new skills that their children are learning at school, because a parent can’t teach their child something if they don’t know it. 

                Since the idea for reparations for African Americans came about, a lot of negative input has stirred up. A lot of people can always tell you why something is bad, especially if something has to come out of their pockets. I think the thing I read that upset me the most was an offer for a free plane ticket back to Africa. I asked myself, “is that it?” First I thought, all you can give me is a plane ticket to Africa, what is it, an educational field trip or something? But that is beside the point, many people are going to have different opinions on such a hot topic. 

                If reparations were to be paid, I think it would be an acceptable apology, because at least something would have been done to make amends. No one could ever say that slave work was done for nothing. I think if reparations were to be paid, we would still be where we are today. Because in a way we are healed, but we are still divided. Looking at the situation closer, whether you’re white or black, if you have accepted that other race, and if reparations were paid that shouldn’t divide the two. But on the other hand, if you haven’t accepted the African Americans, or if the African Americans haven’t accepted the white Americans, then yes, that would further divide us. But once African Americans and white Americans come together, this issue will be solved. At least we would be on the same level and things would be based on one’s abilities, and not the color of their skin. But the oppression that African Americans went through will never be forgotten, nor can it be made up for. Once you have done wrong, as wrong as slavery was, there is no going back and trying to right that wrong, because some people will never let you forget, where they think your status is in life, whether if it’s above them or below them. 

by http://students.cis.uab.edu/julielj/TheSlaveryIssue.html
Via Black News and Views Dr. Mona Love

 

 

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THE BIGGEST ISSUE FACING OUR BLACK COMMUNITY IS THE LACK OF FATHERS RAISING THEIR CHILDREN

by Black News and Views (Notes) on Friday, May 3, 2013 at 5:24am
 

It is said that one of the hardest things to accomplish in the black community is getting the Black man to step up and be a father. That to me is even more sorry than blacks killing each other. Perhaps if Black father’s were there in the homes there would not be all this killing and Black on Black violence going on in the first place. Black man your child NEEDS YOU! Your wife and mother of your child needs! Your community needs you Black man! Rise of from the fucking pit of despair, gird your loins with strength and mount up on wings of eagles return to your first love YOUR FAMILY!!!

Love from the Black Man for His Own Children and Family will Heal the Black Community

Telling a person the facts doesn’t spark change – change comes when you get up of your ass and make it. Be a Father. Get up and set your intentions on it and return to your place of power. As long as you sit down and ignore the problem the real solution will NEVER be accomplished. You can be a father from a jail cell, you can be a father from a shelter, you can be a father even if you remarried and or dating someone else there is no excuse.

Change is need in our relationship and with the way we deal with our families

by Dr. Mona Love

 

 

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The 2012 Dropping of the Veil and the Rise of Black Consciousness
by Black News and Views (Notes) on Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 10:40pm
Hotep!

With all the talk of the Mayan doom’s day and the alleged destruction of the planet we seemed to miss the energetic shift and unveiling of all things hidden. The Ancients would never have missed an event such as that because they understood the symbolism of EVERYTHING for they communicated in symbols, higher thoughts, deeper spirituality. For me personally as a Black woman things that seemed to be hidden or veiled began dropping away in the latter part of the year and continue on through the beginning of this year. The frequency and vibration is different there is a serious progression in mindset and purpose. Now is a time to walk in your destiny and step out in faith…

The Phoenix will always rise from the ashes and the Black man shall rise from his~ Ashe~ Mona Love

The Phoenix will always rise from the ashes and the Black man shall rise from his~ Ashe~ Mona Love

 

 

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