Rep. Jamaal Bowman has introduced a substantial $14 trillion #reparations bill, HR 414, aimed at addressing the enduring effects of slavery and systemic racism in the #UnitedStates. The proposed legislation encompasses a range of measures, including free college education at historically black colleges and universities (#HBCUs), support for the National Publishers Association and National Association of Black Broadcasters, and reinstating voting rights for individuals who are currently or have been incarcerated.
Bowman, representing parts of New York City, advocates for voting rights for the incarcerated and automatic re-enfranchisement upon release. The bill, which could distribute around $333,000 to each of the roughly 42 million African Americans, suggests a staggered payment approach over an extended period. Bowman emphasizes a comprehensive strategy to address disparities in housing, incarceration, education, and wealth, which he sees as foundational to American inequities.
The bill also acknowledges the immense economic contribution of 246 years of slavery to the U.S. economy and marks 35 years since the introduction of a federal commission to study reparations. While other local initiatives, like Evanston, Illinois' reparations for housing discrimination, are in motion, HR 414 faces significant opposition in Congress. Figures like Rep. Mondaire Jones and Westchester County Executive George Latimer express support for House Resolution 40, advocating for a reparations commission and a federal apology for slavery, while viewing HR 414 as more of a political statement with little prospect of passing.
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