In January, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said reparations for slavery was impractical and “very divisive.”
But now, only three months later, has Bernie sort of backtracked on his statements and has mentioned giving Black people reparations in the form of investments into poverty-stricken communities.
Bernie Sanders committed tonight to formally apologizing for slavery on behalf of the United States if he becomes president.
Sanders told heavily black audience that Tindley Temple United Methodist Church, ‘There’s nothing that anybody can do to undo the deaths and misery, how many people we don’t even know who died on the way over here in the ships.’
But the United States has to make an attempt to ‘wipe the slate clean’ by acknowledging the truth, he said after an audience member asked him point blank if he’d offer a presidential-level apology and he said, ‘Yes.’
And while the U.S. Senator does not support reparations in the form of a check for the inhumane treatment of Africans before the end of the Civil War, he does believe the government should invest in low-income communities, many of which are black, and he reiterated that point tonight.
He directed their attention to remarks he’d already made that evening about the problems plaguing black areas and said, ‘As everybody in this room knows, what were seeing in many African-American communities, outrageously high levels of unemployment, inadequate education, inadequate healthcare.
‘I think what we have got to do as a nation is invest in those communities who need that…investment the most.’
Communities with ‘long-term structural’ issues should ‘become the communities that receive the highest priority for federal’ assistance, he argued.
‘Let us make sure that in every way, federal funding goes to those communities who need it the most,’ Sanders, said, adding that ‘in most cases, though’ those areas are inhabited by blacks.