Why the Descendants of American Slaves Should Not Receive Reparations Essay

User Generated




Should the descendants of American slaves receive reparations?

post an essay on either the Provide Reparations or the Deny Reparations forums, presenting arguments and facts that support your conclusion.

Unformatted Attachment Preview

http://nyti.ms/1qwGoor In 1838, the Jesuit priests who ran the country’s top Catholic university needed money to keep it alive. Now comes the task of making amends. By RACHEL L. SWARNS APRIL 16, 2016 WASHINGTON — The human cargo was loaded on ships at a bustling wharf in the nation’s capital, destined for the plantations of the Deep South. Some slaves pleaded for rosaries as they were rounded up, praying for deliverance. But on this day, in the fall of 1838, no one was spared: not the 2-month-old baby and her mother, not the field hands, not the shoemaker and not Cornelius Hawkins, who was about 13 years old when he was forced onboard. Their panic and desperation would be mostly forgotten for more than a century. But this was no ordinary slave sale. The enslaved AfricanAmericans had belonged to the nation’s most prominent Jesuit priests. And they were sold, along with scores of others, to help secure the future of the premier Catholic institution of higher learning at the time, known today as Georgetown University. Now, with racial protests roiling college campuses, an unusual collection of Georgetown professors, students, alumni and genealogists is trying to find out what happened to those 272 men, women and children. And they are confronting a particularly wrenching question: What, if anything, is owed to the descendants of slaves who were sold to help ensure the college’s survival? More than a dozen universities — including Brown, Columbia, Harvard and the University of Virginia — have publicly recognized their ties to slavery and the slave trade. But the 1838 slave sale organized by the Jesuits, who founded and ran Georgetown, stands out for its sheer size, historians say. At Georgetown, slavery and scholarship were inextricably linked. The college relied on Jesuit plantations in Maryland to help finance its operations, university officials say. (Slaves were often donated by prosperous parishioners.) And the 1838 sale — worth about $3.3 million in today’s dollars — was organized by two of Georgetown’s early presidents, both Jesuit priests. Some of that money helped to pay off the debts of the struggling college. “The university itself owes its existence to this history,” said Adam Rothman, a historian at Georgetown and a member of a university working group that is studying ways for the institution to acknowledge and try to make amends for its tangled roots in slavery. Although the working group was established in August, it was student demonstrations at Georgetown in the fall that helped to galvanize alumni and gave new urgency to the administration’s efforts. The students organized a protest and a sit-in, using the hashtag #GU272 for the slaves who were sold. In November, the university agreed to remove the names of the Rev. Thomas F. Mulledy and the Rev. William McSherry, the college presidents involved in the sale, from two campus buildings. An alumnus, following the protest from afar, wondered if more needed to be done. That alumnus, Richard J. Cellini, the chief executive of a technology company and a practicing Catholic, was troubled that neither the Jesuits nor university officials had tried to trace the lives of the enslaved African-Americans or compensate their progeny. Mr. Cellini is an unlikely racial crusader. A white man, he admitted that he had never spent much time thinking about slavery or AfricanAmerican history. But he said he could not stop thinking about the slaves, whose names had been in Georgetown’s archives for decades. “This is not a disembodied group of people, who are nameless and faceless,” said Mr. Cellini, 52, whose company, Briefcase Analytics, is based in Cambridge, Mass. “These are real people with real names and real descendants.” Within two weeks, Mr. Cellini had set up a nonprofit, the Georgetown Memory Project, hired eight genealogists and raised more than $10,000 from fellow alumni to finance their research. Dr. Rothman, the Georgetown historian, heard about Mr. Cellini’s efforts and let him know that he and several of his students were also tracing the slaves. Soon, the two men and their teams were working on parallel tracks. What has emerged from their research, and that of other scholars, is a glimpse of an insular world dominated by priests who required their slaves to attend Mass for the sake of their salvation, but also whipped and sold some of them. The records describe runaways, harsh plantation conditions and the anguish voiced by some Jesuits over their participation in a system of forced servitude. “A microcosm of the whole history of American slavery,” Dr. Rothman said. The enslaved were grandmothers and grandfathers, carpenters and blacksmiths, pregnant women and anxious fathers, children and infants, who were fearful, bewildered and despairing as they saw their families and communities ripped apart by the sale of 1838. The researchers have used archival records to follow their footsteps, from the Jesuit plantations in Maryland, to the docks of New Orleans, to three plantations west and south of Baton Rouge, La. The hope was to eventually identify the slaves’ descendants. By the end of December, one of Mr. Cellini’s genealogists felt confident that she had found a strong test case: the family of the boy, Cornelius Hawkins. Broken Promises There are no surviving images of Cornelius, no letters or journals that offer a look into his last hours on a Jesuit plantation in Maryland. He was not yet five feet tall when he sailed onboard the Katharine Jackson, one of several vessels that carried the slaves to the port of New Orleans. An inspector scrutinized the cargo on Dec. 6, 1838. “Examined and found correct,” he wrote of Cornelius and the 129 other people he found on the ship. The notation betrayed no hint of the turmoil on board. But priests at the Jesuit plantations recounted the panic and fear they witnessed when the slaves departed. Some children were sold without their parents, records show, and slaves were “dragged off by force to the ship,” the Rev. Thomas Lilly reported. Others, including two of Cornelius’s uncles, ran away before they could be captured. But few were lucky enough to escape. The Rev. Peter Havermans wrote of an elderly woman who fell to her knees, begging to know what she had done to deserve such a fate, according to Robert Emmett Curran, a retired Georgetown historian who described eyewitness accounts of the sale in his research. Cornelius’s extended family was split, with his aunt Nelly and her daughters shipped to one plantation, and his uncle James and his wife and children sent to another, records show. At the time, the Catholic Church did not view slaveholding as immoral, said the Rev. Thomas R. Murphy, a historian at Seattle University who has written a book about the Jesuits and slavery. The Jesuits had sold off individual slaves before. As early as the 1780s, Dr. Rothman found, they openly discussed the need to cull their stock of human beings. But the decision to sell virtually all of their enslaved African-Americans in the 1830s left some priests deeply troubled. They worried that new owners might not allow the slaves to practice their Catholic faith. They also knew that life on plantations in the Deep South was notoriously brutal, and feared that families might end up being separated and resold. “It would be better to suffer financial disaster than suffer the loss of our souls with the sale of the slaves,” wrote the Rev. Jan Roothaan, who headed the Jesuits’ international organization from Rome and was initially reluctant to authorize the sale. But he was persuaded to reconsider by several prominent Jesuits, including Father Mulledy, then the influential president of Georgetown who had overseen its expansion, and Father McSherry, who was in charge of the Jesuits’ Maryland mission. (The two men would swap positions by 1838.) Mismanaged and inefficient, the Maryland plantations no longer offered a reliable source of income for Georgetown College, which had been founded in 1789. It would not survive, Father Mulledy feared, without an influx of cash. So in June 1838, he negotiated a deal with Henry Johnson, a member of the House of Representatives, and Jesse Batey, a landowner in Louisiana, to sell Cornelius and the others. Father Mulledy promised his superiors that the slaves would continue to practice their religion. Families would not be separated. And the money raised by the sale would not be used to pay off debt or for operating expenses. None of those conditions were met, university officials said. Father Mulledy took most of the down payment he received from the sale — about $500,000 in today’s dollars — and used it to help pay off the debts that Georgetown had incurred under his leadership. In the uproar that followed, he was called to Rome and reassigned. The next year, Pope Gregory XVI explicitly barred Catholics from engaging in “this traffic in Blacks … no matter what pretext or excuse.” But the pope’s order, which did not explicitly address slave ownership or private sales like the one organized by the Jesuits, offered scant comfort to Cornelius and the other slaves. By the 1840s, word was trickling back to Washington that the slaves’ new owners had broken their promises. Some slaves suffered at the hands of a cruel overseer. Roughly two-thirds of the Jesuits’ former slaves — including Cornelius and his family — had been shipped to two plantations so distant from churches that “they never see a Catholic priest,” the Rev. James Van de Velde, a Jesuit who visited Louisiana, wrote in a letter in 1848. Father Van de Velde begged Jesuit leaders to send money for the construction of a church that would “provide for the salvation of those poor people, who are now utterly neglected.” He addressed his concerns to Father Mulledy, who three years earlier had returned to his post as president of Georgetown. There is no indication that he received any response. A Familiar Name African-Americans are often a fleeting presence in the documents of the 1800s. Enslaved, marginalized and forced into illiteracy by laws that prohibited them from learning to read and write, many seem like ghosts who pass through this world without leaving a trace. After the sale, Cornelius vanishes from the public record until 1851 when his trail finally picks back up on a cotton plantation near Maringouin, La. His owner, Mr. Batey, had died, and Cornelius appeared on the plantation’s inventory, which included 27 mules and horses, 32 hogs, two ox carts and scores of other slaves. He was valued at $900. (“Valuable Plantation and Negroes for Sale,” read one newspaper advertisement in 1852.) The plantation would be sold again and again and again, records show, but Cornelius’s family remained intact. In 1870, he appeared in the census for the first time. He was about 48 then, a father, a husband, a farm laborer and, finally, a free man. He might have disappeared from view again for a time, save for something few could have counted on: his deep, abiding faith. It was his Catholicism, born on the Jesuit plantations of his childhood, that would provide researchers with a road map to his descendants. Cornelius had originally been shipped to a plantation so far from a church that he had married in a civil ceremony. But six years after he appeared in the census, and about three decades after the birth of his first child, he renewed his wedding vows with the blessing of a priest. His children and grandchildren also embraced the Catholic church. So Judy Riffel, one of the genealogists hired by Mr. Cellini, began following a chain of weddings and births, baptisms and burials. The church records helped lead to a 69-year-old woman in Baton Rouge named Maxine Crump. Ms. Crump, a retired television news anchor, was driving to Maringouin, her hometown, in early February when her cellphone rang. Mr. Cellini was on the line. She listened, stunned, as he told her about her great-great-grandfather, Cornelius Hawkins, who had labored on a plantation just a few miles from where she grew up. She found out about the Jesuits and Georgetown and the sea voyage to Louisiana. And she learned that Cornelius had worked the soil of a 2,800-acre estate that straddled the Bayou Maringouin. All of this was new to Ms. Crump, except for the name Cornelius — or Neely, as Cornelius was known. The name had been passed down from generation to generation in her family. Her great-uncle had the name, as did one of her cousins. Now, for the first time, Ms. Crump understood its origins. “Oh my God,” she said. “Oh my God.” Ms. Crump is a familiar figure in Baton Rouge. She was the city’s first black woman television anchor. She runs a nonprofit, Dialogue on Race Louisiana, that offers educational programs on institutional racism and ways to combat it. She prides herself on being unflappable. But the revelations about her lineage — and the church she grew up in — have unleashed a swirl of emotions. She is outraged that the church’s leaders sanctioned the buying and selling of slaves, and that Georgetown profited from the sale of her ancestors. She feels great sadness as she envisions Cornelius as a young boy, torn from everything he knew. ‘Now They Are Real to Me’ Mr. Cellini, whose genealogists have already traced more than 200 of the slaves from Maryland to Louisiana, believes there may be thousands of living descendants. He has contacted a few, including Patricia Bayonne-Johnson, president of the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society in Spokane, who is helping to track the Jesuit slaves with her group. (Ms. Bayonne-Johnson discovered her connection through an earlier effort by the university to publish records online about the Jesuit plantations.) Meanwhile, Georgetown’s working group has been weighing whether the university should apologize for profiting from slave labor, create a memorial to those enslaved and provide scholarships for their descendants, among other possibilities, said Dr. Rothman, the historian. “It’s hard to know what could possibly reconcile a history like this,” he said. “What can you do to make amends?” Ms. Crump, 69, has been asking herself that question, too. She does not put much stock in what she describes as “casual institutional apologies.” But she would like to see a scholarship program that would bring the slaves’ descendants to Georgetown as students. And she would like to see Cornelius’s name, and those of his parents and children, inscribed on a memorial on campus. Her ancestors, once amorphous and invisible, are finally taking shape in her mind. There is joy in that, she said, exhilaration even. “Now they are real to me,” she said, “more real every day.” She still wants to know more about Cornelius’s beginnings, and about his life as a free man. But when Ms. Riffel, the genealogist, told her where she thought he was buried, Ms. Crump knew exactly where to go. The two women drove on the narrow roads that line the green, rippling sugar cane fields in Iberville Parish. There was no need for a map. They were heading to the only Catholic cemetery in Maringouin. They found the last physical marker of Cornelius’s journey at the Immaculate Heart of Mary cemetery, where Ms. Crump’s father, grandmother and great-grandfather are also buried. The worn gravestone had toppled, but the wording was plain: “Neely Hawkins Died April 16, 1902.” A version of this article appears in print on April 17, 2016, on page A1 of the New York edition with the headline: Georgetown Confronts Its Role in Nation’s Slave Trade. © 2016 The New York Times Company Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 1 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... Your Weekly Address Speeches & Remarks Press Briefings Statements & Releases White House Schedule Presidential Actions Executive Orders Presidential Memoranda Proclamations Legislation Pending Legislation Signed Legislation Vetoed Legislation Nominations & Appointments Disclosures The White House Office of the First Lady For Immediate Release October 13, 2016 SHARE THIS: 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 2 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 3 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 4 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 5 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 6 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 7 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 8 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 9 of 10 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Remarks by the First Lady at Hillary for America Campaign Event in M... 10 of 10 HOME BRIEFING ROOM En Español ISSUES Accessibility https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/10/13/remarks-first-l... THE ADMINISTRATION Copyright Information PARTICIPATE Privacy Policy 1600 PENN USA.gov 10/16/2016 12:57 PM Georgetown University Plans Steps to Atone for Slave Past - The New Y... 1 of 4 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/02/us/slaves-georgetown-university.ht... http://nyti.ms/2c3j7Y5 U.S. Georgetown University Plans Steps to Atone for Slave Past By RACHEL L. SWARNS SEPT. 1, 2016 Nearly two centuries after Georgetown University profited from the sale of 272 slaves, it will embark on a series of steps to atone for the past, including awarding preferential status in the admissions process to descendants of the enslaved, officials said on Wednesday. Georgetown’s president, John J. DeGioia, who will discuss the measures in a speech on Thursday afternoon, also plans to offer a formal apology, create an institute for the study of slavery and erect a public memorial to the slaves whose labor benefited the institution, including those who were sold in 1838 to help keep the university afloat. In addition, two campus buildings will be renamed — one for an enslaved African-American man and the other for an African-American educator who belonged to a Catholic religious order. So far, Mr. DeGioia’s plan does not include a provision for offering scholarships to descendants, a possibility that was raised by a university committee whose recommendations were released on Thursday morning. The committee, however, stopped short of calling on the university to provide such financial assistance, as well as admissions preference. 9/1/2016 7:46 AM Georgetown University Plans Steps to Atone for Slave Past - The New Y... 2 of 4 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/02/us/slaves-georgetown-university.ht... Mr. DeGioa’s decision to offer an advantage in admissions to descendants, similar to that offered to the children and grandchildren of alumni, is unprecedented, historians say. The preference will be offered to the descendants of all the slaves whose labor benefited Georgetown, not just the men, women and children sold in 1838. More than a dozen universities — including Brown, Harvard and the University of Virginia — have publicly recognized their ties to slavery and the slave trade. But Craig Steven Wilder and Alfred L. Brophy, two historians who have studied universities and slavery, said they knew of none that had offered preferential status in admissions to the descendants of slaves. Professor Wilder, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said Mr. DeGioia’s plans to address Georgetown’s history go beyond any initiatives enacted by a university in the past 10 years. “It goes farther than just about any institution,” he said. “I think it’s to Georgetown’s credit. It’s taking steps that a lot of universities have been reluctant to take.” But whether the initiatives result in meaningful change remains to be seen, he said. Professor Wilder cautioned that the significance of the preferential status in admissions would rest heavily on the degree to which Georgetown invested in outreach to descendants, including identifying them, making sure they are aware of the benefit’s existence and actively recruiting them to the university. “The question of how effective or meaningful this is going to be will only be answered over time,” Professor Wilder said. Mr. DeGioia’s plan, which builds on the recommendations of the committee that he convened last year, represents the university’s first systematic effort to address its roots in slavery. Georgetown, which was founded and run by Jesuit priests in 1789, relied on the Jesuit plantations in Maryland — and the sale of produce and slaves — to finance its operations. The 1838 sale, worth about $3.3 million in today’s dollars, was organized by two of Georgetown’s early presidents, both Jesuits. A portion of the profit, about $500,000, was used to help pay off Georgetown’s debts at a time when the college 9/1/2016 7:46 AM Georgetown University Plans Steps to Atone for Slave Past - The New Y... 3 of 4 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/02/us/slaves-georgetown-university.ht... was struggling financially. The slaves were uprooted from the Maryland plantations and shipped to estates in Louisiana. Mr. DeGioia said he planned to apologize for the wrongs of the past “within the framework of the Catholic tradition,” by offering what he described as a Mass of reconciliation in partnership with the Jesuit leadership in the United States and the Archdiocese of Washington. “We know we’ve got work to do, and we’re going to take those steps to do so,” Mr. DeGioia said in an interview on Wednesday. The two buildings being renamed originally paid tribute to the Rev. Thomas F. Mulledy and the Rev. William McSherry, the college presidents involved in the 1838 sale. Now one will be called Isaac Hall to commemorate the life of Isaac, one of the slaves shipped to Louisiana in 1838, and the other Anne Marie Becraft Hall, in honor of a 19th-century educator who founded a school for black girls in Washington. “It needs to be a part of our living history,” Mr. DeGioia said. Mr. DeGioia assembled his working group of scholars, administrators, students and alumni last September, asking them to consider how the university should address its history. Their work took on greater urgency in November in the wake of student demonstrations. In April, The New York Times published an article tracing the life of one of the slaves, Cornelius Hawkins, and his modern-day descendants. In its 102-page report, the committee said that the university’s dependence on slavery was deeper and broader than originally believed. Slave labor and slave sales were envisioned as part of the financing model of the college even before the doors opened in 1789. And slaves were not only forced to work on the Jesuit plantations. Some also toiled on campus, hired from students and other wealthy people. The committee said that it was likely that all of the earliest buildings on campus — including the ones named for the university leaders who orchestrated the 1838 sale — were built with slave labor. 9/1/2016 7:46 AM Georgetown University Plans Steps to Atone for Slave Past - The New Y... 4 of 4 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/02/us/slaves-georgetown-university.ht... More historical research needs to be done, the committee said, and that will be coordinated by the new research center, the Institute for the Study of Slavery and its Legacies. The university has already selected the program director for the institute, which will also support Mr. DeGioia’s plans to deepen engagement with descendants of the enslaved. Mr. DeGioia, who met with dozens of descendants this summer, plans to establish a working group for the creation of the public memorial that will include descendants. He also plans, among other efforts, to provide descendants with access to genealogical information housed in the university’s archives. “All of these will have a substantial financial impact,” said Mr. DeGioia, who believes that Georgetown’s philanthropic community will support his initiatives. “I’m very confident that will not be a constraint.” Karran Harper Royal, a descendant of slaves sold in 1838, said that she appreciated the decision to rename the buildings and to create a memorial. But she said the initiatives fell far short of what descendants had hoped for. She said that Georgetown should have offered scholarships to descendants and included them on the committee that developed the recommendations, adding that she and others “felt the sting” of not being formally invited to Mr. DeGioia’s speech this afternoon. “It has to go much farther,” said Ms. Harper Royal, who is an organizer of a group of descendants. “They’re calling us family. Well, I’m from New Orleans and when we have a gathering, family’s invited.” © 2016 The New York Times Company 9/1/2016 7:46 AM Georgetown University, Learning From Its Sins - The New York Times 1 of 3 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/01/opinion/georgetown-university-lear... http://nyti.ms/2c98TTb The Opinion Pages | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR Georgetown University, Learning From Its Sins By DAVID J. COLLINS AUG. 31, 2016 The Jesuit cemetery in St. Inigoes, Md., used to be surrounded by tobacco fields. Over the course of roughly 150 years, those fields were worked by hundreds of slaves owned by the Jesuits. In June, I sat in that cemetery, as a priest and a history professor at Georgetown University, with 16 Jesuit seminarians. We discussed what had happened there in 1838, when several hundred men, women and children were rounded up by the churchmen and their hired agents and transported first by wagon, then by ship to plantations in Louisiana. I tell this history to seminarians every year. Both as historian and as priest, I am convinced that the past matters in the present. That is one reason I did not hesitate to lead the working group on slavery, memory and reconciliation that has as its goals the recovery of a neglected history and the pursuit of present-day reconciliation at Georgetown. The group’s recommendations for how best to acknowledge and recognize the school’s historical relationship with slavery will be released on Thursday. The 1838 sale is the most harrowing story I tell the seminarians. But it is hardly the only such story. The visit to the plantations is a chance to teach them that the Jesuits in colonial North America and the early United States owned more than 9/1/2016 7:38 AM Georgetown University, Learning From Its Sins - The New York Times 2 of 3 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/01/opinion/georgetown-university-lear... 1,000 slaves on Maryland plantations, as well as in the Midwest and Deep South. Few of the slaves were emancipated until the law required it. This slave labor generated revenue for Catholic pastoral and educational foundations. Revenue from the sale of these men, women and children regularly supported a growing network of missions, parishes and schools. In 1838 such revenue saved Georgetown from serious debt and settled a dispute with the archbishop of Baltimore, who had wanted the plantations for himself. But even in the 1780s as church officials were planning to open Georgetown, revenues from the sale of “supernumerary” slaves were already targeted for the school’s operations. In telling this history of slavery to the seminarians, I am also handing on what I learned myself as a first-year Jesuit nearly 30 years ago. The history of the Jesuits in colonial Maryland beginning in 1634 has so many proud chapters — of adventurousness in the face of the unknown, of resoluteness in answer to state- sponsored religious bigotry, of creativity and generosity in response to pastoral need. But there is a darker side to that history: Racism, hypocrisy and brutality are part of it, too. Two centuries of Jesuit slaveholding and slave-trading demonstrate that. I will not let the young Jesuits take pride in and inspiration from a select set of uplifting episodes without challenging them to grapple with our history’s offenses as well. I learned that perspective on history — that the failures need to be claimed as much as the successes — not in the United States but in Germany, when I was a student there. I still remember how startled I was by the frankness of a fellow Jesuit explaining that as a German he had no right to take pride in Bach and Brahms without taking responsibility for Bergen-Belsen and Birkenau. That was not how I had learned my American history, in particular the history of slavery. Of course we had learned in school that slavery was deplorable. But as we processed its implications among ourselves, our responsibility was subtly attenuated with the suggestion that the Civil War, Reconstruction and civil rights legislation had paid the historical debt, as if hitting a reset button on race relations. And besides, as I remember, the reasoning of my circle of grade-school friends — mostly the grandchildren of Irish, Polish and Italian immigrants — was that our families had arrived too late to have a share in any culpability. 9/1/2016 7:38 AM Georgetown University, Learning From Its Sins - The New York Times 3 of 3 http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/01/opinion/georgetown-university-lear... American history is replete with such cruelty and degradation, so much so that the figures can feel too large to fathom — like the one million slaves forcibly relocated to the Deep South in the 19th century. And exactly herein lies the value of the Jesuit history: The story of the sale that saved Georgetown draws our attention to 272 specific people, and meticulous Jesuit record keeping unwittingly spares these victims the final indignity of forced anonymity. We know the people’s names; when they were born, married and buried; whom they were sold with and whom they were separated from. We can trace their family connections, sometimes even to the present. Those 272 biographies sting in a way a statistic of one million can’t. This is what makes the Jesuit case compelling, useful to study and promising for communities with a particular connection to it, like Georgetown University, the Jesuits and the descendants of the slaves. This story cries out its injustice against our American tendency to distance ourselves from the ugly realities in our history. Slavery is our history, and we are its heirs. America would not be America except for its deplorable history of slavery. There will be no “liberty and justice for all” until we understand that, not just Georgetown University and the Roman Catholic Church, but we as a nation. David J. Collins is an associate professor of history at Georgetown University and chairman of its working group on slavery, memory and reconciliation. Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook and Twitter (@NYTOpinion), and sign up for the Opinion Today newsletter. A version of this op-ed appears in print on September 1, 2016, on page A27 of the New York edition with the headline: Georgetown, Learning From Its Sins. © 2016 The New York Times Company 9/1/2016 7:38 AM
Purchase answer to see full attachment
Explanation & Answer:
1100 Words
User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.

Explanation & Answer

View attached explanation and answer. Let me know if you have any questions.

Surname 1
Student’s name:
Instructor’s name:
Course program:
Why the descendants of American slaves should not receive reparations.
Reparations are the compensation of time, money, or effort to undo previous transgressions.
Slavery is a social practice in which human beings were owned by others as property, especially
for use as forced laborers. Over 150 years ago, in America, slavery was a legal practice in which
human beings, mainly Africans and African Americans, were enslaved and exploited to work as
laborers in the tobacco and cotton fields (Collins 1). Around 272 men, women, and children
enslaved were sold together with the products of their labor to secure the future of the premier
Catholic institution currently known as Georgetown University and secure the nation's global
economic and political position (Collins 1). Additionally, they were hired to pay off debts,
increase their worth, and pass them on to the next generation. Despite this, those enslaved
humans faced brutal conditions. Later on, slavery was terminated. Ever since the abolishment of
American slaves, there have been argumentative discussions about whether the descendants of
the slaves ought to receive reparations or be denied. From my viewpoint, the descendants of
American slaves ought not to obtain reparations.
Reasons as to why descendants of the American slaves should not receive reparations

Surname 2
First, reparations cannot cure the past ill-treatment of slaves and would only separate the
country along racial lines. According to a publication by (Swarn 1), Georgetown University is
embarking on a plan to make amends for the ancient, which includes bestowing preferential
standing in the admission to the descendants of the confined. This will mean giving privileges to
the descendants of the enslaved who were black. This will make other eligible students from the
Asian and Caucasian races feel demeaned and create hostility bet...

Goes above and beyond expectations!


Similar Content

Related Tags