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Thread: Jamaica: Pay Us For Slavery

  1. #1
    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Jamaica: Pay Us For Slavery

    'Pay us for slave labour'
    Gov't, Opposition agree on need for reparations / $52 billion would suffice, says Holness
    by Balford Henry Sunday Observer writer balfordh@jamaicaobserver.com
    Sunday, February 18, 2007



    Jamaica, which gained international acclaim for its part in the fight against South African Apartheid, is getting ready to throw itself behind the controversial Reparations Movement seeking compensation for chattel slavery.


    ASSAMBA. we believe the movement cannot be strictly Jamaican, bearing in mind our common concerns and history
    Both the Government and Opposition appeared last week to agree on the need for reparations from Britain out of its profits from the Transatlantic Slave Trade, which uprooted millions of Africans to give forced labour in the so-called New World, including Jamaica.

    While the Government has not yet named a figure that would be sufficient compensation to Jamaicans, the Opposition suggested that the $52-billion price tagged to the Education Transformation project would suffice.

    "The task force report says we need $52 billion to finance the transformation. We, as Jamaicans, should say to the British Government, and the case is quite clearly laid out, that our Parliament should make a direct claim on the British Government for them to fund our education system," said Andrew Holness, the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) spokesman on education.

    "I am not saying that they should fund it in perpetuity. (I'm suggesting) That they make a one-off payment to invest in the human resources of this country through our education system," Holness told the House of Representatives.
    But the Government signalled its intention to seek a collective position with other Caribbean Community (Caricom) nations who share a common history of slavery.


    HENRY. has dogged the Lower House for years to take up the call for financial compensation for the act of slavery
    "We believe the movement cannot be strictly Jamaican, bearing in mind our common concerns and history," said minister of tourism, entertainment and culture, Aloun Assamba. "We must approach the Crown with a carefully considered Caricom position."
    Both Assamba and Holness were contributing to the House debate on reparations which was triggered by a resolution from Opposition MP Mike Henry, who has dogged the Lower House for years to take up the call for financial compensation for the act of slavery.

    Speaking for the ruling People's National Party (PNP) administration, Assamba indicated the Government was proceeding through the Jamaica National Bicentenary Committee (JNBC), which it had created, with a sub-committee on reparations.

    The JNBC, which is spearheading local activities marking the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade, has acquired copies of the successful British documentary, The Empire Pays Back, which will be used to support group discussions islandwide on the issue.
    "In the medium term, the goal is to mobilise all those who have been working in the field for a long time, and to sensitise those who have dismissed the work of the (reparations) movement for lack of knowledge," Assamba said.


    HOLNESS. our Parliament should make a direct claim on the British Government for them to fund our education system
    She added that the response so far "has convinced us that the only way to achieve a just outcome is through discussions and consultations yielding a well-researched and reasoned position on which we have broad national consensus".

    According to Assamba, The Empire Pays Back was developed by "a group of bankers and actuaries" in the United Kingdom. But the documentary was actually produced by a Jamaican-born academic, Dr Robert Beckford, a lecturer in African Diasporan Religions and Cultures at the University of Birmingham, England in 2005.

    He has also taught at Houghton College, New York, and has written several books, including Blood and Fire - the story of Jamaican Independence, and The Political Story of Jamaican Sound Systems in Britain. His documentary looks at how Britain profited from the Transatlantic Slave Trade and consults a team of experts to put a monetary figure on the amount owing to the descendants of slaves.

    To arrive at a figure, Beckford assembled a team comprising an actuary, compensation lawyer and an economic historian specialising in the slave trade. They draw on other modern compensation cases and take into account unpaid wages, pain and suffering of the slaves, the enrichment of British industry and the loss of earnings to future generations due to the legacy of slavery.

    Beckford also suggested reparations should be used to fund educational and local infrastructure in Africa, the Caribbean and the Afro-Caribbean community in the United Kingdom, rather than on an individual basis.
    Taking his cue from Beckford, Holness said that as the British were mobilising substantially for the commemoration of the ending of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, it was a golden opportunity for Jamaica to make its demand for reparation from Britain.

    "Now that we have the attention of the world, at least for a month, while we commemorate the 200th year since the abolition of the slave trade, we should take the opportunity to call upon the British empire to fund a one-off major transformation of the Jamaica education system," Holness suggested.

    Assamba said that the showing of Beckford's film across the island would be complemented by a schedule of public lectures to keep the dialogue "open and visible".
    Some reparationists point to the compensation of Jews as historical precedent for monetary compensation of Blacks who were forced into slavery and have largely remained behind other races economically as a result.

    Dalton Conley, associate professor of sociology and director of the Centre for Advanced Social Science Research at New York University, pointed to the fact that in 1865, "Union soldiers, marching across the South, seized up to 900,000 acres of 'abandoned property'. Some radical Northerners hoped to use this land to provide freed slaves with the now-legendary "40 acres and a mule" as restitution for slavery.

    Their hopes were obviously dashed. But the argument for reparations lives on nearly 140 years later".
    Conley, author of the book Being Black, Living in the Red: Race, Wealth and Social Policy in America, said "while few doubt that slavery was a great wrong, the challenge before us is how to make things right through financial restitution. But just how would we devise a practical formula to determine who gets what?"

    He said most assessments started with the notion of payment for lost wages. "One researcher took 1860's prices for slaves as an estimate of their labour value and applied compound interest. The result: $2 trillion to $4 trillion."

    The author quoted economist Edward Wolff, who noted that a typical white American family enjoyed a net worth that was more than eight times that of its black counterpart.

    "Even at equivalent income levels, gaps remain large. Among families earning less than $15,000 a year, the median African-American family has a net worth of zero, while the corresponding white family has $10,000 in equity. The typical white family earning $40,000 annually has a nest egg of around $80,000. Its black counterpart has about half that amount," Conley argued.

    "This inequity is partly the result of the head start whites enjoy in accumulating and passing on assets. Some economists estimate that up to 80 per cent of lifetime wealth accumulation results from gifts from earlier generations, ranging from the downpayment on a home to a bequest by a parent.

    "If the government used such net-worth inequality as a basis, and then factored in measures like population size, it could address reparations by transferring about 13 per cent of white household wealth to blacks. A two-adult black family would receive an average reparation of about US$35,000," Conley calculated.
    The debate, which started February 6, will continue on Tuesday in the House. With additional reporting by Desmond Allen

    SOURCE

  2. #2
    JA Soca Ambassador socapineman is offline
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    " We Set The Trends World Wide ! "


    What, you feel we ask asking for too little ?


    With the amount of money the UK profit from the sugar cane fields...can't even begin to count, muchless the Royal family money can't done !


    Well, if you don't know, we are fully position in Brixton to take over England at will !



    But, on a serious note :

    "This inequity is partly the result of the head start whites enjoy in accumulating and passing on assets. Some economists estimate that up to 80 per cent of lifetime wealth accumulation results from gifts from earlier generations, ranging from the downpayment on a home to a bequest by a parent.


    Very true....accumulating wealth and passing it on, too many lack the big picture !

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    Registered User marabunta is offline
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    White Ruling Class MUST PAY Reparations THIS CENTURY!!!!!
    http://apspuhuru.org/tribunal/payback.shtml

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    Salsero de pura cepa Otorongo's Avatar Otorongo is offline
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    Simple question. Do you honestly believe the UK will fork out that money ever? I hope that they do agree to help finance education though.

  5. #5
    The Divine GIOVANNA Dominican_Gurl's Avatar Dominican_Gurl is offline
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    The UK has recently announced for the first time that they will be teaching slavery as part of the curriculum in UK secoundary schools.

    I will be getting envolved in trying to get the UK Government to fork out some money and investment for the Caribbean as owed.

    There is schemes presently in the UK to help people from the Carribean communitry to get into further/higher education and into full time employement.
    Last edited by Dominican_Gurl; 02-18-2007 at 10:58 AM. Reason: spellin

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