US House Holds Raucous Hearing Into Slavery Reparations

Jun 20, 2019

House Judiciary Committee heard testimony about government reparations for African Americans. For the first time in more than a decade the House held a hearing related to reparations legislation, which was first introduced 30 years ago.

Nearly 60 House Democrats have voiced their support of the reparations bill, and a number of Democratic presidential hopefuls have shown interest in either supporting or studying the bill. The legislation would open a commission to consider a national apology and reparations for slavery.

The hearing featured testimony from actor Danny Glover and writer Ta-Nehisi Coates who criticized Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for comments made Tuesday about his opposition to reparations.

Host Frank Stasio speaks with scholars Sandy Darity and Kirsten Mullen about their analysis of the hearing and their upcoming book on reparations: "From Here to Equality: Black Reparations in the 21st Century" Darity is a professor of public policy, African and African American Studies, and economics at Duke University. He also directs the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity. Co-author Kirsten Mullen is a folklorist and the founder of Artefactual, an arts consulting practice.