The unintended consequences of promising black Americans reparations

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In this article, I offer the opposing view (con-side) against reparations for American slavery, as if in a forensic debate before a moot court: I presume the American public will judge the merits of my opposing arguments. I oppose reparations for slavery based on: 1) the legal standard of culpability, 2) the “clean-hands doctrine, " 3) Black people who were themselves slave owners, and 4) fairness in the administration justice. While anyone else is welcome to argue the pro-side, I argue the con-side of the following proposition: America owes Black Americans reparations because of its history of plantation slavery, which has privileged White Americans economically over Black Americans. I provide a plethora of evidence that reparations and justice are incompatible in the application of American justice. Moreover, any law requiring reparations for slavery could create an unintended liability for far too many Black Americans whose ancestry extends far beyond Sub-Saharan Africa.

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