Posted on June 21, 2024

Moment California Democrat Weeps When Latina Republican Tells Him Why Slavery Reparations Are Doomed

James Reinl, Daily Mail, June 20, 2024

A top California Democrat was brought to tears when he was told in a heated debate that Asian and Latino residents shouldn’t have to pay for a controversial slavery reparations package.

Ash Kalra, the Indian-American chair of the Assembly Judiciary Committee, briefly sobbed in a tense exchange with Latina Republican Kate Sanchez as she slammed race-based payouts.

The pair were debating Senate Bill 1331, one of 14 reparations bills being weighed by lawmakers after a task force last year proposed $1.2 million packages for every descendant of slavery.

Sanchez, a GOP Latina and businesswoman from the Los Angeles suburbs, slammed payouts as ‘fundamentally unfair’ because of who would foot the $800 billion price tag.

Asians and Latinas make up 55 percent of the Golden State’s population and shouldn’t have to pay through a ‘major tax hike unlike anything this state has ever seen before.’

‘Most of them, like me, are first, second, or third generation immigrants who had nothing to do with slavery, discrimination, Jim Crow laws, nothing,’ she said.

‘It is fundamentally unfair to force these people to pay for this.’

She added that the ‘pain of our past should not be paid by people of today.’

Kalra, a progressive Indian American immigrant who represents eastern San Jose, countered, his voice faltering as he fought back the tears.

‘Compensation is necessary,’ he said.

‘It’s hard to ask those of us currently sitting in the Legislature to make those commitments, but no one asked black families over generations if it was okay to take their wealth, if it was okay to enslave them.’

America ‘became a superpower’ from slavery and ‘we still benefit to this day from what happened to our brothers and sisters in the black community,’ he added.

‘I know it’s not going to be easy,’ he told the June 11 session in Sacramento.

‘It’s not supposed to be easy to actually admit when you’ve caused pain.’

The heated exchange came as the California Legislative Black Caucus pushes hard to turn reparations into reality, including through a first-in-the-nation task force that wrapped up last year.

Their slate of 14 reparations bills tackle education, business, criminal justice, health care and civil rights.

While voters and politicians have backed plans to issue an official apology, which does not have a large price tag, cash payouts to the descendants of slaves have failed to gain traction.

A survey last year of 6,000 registered California voters found that only 23 percent supported cash reparations, while 59 percent were opposed.

It’s unclear how California can afford the $800 billion process, which is more than 2.5 times the annual budget of a state that is already grappling with a $68 billion deficit.

The reparations movement gathered momentum across the US amid the race protests over the police killing of George Floyd in 2020, but progress has stalled more recently.

Campaigners say it’s time for America to repay its black residents for the injustices of the historic Transatlantic slave trade, Jim Crow segregation and inequalities that persist to this day.

The sums are eye-watering — black lawmakers in Washington seek at least $14 trillion for a federal scheme to ‘eliminate the racial wealth gap’ between black and white Americans.

Critics say payouts to selected black people will inevitably stoke divisions between winners and losers, and raise questions about why American Indians and others don’t get their own handouts.

Reparations are popular among the black people who stand to benefit from them, but unpopular among the whites, Asians, and others who would foot the tax bill without themselves benefiting.

Fully 74 percent of blacks support the US government reparations for slavery and its legacy, compared with just 26 percent of whites, according to a Reuters/Ipsos survey from last year.

Reparations are much more popular among Democrat voters than with Republicans.

From the 15th to the 19th century, at least 12.5 million Africans were kidnapped, forcibly transported by European ships and merchants and sold into slavery.

Those who survived the brutal voyage ended up toiling on plantations in the Americas, including in Brazil, the Caribbean, and the United States, while others profited from their labor.