Ten-point reparations plan is seriously flawed

| 06/08/2014

I don’t think that I have seen a comprehensive challenge to the ten-point reparations plan that our Caribbean governments are using as the blue print to press Europe for reparations.  However, I think this plan can (and will) be successfully challenged. To start, we want Europe to apologize. The Europeans can successfully refuse this demand on several good grounds. 

Firstly, both the supposed perpetrators and the supposed victims are long dead. Secondly, those alive in Europe didn’t commit the “crime”. Thirdly, and this is the most powerful reason, slavery was both morally and legally acceptable at the time – both to the Europeans and the Africans. Far from apologizing, I think the Europeans should be proud of their great imperial past.

We also want repatriation. This most impractical aspect of this plan is quite laughable. What guarantees do we have that those in Africa will be glad to see us returning? If those thought that life was hard in the West, they should wait until they reach Africa! Also, it is interesting to note that many of those calling for this pipe dream actually have the means to go back, but refuse to do so.

We also want an “Indigenous People’s Development Programme”. As the ten-point plan itself says, the scholarship programme that the University offers to members of the indigenous community is woefullyinadequate. This is an admission that our own governments care very little about these peoples. The Europeans have been doing much more. For example, directly, they funded the upgrade of the water supply system in Dominica’s indigenous Carib territory. Indirectly, they have pumped tens of millions of Euros into Dominica – for both the native and non-native populations.

We also want “Cultural Institutions”. The first point I would like to make is that if we cannot come up with the intellectual means to create our own cultural institutions, then no amount of reparations can help us. However, the Europeans have been helping us in this regard. The Institute of Jamaica was started in 1879 by the then British governor. That organization is mainly responsible for the preservation of Jamaica’s culture. It has oversight responsibility for the African Caribbean Institute of Jamaica, the National Gallery and other cultural organizations. What more do we want from the Europeans?

Then the European must help us solve our “public health crisis”. Again, this can be successfully challenged from many angles. Among others, firstly, no one two hundred years ago would have been able to foreseen the effect of the slave diet today, if there is any.  Secondly, we today still continue to feed ourselves with this “poison” diet.  Thirdly, the evidence for this claim is very unsound. Fourthly, our “modern” diet of fast food has done much to contribute to the health problems we have today and fifthly, this fast food diet would have done much to “dilute” the link to two hundred years ago.

As for our Illiteracy problem, the advances that we have had since independence have been due in large part to the assistance given to us by Europe. The ministry of education itself was created during British rule, in 1953. The University of the West Indies was started by the British in 1948 as a college of the University of London and given to us as a gift. Many of Jamaica’s popular schools were built during British rule. It may be true that at the time of independence we had a high illiteracy rate, however, it is through the same education system that the British bequeathed to us that we have been able to reduce this problem.

We also want an “African Knowledge Programme”. We want the Europeans to help us Africans in the West to know our history in Africa. In fact, it is largely because of the Europeans why we know what we do about Africa’s past. Napoleon’s discovery of the famous Rosetta stone and its translation in Europe enabled us to better understand the greatness of ancient Egypt. Many European universities and other organizations have done much to open up Africa’s hidden past. Of course, I wouldn’t want to discount what African universities are doing. But to claim that Europe isn’t helping us to know our past is very disingenuous. Also, with modern means of communication, we don’t need to be physically present in Africa to know its history.

This “Psychological Rehabilitation” demand is a strange one. I have a feeling that the “reparatory justice approach to truth and educational exposure” that is being demanded may cause more harm than good, especially if the truth about our own involvement in the export of slaves and the millions that died in Africa at our own hands are told to us.

I am still not sure how much more technology transfers we can get.  From modern communication systems, to the internet, to modern transportation systems and the like, all of these have been transferred to us. Technology transfers also involve know-how, though education. As mentioned before, we have the University of the West Indies and the University of Technology, both started by the British. If we can’t use institutions like those to create a culture of science and technology, after over half a century of independence, then I can’t see how the Europeans will be able to do it for us.

Finally, we want debt cancellation. For some strange reason, our high debts are high because we were slaves! Why should the Europeans reward us after we voluntarily entered into these loan agreements with these creditors and then refuse to be prudent with these loans?  However, we have received some debt write-offs. Guyana received some from Bulgaria in 2012. Haiti got some from the Paris Club in 2009. Jamaica has received four billion dollars worth of debt forgiveness from Britain between 1997 and 2004. It is utter nonsense if we think that all of our debts will be forgotten!

When one looks at this ten-point plan, the only impression that anybody can get of us is that we are a people determined to get more handouts. This ten-point plan is not an accomplishment – it’s an embarrassment.  We need to ditch it and grow up.

Michael A. Dingwall writes from Kingston, Jamaica.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Cheeky beggars!  Ancient history is no excuse to blame other people for the weak morals and will power of modern citizens.  This begging is pathetic. 

    • Dr. C says:

      To 9:37: your ignorance is something to marvel at; chattel slavery did not, my friend, occur in ancient times…ever heard of mercantilism? As in, the first modern prototype of capitalism-cum-

      globalization? Chattel slavery is a product of early modernity, a product of European 'progress'.

      And what of this talk of weak morals? Do you know that in the US, for instance, white folks are likelier to consume drugs than black folks (check out Tim Wise's impeccable new book)? They are also likelier to go on shooting rampages—does this make white ethnicities morally weak in general? And what about those new generation racist teddy boys in 'oleBlighty',mate (hope you know what all of this means, you should), who, without provocation, verbally abuse people of colour on a daily basis? They do that because people of colour have no willpower, huh? But, wait, I, A BLACK MAN, graduated at the top of my class at Manchester University because I have no willpower, right? I don't expect you to get my gist, but, bottom line, sir? Stop veiling your racism under inept generalizations, this points to a very dark intention on your part.

      You need to: a) stop generalizing…makes you look like a hateful racist (but I guess that's ok with you), and, b) pick up a book and…READ, ma'man! Dios mio, mate!

      • Anonymous says:

        Truly atrocious logic and argumentation exhibited above, but that is perhaps what is acceptable in the lower reaches of the redbricks.  First the speech in Parliament in which claim for "reparations" was made, had you bothered to do your research, referred to drug usage in Jamaica and obseity issues in Barbados, hence the reference to will power.  So, your smart-assed quotation of Mr Wise's book is counter to your own position, since it indicates that issues such as regional drug use have nothing to do with slavery, contrary to what CARICOM would have us believe.  As for the extrapolation about the will power of a region from your personal acheivements, that is ridiculous.  The poster was not in fact making any comparative judgments on those living in the Caribbean.  Rather (s)he was simply expressing the widely held view that drug use and obesity are personal choices of the individuals.  It was you, sir, that jumped onto the race card and played that card with relish, vigour and blatant festering resentment.  Now re-read your last sentence.  It is you that comes across as the one with the chip on the shoulder and problems with race.  And to be frank, given your terrible writing style, reading a few good books would benefit you.  You should hook up with Whodatis and form a chat site online.  You were made for each other. 

        • Dr. C says:

          To 15:10.

          Your reply is a text-book case of ignorance posing as enlightened apologetics. In my initial reply to 9:37, I merely took into consideration what she said, that is, to paraphrase "her", 'those cheeky "modern" beggars should not blame ancient history for any lack of willpower and morals on their part'. I see nothing here about obesity and drug use; perhaps these are implied, but any such implication is voided given 9:37's intention to provide a hazy, unclear 'confident' non-causality between ancient history and 'these cheeky modern beggar citizens' (remember 'referred to', to use your words, is not the same as 'constitutes'). Had she presented her ideas more clearly and less ambiguously, I wouldn't have had any need to correct her ostensibly coded portrayal of entire national-cum-racial groups on the grounds of her 'ancient history' misnomer. Also, and this is where your silly apologetic intention is brought to bear, if she wasn't replying to people in the Caribbean but people in general, why post anything on this page, whose main article focuses on Caribbean people?  That is where amiguity gets you, NOWHERE, and your desire to defend 'her' necessarily renders your apologetics dumb, bias, and suspect, to be crass about it. Therefore, when she refers to cheeky beggars, I can't help but to think, based both on the page we are on and her bold, 'cheeky' mention of INACCURATE FACTS, that she is in the process of arbitrarily stereotyping entire national groups that tend to have one racial thing in common, that is, blackness–and abritrariness is polarizing, lest you didn't know; such techniques form the basis of colour-blind racism, that is, the witting or unwitting intention to lock in racial, national and/or ethnic stereotypes without necessarily mentioning race or ethnicity. So, yeah, she may have told you of her intentions after the fact of my reply to her post, but her post still remains hyper ambiguous with a conveyed hatefulness that can be construed as providing an ideological foundation for colour-blind racism-despite any damage control on your or 'her' part.

          Secondly, I have written numerous articles in top-tiered scholarly journals and won an international award for my article entitled 'Did Slaver Really Matter in Cayman?' I have read over more than 2000 'good' books, and will be publishing my own with Rowman and Littlefield next year. You not agreeing with my logic or undsterstanding my stylisitics are not 'terribly' creative excuses for branding my writing as 'terrible'. Give me one example of a grammatical or morphological faux pas in my writing…go ahead, I dare you! 

           

    • Anonymous says:

      Except it isn't ancient history, and the impact of slavery is still here, and they aren't begging they are demanding what was stolen from them.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Those Saxons made me and my Anglo Saxon kind so I think we should pass it on to them Saxons to sort out.

  3. Anonymous says:

    If you're going to send a bill to Europe or wherever, are you going to credit them for all the foreign aid shovelled out to Africa and the Caribbean since the '50's? The reparations may have already been paid.

    • Anonymous says:

      A mere pittance compared to the costs inflicted by slavery. That is mere tokenism.

      • Anonymous says:

        "Costs inflicted by slavery"?  Such as?  In the modern day?  BS. Total BS.

        • Anonymous says:

          You are a very ignorant person. European countries were built up on the backs of slavery. The psychological impact of slavery is still felt where black people have been taught to consider themselves inferior, ugly etc.  

      • anonymous says:

        I would love to see how this is calculated. I assume that this would be along the same lines as the government accounts here. It maybe time to put in an honest days work for a day's pay and stop this BS.

  4. Anonymous says:

    IS is making slaves of, torturing and killing various minorities throughout Iraq. They should definintely be made to pay. However if their polticians in Baghdad dont get off their a**es and stop squabbling about random rubbish whilst Iraq burns, then it is undoubtedley those same current leaders who should compensate the Iraqi people for their poor leadership. If they dont stop soon, there will be no Iraq left.

    Of course not relevant directly to the Caribbean, but a current situation hints at many sides and many views in any given issue. This one is fresh and perhaps more clearcut- no-one is going to prove anything from 200 years ago.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Michael, your view point is woefully lacking in facts and sense. In the first instance, this is about the wholesale enslavement and exploitation of a people. The individuals involved may have died, but those peoples remain. The countries, inheritances, many of the business organizations or the beneficiaries, descendants of victims, broken societies, all remain. 

    For your education, you might want to research what is currently happening in Britain by the British, who have documented the direct beneficiaries of the slave trade and published the results online at 'Legacies of British Slave Ownership' at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/. You will discover that slave beneficiaries are far from dead. One of the shocking revelations for me was the fact that whilstthe slaves and their societies were never compensated for the brutal wrongs perpetuated upon them, the slave owners themselves were compensated by the British govenrment when slavery was ended. And, the British are by far more enlightened than their other European counterparts, who fail to even recognise their crimes. The French, for example, was receiving payment from Haiti until 1947 for the loss of slaves, which was property they lost after the Haitian revolution hundreds of years previously in 1804! These payments amounted to some $21 billion, yes, BILLION, in todays value, before being reduced to $60 million francs. The first payment was 25,000,000 gold francs. All from a nation of slaves, with poorly educated populace and no industrial capacity. 

    It is not surprising that so many do not support the idea of reparations. The actual slavery occured many years ago; however, the impact of slavery is present in all facets of our lives today. Colonialism, post-Colonialism and the current economic order perpetuates poverty in many ex-slave nations, and are all intimately linked with slavery and post slavery socioeconomics. Within the societies of the ex-slave nations of today, can be found former slaves and current beneficiaries of slavery, both entities equally responsible for the perpetuation of poverty based on ignorance. Ignorance is the direct result of hundreds of years of slavery and exploitation. The injustice is the failure to mitigate the impacts of slavery after hundreds of years of its brutal reality, even whilst continuing to enjoy the economic fruits of this crime against humanity.

    Your viewpoint would be a great example of this dynamic.

    "Knowledge is the child of humility and an open mind." Educate yourself.

    Rick

    • Ex Expat says:

      But any compensation will come from the British Government, now let's think, where do they get their money from the British Tax payer. There are approximaely 5,000,000 british tax payers that are of South-east Asian descent, then there is around 500,000 from Carribean decent. So even though these people and their descendends never profited from the slave trade and were under the yoke of it, they shold be made to pay? 2 worngs to not make a right.

  6. Dr. C says:

    A very influential African-American scholar once likened chattel slavery to a slow roasting holocaust; yes, people of African descent were systematically snatched from the coasts and hinterlands of West Africa-often by other Africans, but that's beside the point…the 'white man' was ultimately responsible for orchestrating, driving, and sustaining slavery for centuries(yip, I said it, truth is truth, after all, and should not be sugar coated in this egregious, crucial, contentious 'instant').

    If anyone reading this brief treatise is unaware of the lingering repressed effects of a brand of racism that was shaped by a hypocritical yet world-changing imperialism (which has been reincarnated and modernized, to boot, and unbeknownst to many British Overseas Territory Citizens, many of whom seem elated in their political position of  the helpless 'colonial' in need of the master's guidance) , consider the following:

    Consider the black parent who wants her black daughter to 'marry up' by not marrying a black man; ora black person who seeks a spouse or significant other on the sole criterion that his/her future child will have 'good hair' or lighter skin; seemingly inconsequential examples, but they point to the inescapable truth that since the complete emancipation of slaves in 1838, at which time blacks were made legislatively equal with whites and Europeans, these very racial and national categories fought to subtly and not-so-subtly ensure a continuing same racial dynamic based on the continued subjugation, diminution, discrimination, and demonization of blacks and blackness (this is why, for instance, why hardly any blacks could vote throughout the Caribbean after 1840… they simply couldn't afford the ridiculously prohibitive voting fees that only the white and near-white influential few could dish out). In other words, many black folks at present are guilty of loathing themselves and their colour because their ancestors were conditioned to do so and simply passed this on to their progeny as a matter of legacy.

    As you would have also guessed by now, the famous UNESCO document that denounced racism in 1950, while a step in the right direction, had no teeth, when you consider that Caribbean immigrants in Europe at the time had to suffer through the most virulent instances of racist abuse and had hardly any legal recourse; why? Because 'racism is behind us, so we shouldn't talk about it'…I could also talk about how the death of racial segregation in the US -known as Jim Crow- in the mid-to-late 60s did not diminish racism, but reinvented new subtler, economically-crippling, politically-devastating ways of being racist by claiming not to see colour while holding hard and fast to old racial stereotypes, but to do so would undermine any note of irony on which I would like to conclude. Long and short? WE HAVEN'T GOT OVER THE DEBILITATIONS OF RACISM BECAUSE, UNLIKE THE JEWISH HOLOCAUST, THESE DEBILITATIONS WERE NEVER ADDRESSED IN AN OFFICIAL, WELL-INTENTIONED FORUM AMONG THE PARTIES INVOLVED(think here about Tony Blair who in 2006 stopped short of apologizing for slavery on behalf of Britain because it ' was legal back then'). This is why certain people unaware of the importance of history in the present will continue to downplay racism-known today as COLOUR BLIND RACISM-and continue to heap complete blame on black folks for not getting over the past…the past ain't dead! It is anything but…

  7. Anonymous says:

    What a load of tosh.  Tell these beggars to sod off and end any aid that is sent their way.  Reparations?  What for? 

  8. Anonymous says:

    The comments here certainly show that racism is alive and glaring!

    • Umm says:

      From which angle are you talking about?  The white point of view, the black point of view, or native american indian point of view?

  9. Anonymous says:

    My white forfathers were fed to the lions by there masters in egypt perhaps i should be paid befor the others 1000 years later.

    That said modern slavery is alive and well in cayman the workpermit and marrage scheme

    keep people stuck in a bad situation

    • Anonymous says:

      I think you are mixing up some different stories there fella! Anyway none of that remotely compares to African enslavement. You trivialisethat holocaust with ridiculous talk about work permits. 

      • Anonymous says:

        How come we never hear of the other 55 million that died in WWII, we only hear the Jewish side of the story constantly name dropped through television and the movies, I guess its impossible for a bolshevick or russian affiliate to be jewish, because that would make the story strangely more real rather than a simplified good vs bad fairytale.

        • Ex Expat says:

          Actually you do, you here of the adult euthanisa of the mentally ill, the physically disabled, the Gypsies, the homosexuals, the Soviet prisoners of war. But the murder and destruction of the Russian Jews and Eurpoean Jews is spoken about becuase of the percentages of the populations involved, where is some cases only 0.01% of the population survived (ie the Jews fromBudapest)

      • Anonymous says:

        Your right i mixed a few things up and i should be paid extra

        I forgot that i am a russian jew

        and i also forgot that thomas jefferson (the president) had a child  with my great  great grandmother

        but we dont talk about that in my house

        and  That lennin guy from b4 russia was my uncle somehow

        The jew side of my family from russia had to run to germany and that wasn't very pretty

        Thus i should be paid b4 any slave from 140 or so years ago

        they have no idea of suffering

        at least in my house the memories are still fresh 

        • Anonymous says:

          Forgot?  don't think that was ever established. You can be anyone you like in an anonymous post on CNS, I guess. I am the Sultan of Brunei.

          Anyway Jews did receive reparations from West Germany. I don't know why you imagine you should have priority. 

  10. Manufactored concept says:

    I am not denying you have white people who are racists, but today black people seem to be the most racist people going, still stuck in the past…

    They always try to make everything an issue of blacks being oppressed by whites and refuse to accept responsibility for the disproportionately high rates of violent crime within their own communities.

    I know alot of decent black people and let me tell you, they live for today and do the best they can do for themselves and families. They don't have a chip on their shoulders because it would keep them from progressing.

     

    • Anonymous says:

      I am guessing you are a white person.

      • AA says:

        You mean "white rich person", because alot of whites on the lower scale are treated just as bad as blacks. You look in the United States and you have poor whites and black on the streets with the same problems, and you have upper whites and blacks looking down on them enjoying the spectacle. What use to been a thing between blacks and whites, is now between the well-off and those who are not despite race or color.

    • Anonymous says:

      Only an ignorant, callous white person would write such nonsense.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Sorry if this offends anyone but let me lay my cards on the table here.

    It is pretty much only loosers who would support the idiotic idea that people of today should apologise for the things their long-dead forebears did. It is stupid to think that people of  today and of Afro ancestry are owed compensation for things people back then did to our forebears. 

    Having a goodly percentage of Afro blood coursing through my veins, in all likelihood from maternal ancestors who were slaves, I am thankful to God that someone in my lineage was kidnapped from their tribe, transported in the hold of a slave ship and taken to the Caribbean. If not I either would not have been born, or worse: I might be living a hellish, poverty-ridden, lean, disease-stricken, low-life-expectancy existence, in a tribal villiage in the jungle, or in shanty-town in Africa. Famine. Dodging Ebola. No A/C?  No thanks!!  I would not trade living in Caribbean for the entire continent of Africa and a mansion in its finest city if it meant me having to live and raise my family there.

    Yeah, it was bad for those forebears who were kidnapped, made slaves, mistreated, overworked. etc,  but they are dead now. Dead!  Long gone. History.  It was not me or anybody I love or even know who was taken and abused. Nothing done now will undo their suffering. Sure, I could always use a few extra bucks, but no amount of guilt-inspired blood money in my pockets will pay them back for what was done to them. I do acknowledge that their sacrifice enabled me to live a well-educated, successful, blessed life in Shangri-La. If anything, the slaves who endured hell but gave us the ability to be born in a better land and to a better life than they could have ever dreamed of should be greatly revered and their memory sincerely respected,  but the Ten Point Plan is rubbish! 

    On second thought, I do not aplogise if this offends anyone! I am greatly offended by the foolishness of paying reparations for things done by long-dead people to long-dead people. What is past is past!  My slave ancestors bones have crumbled long ago. They are  dust. No one owes me anything for their plight.  If anybody owes anybody anything, I feel I owe those European slave traders and masters heartfelt thanks for extracting my bloodline from Africa and putting it in Paradise!

    • The Good Master says:

      You're welcome. I like your attitude. Now, get dinner on the table! Wash the car! Clean the pool! Do the laundry! Shop for the groceries! Dress the kids! Mop the floor! And be thankful.

      • Anonymous says:

        I do all those things now. Thankfully, if I tire of washing my car or cleaning my pool or mopping my floors, I can hire people like you to do it for me. 

        Many thanks,

        14:18

  12. Dreadlock Holmes says:

    First arriving in the Caribbean I sought to learn some history of my new home. I picked up a copy Jame's Michener's Caribbean. Although a novel it is well researched, and based on the historical evidence. Your argument Mr. Dingwall is a common one. That without the oh so benevolent interference of the colonizing authority the indigenous people would still be suffering in abject poverty. European countries came to the Caribbean for one purpose only. To extract the resources of the region. And make mountains of money doing so. Which they accomplished. Sometimes ruthlessly and many of the fortunes accumulated referred to as "old money" helped Europe achieve it's economic dominance. To add insult to injury this was achieved in large part from the free labor provided by the slave trade. Who couldn't make a tidy profit? The land was taken, and the labor was free. The Caribbean nations owe absolutely nothing to Europe, while Europe will still contend it owes nothing to them. But the evidence is there. In the castles, manor houses and industries built on explotation of land, resources, and above all… people. Asking for reparations now may turn out to be symbolic. But at least it is an admission. Man up.

    L

    • beholder says:

      The lesson of the history of man is ongoing and contains within it a recurrent themes. In this brutal material universe the stronger exploit the weaker for their own advantage. They prosper, expand get overconfident, unproductive and lazy, become weakened are are overpowered by another stronger, hungrier lot . The Kalingo came up from the Orinoco looking for a more prosperious environment and found it but they also found the Arawak people already there.  They displaced the weaker more pacific Arawak and took over the territory. The Kalinago prospered, enjoyed the abundance of the fertile islands and the rich fishing grounds. The fought off many invasions, until a stronger, more technologically advanced and determined civilization came and occupied their domaine. Stronger African tribes plundered weaker tribes and sold off their captives to the slave traders. Some kept slaves themselves.  People were displaced to other locations far from their native land. They adapted, servived, grew stronger, over generations. This inexporable tide of human displacement  creates new resourceful human stock. It is good to know your ancestral heritage. It in imperitive to know how exploitive humansystems bend the arc of history. But it is impossible to make exquitable reparations. It is right to fight injustices that exist NOW. To fight injustices from the past is a folly not worth pursuing.

      • Dreadlock Holmes says:

        I'd have to agree with that well said. But my point was an admission of culpability rather than sanitizing history which we too often do. Caribbean nations have also put a monetary value to what they state was their exploitation. This seems to have created the most reaction. But perhaps that was the point?

    • Anonymous says:

      My family's country estate was built on 18th century trans-Atlantic import/export business.  So in many ways you are right about the symbols.  It is such lovely place.  But the family does give back, after all the capital is all handled through lovely Caribbean trusts.  Which is nice.

      • Anonymous says:

        Even if that tale were true the only people you are helping are your compatriots who come out here to set up and administer the trusts.

    • Anonymous says:

      An admission of what? By whom? Why should anyone "man up"  for what was done by long since dead people to long since dead people? And what makes we who have Afro blood any more a victim than the native people of the many islands that were stolen from them? To fully "man up" would mean admitting the encroachment and giving them their land back. An idea no more foolish and lot less disingenuous than the Ten Point Plan.

  13. Racism says:

    The newest talk is about the over 700 Africans plus a few black doctors that have died from the deadly virus Ebola – how it is so strange that as soon as 2 white Americans contracted the  deadly desease, all of a sudden you a serum, a treatment for them that has positive chance of saving their lives. After so many months and deaths, the U.S. company that had the experimental drug, CNN calls it a "secret" … I guess it wasn't for all those common black folk who died in Africa.

    • TJ says:

      Its to reduce the African population. Sad but true. That is why America, Europe, and UK have so much wealth. Colonialism, slavery, and everything else they can to have a control over these coutries resources with the help of the IMF and World Bank.

      • Anonymous says:

        The IMF and World Bank are all worried about BRICS. They have their day coming.

    • Westminister says:

      I thought too about how coincidentally it was found when it was there in the U.S. from January of this year and now two of their own. I think the story behind that is Africa has always had corrupt governments that have sold out their countries to greedy corporations and high-standard-of-living capitalists. This has been going on forever and reasons why much of Africa has always been in poverty despite the huge wealth of their continent. Until Africans learn to unite and stand against greedy foreignors and exploiters this will ever continue. It won't get better.  

      • Anonyanmous says:

        Nelson Mandela did and it cost him the better part of his life in prison.  He fought for the liberation of this people, who by all accounts were in Africa years before the settlers who came conqured and enslaved a people native to their lands, how about that? I guess it was becuase the people of SA was greedy.   Or was it the reverse, just wondering out loud.

         

        • Anonymous says:

          As someone blessed with the sun, I have studied a bit of history myself and it reminds me of how Africans sold over Africans to white slave merchants for personal gains or profit. This is a known fact in history. Blacks did sold their own kind over to the white man. It is not like the white man came and hunted them down like they did to the American indians.

          So in my opinion reparations should be sought also from those African countries that took part in the slave trade crime. Neverthless its too late for reparations when these people who were sold  are already dead, and a new generation has arose in our modern age which knows nothing about the slave experience. I think we shouldn't even be thinking about reliving a past we know nothing about – unless this whole reparation thing is about money, which it probably is

          • Anonymous says:

            Indeed – and maybe we should also consider the countries of North Africa that raided the coast of Spain, Italy, France, Britain and even on occasion as far away as the coast of the USA from the mid-1500s through to the early 1800s, taking an estimated 1.5 million "Christians" as slaves? I am sure that there are many other examples that could be used.

            Reparations seem rather pointless – better to concentrate on eliminating the still-massive slave trade that continues today – it often goes by another name, but it's still slavery.

            • ebanks says:

              didn't I hear that somewhere?  concentrate on today and not what happened yesterday.  it makes sense to me  :)>

        • Fred the Piemaker says:

           

          his people, who byall accounts were in Africa years before the settlers who came conqured and enslaved a people native to their lands, how about that?

          You may be interested to know that Nelson's people, the Xhosa, acquired their land by conquering the KhoiKhoi when the Nguni peoples migrated South.  I guess the KhoiKhoi, or what's left of them after the white settlers in turn conquered them in the 17th Century, have a fairly dim view of the Xhosa, too, albeit the KhoiKhoi themselves had taken lands from the even earlier San people.  The Zulu's, the most numerous tribe in modern South Africa, engaged in a wholesale orgy of killing and conquering of other tribes in the early 1800's, typically killing all the men of another tribe and enslaving the women, before finally being broken by the British.  Where exactly do you draw the line in going back in time to complain about wrongs inflicted by others, or is it more a black and white issue for you? 

          • caymanian t says:

            I don't think he was making it into a black and white issue. It is more about foreignors coming in and taking land and wealth from native people.

            • Fred the Piemaker says:

              Oh, I see, like Nelson Mandela's people did to the KhoiKhoi, or the Zulu did to their neighbours in the 19th century.  Just so long as its not a race issue. 

            • anonymous says:

              Really? Like the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe? The land was "returned" back to the "war heroes" who supposedly fought for it and now the country starves! Real good idea to return it to the native people.

    • Anonymous says:

      You don’t think America should try to help a couple of Americans who were over in Africa trying to help Africans? If an American drug company had been using experimental Ebola drugs over there, you would be raising hell about that. Twisted…

      • Anonymous says:

        Recently on the News, US President BarackObama said it is "premature" to send an experimental medicine for the treatment of Ebola to West Africa.

      • DO or DIE says:

        Its damned if you do and damned if you don't:  These people are doomed if they do nothing. Don't you think there is equal or greater chance people will says; "WE HATE EVIL AMERICA TRYING TO KILL US!" if they withhold these drugs?  60-90% chance they will live. Americans have the choice to receive an experimental drug anytime they want. If I had the desease and knew my chances of surviving was slim, I would want to know I had that choice too, and believe you me I would take it.

         

  14. Caught up with the Past says:

    I am reminded of Buddha's words of wisdom:

    "'He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me,'–in those
    who harbour such thoughts hatred will never cease.

    'He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me,'–in those
    who do not harbour such thoughts hatred will cease.

    For hatred does not cease by hatred at any time: hatred ceases by
    love, this is an old rule.

    The world does not know that we must all come to an end here;–but
    those who know it, their quarrels cease at once."

    Dhamapada (500 B.C.)

    • Anonymous says:

      The funny thing is you never read these quotes when the issue is anti-semitism and the Holocaust. I wonder why.  

  15. Caymanian / says:

    Michael, when you write an article and say "WE" I have to wonder just who you are talking about. I am black and I haven't been following this issue and I know my entire Caymanian have not been following this issue because "WE" don't see it has anything to do with us – HENCE, WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, YOUR ARTICLE MUST BE SUPPORT FROM SOME MINORITY NOT FROM HERE.

  16. Anonymous says:

    The UK and EU should cease all financial assistance to CARICOM based projects until and unless these stupid demands for reparations are withdrawm.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Sorry.

    Get over it and build a Casino,  like the North American Indians.

  18. Anonymous says:

    A comprehensive challenge to the 10 point plan could be "It is bollocks, now sod off".  That is comprehensive enough for me.

    • Anonymous says:

      Which doesn't say much for you.

      • Anonymous says:

        I liked the raw directness of language myself.

        • Anonymous says:

           04:44.Unfortunately for you and the poster at Wed, 06/08/2014 – 02:34, the use of "foreign terms" means that your point is lost on the very people you are aiming at. Its all Greek to me .

          • Anonymous says:

            Unfortunately for you "foreign terms" should not have been included in inverted commas and the "its" in "its all Greek" requires an apostrophe since it is a contraction. 

        • Anonymous says:

          It's less about "raw directness of language" and more about your evident inability to formulate an intelligent response.

    • Anonymous says:

      02:34 What rubbish you wrote ;yet you chastise Caymanians over their use of the English language.

      • Anonymous says:

        Cicero himself would be proud of hard-hitting, reasoned rhetoric like this.