WATCH: Ta-Nehisi Coates’ full opening statement on reparations at House hearing www.youtube.com
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said he doesn't believe in reparations because "no one alive was responsible" for slavery. If you agree, keep reading.
It's a common argument whenever slavery or the history of racial injustice in America is brought up:
"Slavery ended 150 years ago. None of us alive today owned slaves or were slaves. Lots of people have been mistreated throughout history, but's that's the past. Time to move on."
Usually the folks saying it's time to move on are on the white side of American history—or at least not descendants of slaves in America. Folks on the white side of history tend to forget that black Americans' and white Americans' histories are not the same, our legacies are not the same, and the injustices our collective ancestors either inflicted or endured are not the same.
But we're all the same now, right? We all have the same legal rights on paper, so why keep looking to the past?