Reparations Watch

The Community Reparations Commission, led by Dr. Dwight Mullen, now want direct cash payments to black persons in Asheville and Buncombe County.

The Community Reparations Commission (CRC), was founded in 2021 by the City of Asheville and Buncombe County, to provide economic reparations to black persons for the historic discrimination and slavery committed by white persons in decades/ centuries past. The city and county have previously funded the CRC with millions in tax payer dollars so that the CRC could study and make recommendations for these reparations.

In its first meeting in April, 2021, City attorney Brad Braham met with the CRC and explained certain restrictions upon the use of funding. One restriction in particular was the “public purpose” requirement of the NC Constitution, namely that tax payer funds must be used for a projects that benefit the public. Cash payments to individuals would not constitute a public purpose pursuant to Mr. Braham’s analysis.

Undeterred, Dr. Dwight Mullen, chairman of the CRC, opened the CRC’s June 2023 meeting with the declaration that cash payments should be made. Dr. Mullen reminded the CRC that they were charged with increasing generational wealth. “(T)he key element in reducing disparities is increasing the assets of African Americans and increasing the assets means direct cash payments… I’m putting it on the table for you…in order to be successful is to increase that assets of African Americans”.

Other CRC members agreed. Commissioner Dwayne McAfee argued “we have ben shackled throughout our history. Let’s not shackle ourselves right now. Let’s be bold, let’s think bold, let’s stop asking for stuff and start demanding!”

Cash payments to individuals on the basis of race and clearly Unconstitutional on many different levels. WNC Citizens for Equality will continue to monitor the CRC and report updates. As always, WNCCE will be ready to litigate any policy or program adopted by Asheville or Buncombe County which violate the civil rights of its citizens.

3 thoughts on “Reparations Watch

  1. Why are we doing reparations at all? Blacks have had the same opportunity today as the white person. We have blacks representing in Congress, we had a black President, black doctors, black professors etc. What will cash do for them? Not one black person today hasn’t had the opportunity to change the course of their lives. If they are given cash, then they should be willing to help Asheville by volunteering their time to make a difference for others. This is all about greed from something that has not happened to them. Giving them money does not build integrity, it makes them look like a homeless person who is begging.

    1. Because you referred to Black people as “Blacks” and made sure to add “person” to white in your very first statement–clearly indicated how you subconsciously feel about people who are not white.

      Because you may know the names of the Black people who have done these things you list who had to work twice as hard to get where they are, and it did not come without racism along the way. Many of the current Black people who hold these professions may not have even gotten where they are had it not been for laws in place that force some sort of equal opportunity (though there’s still much work to be done now).

      You can name THE Black president, but can you name the other 44 presidents without looking it up?

      Because Asheville gentrification is a real problem and is disproportionately harming communities of color.

      Because Black people are disproportionately affected by police violence.

      Because people like you keep asking questions like this.

      “Not one black person today hasn’t had the opportunity to change the course of their lives.” This is just. False. No way around it.

      Because race was created in the 1700s by global WHITE colonization with the pure intention to suppress any culture of people who were not white, but PARTICULARLY Black people.

      Because Florida and Texas and other states are trying to get school curriculum to say that Black slaves BENEFITED from being enslaved. Enslaved people did not even have proper HUMAN birth certificates; they literally had certificates for LIVESTOCK.

      I don’t know what the right approach is for reparations. Racism is so insidious that, no, it can’t be fixed by Buncombe County implementing reparations. But it’s a start and an acknowledgment of the work that is still left to do.

      Have some compassion. Stop immediately dismissing things before truly learning the facts. It’s easy to turn a blind eye, but the reality is not going to change just because you choose ignorance.

      1. An interesting take: that you know that Dr. Mullen and the other members of the CRC had a harder time in 2023 than anyone else (and any other race) just by looking at their skin color. Without knowing anything else, you know person A, who is black, had a harder time than person B, who is Hispanic, or person C, who is Native American. Except you don’t know that. All you know are stereotypes. And people, let alone the goverment, should not be judging citizens (providing benefits to some, harms to others) based on skin color and stereotypes. You also seem to believe that society has not changed at all in the past 60 years. You claim that “racisim is so insidious”. OK. Where is the racism? Show me where it is acceptable to exclude people based on race. Or provide job opportunities based on race. Or provide advantages in school admissions based on race, or any benefits to persons based on race. Show me. (Ironically, I could show you examples of racism, but you believe that discrimination based on race against lighter colored individuals is perfectly OK.) You ask for compassion. Where is the compassion for the little Hispanic girl who cannot get a government sponsored scholarship because she is excluded based on race? (yes, city of Asheville actually did this in 2020). Or the Native American teacher who cannot get governement sponsored to improve her education because of her race. (yep, City did that one, too). Or the white kid coming living in foster care can’t get into an internship program at MAHEC due to her race (yep, City schools are doing that one, too.). Thing is, you either want a society where everyone is treated equally regardless of race, or you don’t. Used to be that everyone pretty much agreed that racial discrimiantion was wrong. But, racists keep rebranding themselves and arguing that discrimiantion is actually good. Keep deluding yourself.

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