The Dallas County Commissioners Court accidentally declared Tuesday that African-Americans deserve reparations for slavery.
Most commissioners did not seem to know that they were doing so.
The issue arose in a resolution written by John Wiley Price, the county’s only black commissioner. Described only as a “Juneteenth Resolution,” it was approved unanimously.
Other commissioners admitted after their meeting Tuesday that they hadn’t read the document before voting for it.
Commissioner Mike Cantrell, the court’s lone Republican, later changed his vote to an abstention.
“The reason why I didn’t abstain this morning is that I had not received a copy of the resolution,” he said.
None of the other commissioners changed their votes. It is a nonbinding resolution, and no tax money will change hands as a result of its passage.
Price’s resolution included a long list of injustices endured by blacks, ranging from slavery to predatory lending practices. Its final paragraph declared that the suffering of African-Americans should be “satisfied with monetary and substantial reparations.”
Price read the entire document out loud at the meeting, a practice that happens with every resolution. With no discussion, the measure was approved by voice vote. Roughly an hour later, other commissioners complained that they had not been given copies of the resolution before they voted.
Price noted that other ethnic groups, such as American Indians and Japanese Americans have received compensation for past mistreatment. “We are the only people who haven’t been compensated,” he said.
Where do you stand on the reparations debate?
Should blacks be compensated for slavery? What does that form of repayment look like?
Sound off below!