US 1.4% of white Americans owned slaves

rainforests1

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And in many of these cases(possibly most) they weren't treated too poorly. Why should the vast majority of white Americans who despise slavery and had no relatives who took part in slavery feel guilty over this era?
 

Mischief

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My ancestors were still in Europe when the slaves in the U.S. were officially emancipated. That doesn't alter the fact that I recognize that, as an inhabitant of modern day America, I am benefiting from what was taken from Native Americans, the work of slaves, and the underpaid work of various disadvantaged groups still going on today.
 

Poppy

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My ancestors were too poor to own slaves. They did, however, fight for the south in the Civil War. And while they didn't actually own slaves, they certainly considered whites to be superior to blacks in all ways. I feel shame for that period in history and regret that the end of slavery didn't do much of anything to improve the lives of blacks for a very, very long time or put an end to racism.
 

kibbleforlola

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What Poppy and Mischief said. Most of my ancestors were still in Ireland at the time of the civil war. In fact, the patriarchs of both sides of my family came over when "Irish" was still coded as "not white". That doesn't mean that I don't get treated differently based on being coded as a white southern woman.

Also, even those that didn't own slaves perpetuated the idea that it was better to be poor and white than black. Many Klans members were never slave owners, they just feared loosing their position in society as black men gained rights. There is a lot to unpack surrounding race relations in the Antebellum and Reconstruction Era South. To say we have nothing to be ashamed of is a bold faced lie.
 

beancounter

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For those of you who believe that current minorities are owed something because of what their ancestors endured, how long should affirmative action type programs continue, and what will you use as the litmus test that such programs are no longer needed?

Also, are you willing to hand over your property to the descendants of the Indians whose land was taken from them?

For those of you who do not own land. Your cell phone, car and computer all contain metals and other materials that came from the ground. The ground that the Indians owned. It's time for you to give them back to their rightful owners....

Or is that "not the same thing"...
 
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Nightshade

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For those of you who believe that current minorities are owed something because of what their ancestors endured, how long should affirmative action type programs continue, and what will you use as the litmus test that such programs are no longer needed?

Affirmative action isn't reparation. It helps protect minorities from blatant discriminatory practices which favor white males.
 

ledboots

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For those of you who believe that current minorities are owed something because of what their ancestors endured, how long should affirmative action type programs continue, and what will you use as the litmus test that such programs are no longer needed?

Also, are you willing to hand over your property to the descendants of the Indians whose land was taken from them?

For those of you who do not own land. Your cell phone, car and computer all contain metals and other materials that came from the ground. The ground that the Indians owned. It's time for you to give them back to their rightful owners....

Or is that "not the same thing"...
Native Americans are overwhelmingly disadvantaged and should of course be immediate recipients of affirmative action to help each person attain his goals as easily as if he and his ancestors had been in the place of privilege in society.

The playing field still isn't level.
 

Envy

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It seems far more appropriate to feel regret and guilt over what happens today rather than what happened then.
 

Mischief

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It seems far more appropriate to feel regret and guilt over what happens today rather than what happened then.

It strikes me that generally the people who feel no regret or guilt over what happened then are also the ones who don't see/acknowledge what is still going on today, much less feeling any regret or guilt about it.
 
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rainforests1

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It strikes me that generally the people who feel no regret or guilt over what happened then are also the ones who don't see/acknowledge what is still going on today, much less feeling any regret or guilt about it.
I don't believe in collective guilt and believe humans should be judged as individuals rather than as a group. Arguably the two biggest murderers in history(Genghis and Mao) were Asian. Does collective guilt apply to them as well? No. If you're going to push collective guilt, you have to be consistent about it. The US media isn't.
 

rainforests1

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To say we have nothing to be ashamed of is a bold faced lie.
Fighting two World Wars no countries had any business fighting. Developing nuclear weapons and factory farms, among other things. Taking over three continents and dominating the world(not for the better). Just a few examples. There's a lot to be ashamed of.
 

Mischief

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I don't believe in collective guilt and believe humans should be judged as individuals rather than as a group. Arguably the two biggest murderers in history(Genghis and Mao) were Asian. Does collective guilt apply to them as well? No. If you're going to push collective guilt, you have to be consistent about it. The US media isn't.

You might want to be a little more informed about differentiating between racial/ethnic/national groups. Genghis Khan and Mao come from the same racial/ethnic/national groups as much as Mao and the Emperor of Japan do, or as a Sioux and an Englishman do.

Your premise is flawed in other ways too. For example, a lot of collective guilt is imposed on the Japanese for what they did in China. And rightfully so, IMO
 

kibbleforlola

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You might want to be a little more informed about differentiating between racial/ethnic/national groups. Genghis Khan and Mao come from the same racial/ethnic/national groups as much as Mao and the Emperor of Japan do, or as a Sioux and an Englishman do.

Your premise is flawed in other ways too. For example, a lot of collective guilt is imposed on the Japanese for what they did in China. And rightfully so, IMO

Mmhmmm. I spent a year in Korea, and my Korean co-workers would tell me about Japanese-Korean tensions, and how it went back 1000's of years. Tangent: it's actually the Japanese that decided that Korea would be spelled with a K using the English alphabet, because K comes after J. So sometimes you would see Korea spelled out "Corea" as a form of national pride. This was especially true because I was there when Korea was in the World Cup, so you saw a lot of soccer memorabilia with "Corea" sprawled across it.

And as for my "shame", bit, I was specifically speaking towards slavery. And I think we are interested more in slavery more than, say, Genghis Kahn, because slavery is part of our own personal, relatively recent, history.
 

Mischief

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Yes. People from the west tend to conflate all the different people who live in Asia, as though they were all one racial/ethnic group. From contemporary accounts, it appears that Genghis Khan may have had red hair and green eyes.

And I think we are interested more in slavery more than, say, Genghis Kahn, because slavery is part of our own personal, relatively recent, history.

Yup. And the descendants of slaves were still being treated as less than fully human within the lifetimes of many of us. A not insignificant number of Americans still seem to hold that view.
 

Clueless Git

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One question;

How many generations back is this guilt we are supposed to feel about things our ancestors supposed to go back for?

Neanderthals?

Monkeys?

The first self replicating amino acid molecule that formed in the primeval pond slime?
 

nigel1

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One question;

How many generations back is this guilt we are supposed to feel about things our ancestors supposed to go back for?

Neanderthals?

Monkeys?

The first self replicating amino acid molecule that formed in the primeval pond slime?

I think we can solidly blame the British, Spanish, Dutch and Portuguese for bringing African slaves to the Americas. Native Americans already practiced slavery in many areas, and that may have been brought over with their oldest ancestors, so let's blame the Chinese.
 

Blobbenstein

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we could blame grass....it evolved to set on fire thus clearing the forests of Africa and forcing our ancestors out on to the plain to learn to walk around making a nuisance of ourselves.