40 Acres and a Mule

By Richard Coleman, Stafford County Democratic Committee Member

What is “40 acres and a mule” worth, and who is entitled to it? I would guess that most Americans do not recognize the significance of that question. However, many Black Americans recognize it as the reparation promised to slaves after the Civil War. It was promised, not delivered. So does America still owe on that promise, and what is it worth? I believe the worth is not to be measured as a cash value, but should be measured as what “40 acres and a mule” provided.  America in 1865 was a farming society. So, “40 acres and a mule” was considered the basic requirement to be self-sufficient, contributing members of a free society. That provision promised to newly freed slaves in 1865 is still owed to all Americans, and we need to make those payments.

We must ensure that everyone is granted equal treatment and protection under the law, regardless of race, religion or economic status. We must ensure that everyone is granted adequate medical care regardless of the circumstances they find themselves in. We must ensure that everyone is afforded the opportunity for an education that allows them to maximize their potential, regardless of which section of town they live in. In short, we must ensure that everyone is enabled to be a self- sufficient contributing member of a free society. Regardless of the faults of the founders, to be the nation they envisioned we must move past con artists who would deny respect and opportunity for all. No one should sit on the sidelines in November. We must be in the voting booth to put those individuals truly committed to respect and opportunity for all in positions of public leadership.

This is a post by a member of the Stafford County Democratic Committee. This post does not necessarily reflect the views of the Stafford County Democratic Committee, the Democratic Party of Virginia, or the Democratic Party of America.

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