The idea of paying Black Americans reparations for slavery has been around for a long time, but it’s starting to get more support than ever. So we ask: If the country does agree to pay up, how do you calculate the bill? And how could the U.S. come up with that kind of cash? To find out, we talk to historian and farmer Leah Penniman, economist Prof. William Darity Jr., public policy scholar Assistant Prof. Naomi Zewde, and Ebony Pickett.
UPDATE 10/30/20: An earlier version of this episode said that the average White person who didn't finish high school makes more money than the average Black person who graduated from college. The actual statistic is about net worth, rather than income, so we removed this reference. We’ve updated the episode.
Check out the transcript here: https://bit.ly/3kSFe3q
This episode was produced by Rose Rimler and Anoa Changa with help from Wendy Zukerman, Hannah Harris Green, Michelle Dang, and Nick DelRose. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Fact checking by Erica Akiko Howard. Mix and sound design by Sam Bair. Music written by Peter Leonard, Emma Munger, Bobby Lord and Marcus Bagala. Baby sounds provided by Hunter and Lyric. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode including Sophia Clark, Dr. Dania Francis, Dr. Dionissi Alliprantis, Prof. Kristen Broady, Prof. Rashawn Ray, Dr. Rhonda Vonshay Sharpe, Prof. Henry Thompson, Prof. Richard Edwards, and Prof. Steve Greenlaw. A special thanks to the Zukerman family, Walter Rimler, and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.