This is a wonderful piece.
What disappoints me most is that it actually must be written: hundreds of years after the fact, reparations should already have been addressed.
You mention that, when reparations are discussed, white people revert to talking about HOW it is going to get done, and this makes it more complicated than it is. I believe this is a deliberate strategy of the type that not only McConnell but a wide range of white people employ to delay their commission of moral behavior: It isn’t difficult to simply agree that white people have advantages over black people as a result of historically amoral behaviors, and that the financial disparities that result are directly due to historical behavior. Yet, there is a high degree of participation in self-deception.
To put it another way, the majority of white people (83%) do not believe in reparations. As a group, the crowd psychology appears to dictate “by any means necessary (we will avoid reparations),” reflecting the behaviors required to establish white supremacy. (By examining this, one can see how Malcolm X’s ‘by any means necessary’ is reactive to white supremacy’s fundamental ‘by any means necessary’ in all settings; that is, white people as a group can do whatever they want as long as they achieve the the most important goal: maintain power.)
As a result, the conclusion is: ‘no matter what, we are not giving up our money to black people,’ which reflects centuries of supremacist behavior, and nothing new. Many POC — even people who are not black and will not stand to gain from direct monies (all of us stand to gain from eliminating white supremacy) — see through this.
The majority of white people are reflecting their own history — white supremacy fascism covered in a false veneer of equality — so the strong propensity to deny reality is a regurgitation of the same tired and morally bereft response now witnessed worldwide by POC in every corner of the globe for half an era.
The easy part is admitting that money is owed, because it is so obvious it shouldn’t be a discussion point. White people view this as ‘giving up’ which is a distortion of reality; in fact, it is ‘giving back’ because, to some extent, what white people have does not belong to them.
McConnell — and the many millions of white Americans who support white supremacy while lying to themselves — are ruminating on the same piece of cud, regurgitating the same tired excuses for not engaging with moral behaviors.
Their desperation tells us that, even for them, the everlasting piece of 400 year cud is failing to provide nutritive value.