Saturday, January 21, 2006

Reparations: More than $97 Trillion!


Estimated number of hours of labor performed by African-American slaves between 1619 and 1865: 222,505,049
SOURCE: Clarence J. Munford, Race and Reparations, African World Press, Inc.
(Trenton, N.J.)

Estimated value of the labor performed by African-American slaves between 1619 and 1865, compounded at 6 percent interest through 1993: $97,100,000,000,000


The 6% interest may have been the AVERAGE interest rate for the US from enslavement days up to the year Brotha Mumford published his calculations.

Another important point: these calculations DO NOT include wages for child labor (enslaved African children started work at about 3 years old) and for enslaved African women's housework to maintain the hovels we lived in and raising the children (i.e enslaved childrearing = appreciating capital). These values would take us to well over $150 trillion!

These figures are so mindblowingly
large that they make no sense to us until we can visualize them with everday things.

Everybody can visualize a penny.... Just $10trillion in pennies would be a halfmile wide cube weighing 3 billion tons!! (go to: to see a rendering).

But the real value of these estimates for Reparations is to emphasize how central our ancestors were in creating capitalism and this now megapowerful country. It is also to show- in another way -that there's really no amount of money on earth that can compensate for the monstrous crimes committed against us (past AND present)... for hundreds of years 24 hours a day 365 days a year of every form of humiliation and spiritual degradation known to humans and animals.

In Struggle,

Sam Anderson

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