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  • Norman Young

Trump Should Endorse Slavery Reparations

Last year, President Donald Trump led my party, during its lame duck session, in making a bold move on race issues. In late December, less than a month before the Democrats took over the House, the Senate passed, the House approved, and Trump signed the First Step Act, a prison reform bill. This was a startling move for Trump, who styled himself a law-and-order conservative, and who proved willing to enforce laws in ways the Democrats would often criticize. And yet, despite his hyper-conservative track-record, Trump reached out a hand of trust to the black community. Last year, Catherine Toney became the first black woman released from prison under Trump’s new Act. Even Van Jones, former Obama administration czar, admitted that “the conservative movement in this country … is now the leader on this issue of reform.”

Not to be outdone, contenders for the Democratic nomination decided to make waves on race issues, themselves. Candidates Julián Castro, Kamala Harris, and Elizabeth Warren, all voiced support for a policy of slavery reparations, but they are a bit fuzzy on the details. Most have tried to define Democratic Party boilerplate policies as already reparative in some way. This is hardly leadership. And, a failure of leadership among Democrats creates a unique opportunity for conservatives to remain on the forefront of racial issues.