Thursday, June 25, 2020
TKC EXCLUSIVE!!! KANSAS CITY DEMAND FOR MORE 18TH & VINE FUNDING REFERENCES SLAVERY REPARATIONS!!!
Today at City Hall there's an interesting rhetorical gambit which references historic American atrocities and threatens to influence the current conversation regarding an embattled entertainment district now asking for SIX MILLION BUCKS from an already busted budget.
Throughout this discussion and amid outcry of "disinvestment" we've reminded our blog community that the Kansas City 18th & Vine Jazz District has garnered more than $100-MILLION since the 90s.
However, our admonition was met with an equally relevant response that deserves consideration.
To wit . . .
THE ARGUMENT FOR U.S. SLAVERY REPARATIONS JUSTIFIES HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS SPENT ON THE JAZZ DISTRICT AND SIX MILLION MORE THAT MIGHT BE APPROVED TODAY!!!
In a public response to our first news, here's the justification and the big picture from a jazz aficionado and supporter of the district:
"The only way to create economic parity in Kansas City is reparations. $100 million+ for business & neighborhood development won't make up for residents in neighborhood who have been robbed of opportunities to grow wealth and maintain investments. Fix the root issue first."
From our vantage this logic is a leap or, in jazz terms, scat gone astray. Policy makers at 12th & Oak, thankfully, don't have much of a say over reparations and it's unlikely this tune will play West of Troost. However, viewed from an increasingly popular perspective which demands reparations; cutting off funding from this district would, in fact, represent another racist refrain from lawmakers as demands to kneel in solidarity with Black Lives Matter activists now strike a chord across American popular culture.
For the moment it seems that Mayor Lucas hasn't voiced an opinion one way or another. And, most importantly, there's really no plan in place to spend the SIX MILLION BUCKS responsibly in order to work toward at least some semblance of self-sustainability for this increasingly violent urban attraction.
Sadly, the details of jazz district spending and fundamental economic principles of municipal spending aren't nearly as exciting as partisan campaign season slap-fighting or the prospect of free money from the government to redress historical grievances.
Check the links:
The Hill: UN human rights chief urges reparations for 'centuries of violence and discrimination' beginning with slavery and colonization
Forbes: An Overdue Debt — Why It’s Finally Time To Pay Reparations To Black Americans
NPR: A Call For Reparations: How America Might Narrow The Racial Wealth Gap
Reuters: Calls for reparations gain steam as U.S. reckons with racial injustice
Guardian UK: Calls for reparations are growing louder. How is the US responding?
You decide . . .