Ta-Nehisi Coates will vote for Bernie Sanders, reparations or no reparations

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Publicly voting for a candidate isn’t an endorsement?


Seems sort’a endorsement’y to me.


personal vs editorial


I read that as:
“Beyond the extent that I’m voting for Sanders, I’m not going out of my way to get others to vote for Sanders.”


The DN interview makes it pretty clear that he was reluctant to confess that he was voting for Sanders, but felt it a fair question, and so responded honestly, with multiple caveats.

This isn’t like “I want to talk about how I’m voting for Sanders,” it’s like “I want to talk about how Sanders is falling short of where I think I should be. But yeah, I’ll probably vote for him, even despite that.”


You’ve never voted for the lesser of two evils?

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Two? Did you see the results? I think there were 28 or so on the democrat side.

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I heard someone say on the radio once that reparations could maybe be something like increased aid in Africa. I’m not sure how controversial that has to be.

How about sentencing reform and an end to the drug war in the US? Not that we don’t need those things anyway, just that those things, and types of things, would help everyone, and African Americans too.

African slaves built us all a pretty good country, shouldn’t it be it’s best and fairest self in return.


He didn’t say he’s voting for Clinton.

Which defeats his whole argument, since his focus is on the lives of Black Americans, not people who aren’t living here and aren’t descended from slaves.


How would reparations actually be paid?

Would it be a stipend, a lump-sum disbursement, or perhaps tax credits?

Could it be deferred, accrued, and passed on to family members?

Would it be dependent on proving direct heritage from an ancestor who was enslaved, or would apply to all people of color?

OK then. I have to admit to not having read all of ‘On Reparations.’ I enjoy Coates though, I’ll have to get to it. ‘Between…’ is sure a great book.

And what about Native Americans? They should get something, too, it seems…

Was that what I was referring to?

Pretty clearly.

There are three articles on it by him now, as I recall, going back and forth with folks.

Part of the argument is that we built our entire nation and economy on slave labor.

Natives probably would deserve something similar but it is largely two separate issues since we didn’t breed them for labor for hundreds of years or buy and sell them.


Nope, this idea of voting as an “endorsement”…

You need to learn sarcasm.

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Not to repeat myself on this, but Sanders is to the lesser of two evils what Lindt is to shitty chocolate (i.e. not). This is also distinct thing from being amazing, excellent, or even good. I think based on the article that Coates understands this. People have really bought into the lesser of two evils thing in American electoral politics to the extent that they don’t realize that it’s not a fundamental law of the universe. Again, I find myself blaming Obama for capitalizing on exuberance or optimism in a way that made it harder for reform candidates to get elected.