Two local community groups are calling on the city of Louisville to start a serious conversation about reparations.They say the death of Breonna Taylor has made Louisville ground zero in the fight against racial injustice.Kathleen Parks is a Jefferson County Commissioner and president of the Louisville chapter of the National Action Network. She’s also known as the First Lady of Reparations for Slavery at American Slaves, Inc.The two groups held a joint press conference Friday afternoon following Wednesday’s announcement from Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron that no charges would be filed in Taylor’s death.”Her death is the after effect of 400 years of slavery and systemic racism,” Parks said.Parks says the term reparations has become misunderstood.”Reparations just simply means to repair. Repair 400 years of slavery and systemic racisms and structural economic racism,” Parks said.Dr. Norris Shelton is the president and founder of American Slaves, Inc. The organization works to examine the effects the aftermath of slavery have caused in America, especially in the business world. Shelton spent decades examining how to move the country past racial injustice once and for all and has written several books about it.His most recent book, “COVID-19 Windfall: American Slaves Birthright,” looks at how the COVID-19 pandemic and the death of Breonna Taylor has exposed the discrimination and inequities that still exist in the Black community and the positive outcomes that can come from it. “Reparations for slavery cannot be paid the way the average person thinks it can be paid,” Shelton said.He says that payment must come in the form of opportunity, especially economic opportunity.”Reparations for slavery has to provide an avenue to the economic battlefield as Dr. Martin Luther King told us,” Shelton said. Parks has submitted a reparations resolution to the Louisville Metro Council that not only calls on the city to apologize for its enforcement of Jim Crow laws and urban renewal programs that have displaced Black communities, but also calls on them to invest in more affordable housing and the creation of cultural business incubators.”You can’t do it through window dressing programs. You can’t legislate people’s hearts, but you can pass laws, and bills, and ordinances that benefit not only descendants of American slaves, but all people,” Parks said.Both groups want to see the same investment and opportunities in Black communities that are offered in other parts of the city.”It is time to share the wealth in this city, in this commonwealth, in this nation. We’re not asking for a handout. We’re asking a hand up,” Parks said.

Two local community groups are calling on the city of Louisville to start a serious conversation about reparations.

They say the death of Breonna Taylor has made Louisville ground zero in the fight against racial injustice.

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Kathleen Parks is a Jefferson County Commissioner and president of the Louisville chapter of the National Action Network. She’s also known as the First Lady of Reparations for Slavery at American Slaves, Inc.

The two groups held a joint press conference Friday afternoon following Wednesday’s announcement from Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron that no charges would be filed in Taylor’s death.

“Her death is the after effect of 400 years of slavery and systemic racism,” Parks said.

Parks says the term reparations has become misunderstood.

“Reparations just simply means to repair. Repair 400 years of slavery and systemic racisms and structural economic racism,” Parks said.

Dr. Norris Shelton is the president and founder of American Slaves, Inc. The organization works to examine the effects the aftermath of slavery have caused in America, especially in the business world.

Shelton spent decades examining how to move the country past racial injustice once and for all and has written several books about it.

His most recent book, “COVID-19 Windfall: American Slaves Birthright,” looks at how the COVID-19 pandemic and the death of Breonna Taylor has exposed the discrimination and inequities that still exist in the Black community and the positive outcomes that can come from it.

“Reparations for slavery cannot be paid the way the average person thinks it can be paid,” Shelton said.

He says that payment must come in the form of opportunity, especially economic opportunity.

“Reparations for slavery has to provide an avenue to the economic battlefield as Dr. Martin Luther King told us,” Shelton said.

Parks has submitted a reparations resolution to the Louisville Metro Council that not only calls on the city to apologize for its enforcement of Jim Crow laws and urban renewal programs that have displaced Black communities, but also calls on them to invest in more affordable housing and the creation of cultural business incubators.

“You can’t do it through window dressing programs. You can’t legislate people’s hearts, but you can pass laws, and bills, and ordinances that benefit not only descendants of American slaves, but all people,” Parks said.

Both groups want to see the same investment and opportunities in Black communities that are offered in other parts of the city.

“It is time to share the wealth in this city, in this commonwealth, in this nation. We’re not asking for a handout. We’re asking a hand up,” Parks said.

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