Historic housing and lending discrimination against black Americans has created a significant discrepancy in their overall wealth – a gap that may take reparations to close, according to research published by two Oregon State University faculty members.
Jonathan Kaplan, associate professor and chair of the Department of Philosophy, and Andrew Valls, assistant professor in the Department of Political Science, published their study in the July issue of Public Affairs Quarterly. In the study, they argue for a shift from viewing reparations in the framework of slavery to emphasizing relatively recent housing discrimination practices which continue to put people of color at a disadvantage.
The average black American has only about 15 percent as much wealth as the average white American, even though black Americans earn about 60 percent as much as white Americans. And at every income level, white Americans have much more wealth than black.