Democratic Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee said Thursday there is a connection between slavery and the pandemic.
She insisted the commission be established by vote or executive order, arguing black people built the country. The congresswoman then linked slavery and COVID.
“There is no doubt we have been impacted, that DNA in the trajectory of slavey to today. For example, COVID. Black African-Americans have gotten COVID at a rate of nearly 1.5 times higher than that of white people, or hospitalized at a rate of nearly four times higher and three times likely to die. COVID hit us very desperately.”
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) gives powerful support for reparations for descendants of those enslaved in the U.S.:
“You did not see us attack this most solid and somber institution — sacred — on January 6, 2021. We were not the masses that were trying to undermine democracy.” pic.twitter.com/TVED0whyKV
— The Recount (@therecount) November 17, 2022
Lee then cited a Harvard study from 2021 that argued reparations would narrow the wealth gap and allow people more access to better health care, housing and more. (RELATED: California Reparations Report Demands Tree Planting In ‘Black Neighborhoods’ For ‘Shade Equity’)
“Reparations for African Americans could have cut COVID-19 transmission and infection rates among Blacks and the population at large. Reparations are curative, they’re not punishment.”
The COVID death rate was higher for black Americans compared to white Americans during the first few months of the pandemic, though recent data shows white Americans now have a higher death rate.
The Washington Post did an analysis on COVID deaths and racial disparities and found the death rates narrowed between the two racial groups simply because whites began dying at a much higher rate.