‘We have to DO STUFF NOW’: Biden adviser says White House to start redressing systemic racism, not just wait for reparations study


President Joe Biden will push ahead on making amends for America’s “systemic racism,” creating more opportunities for black people right away rather than waiting for a reparations study, a White House adviser said.

“We don’t want to wait on a study,” Cedric Richmond, director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, said in an ‘Axios on HBO’ interview. “We’re going to start acting now.”

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki confirmed on February 17 that Biden supports legislation in the Democrat-controlled Congress to fund a study on paying reparations for slavery and discrimination dating from 1619 to present. While critics, such as former presidential candidate Marianne Williamson, suggested that a study is a way of stalling, Richmond said the Biden administration is ready to take action.

“We have to start breaking down systemic racism and barriers that have held people of color back and especially African Americans,” he said. “We have to do stuff now.”

For instance, Richmond said that providing free tuition at historically black colleges and universities and free community college tuition to black people would put the government “well on your way” to redressing slavery and discrimination. An executive order signed by Biden in January calls for full implementation of the Fair Housing Act, which Richmond said will help break down barriers in housing and wealth-building.

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