20 years ago a new constitution was enacted in Colombia. Although it is still less than perfect, a) for starters, it wasn’t written by the winners of a civil war (as it used to happen there) and b) it was an inclusive one, i.e. minorities had a place in its writing.
However, pre-Columbian descendants wanted to start the whole Constitution-making proccess by denouncing the “white men’s” misdeeds. The proposal was easily overruled, because… er, Colombia is a country with a huge mestizo population and very few people could claim “purity of blood” or “purity of race” or whatever.
As somebody poetically said, Colombians (and most latinos) are both the knife and the wound.
That said, it is easier to understand why people should not accept guilt/take blame for something they didn’t do. And I will concede this is a difficult theme to address, because like anybody that knows Godwin’s law, there’s the case of Nazi Germany to be analyzed. Germans were blamed as a whole because they let Hitler to rise to power by direct action or by glaring omission.
But you could not blame a German born after the war for anything that happened before they were born, do you? So you can infer that these unless you acted personally discriminating against the blacks (or african-americans), there’s no blame to take (or feel).
My, this is a really difficult issue.
- Constitutions, reparations and guilt (paulmarsic.wordpress.com)
- Colombia Moves Past Reconciliation and Revives the Idea of Reparation (alternet.org)
- Psychology and the Natural Law of Reparation Download PDF … (sciencenewsarticles.org)