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about

℗ 2020, Atop Industries | Salveter, Thomas (ASCAP)
© Mora Flontine Music (ASCAP)

lyrics

Mr. Speaker,
today I introduce
Proposition 127,
I would like to thank
my house colleagues
who have signed on
as original
co-sponsors of this legislation.

I begin this morning
with a quotation
from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
who believed
that the black community
should consolidate
their economic resources
as a means
to political power
yet at the same time
emphasized
that quote:
“we must not be oblivious to the fact that the larger economic
problems confronting the Negro community will only be solved by
federal programs involving billions of dollars”.

Reparations
for African Americans
are essential
if we wish
to strengthen
and preserve this nation,
if we wish
to grow beyond
our white supremacist-oligarchic identity,
and if we wish
to heal the wounds
that continue to burden
the black community
left by the institutions of slavery,
Jim Crow segregation,
and the era of mass incarceration.

After many failed attempts by committees on the federal level,
my colleagues and I are turning our focus to the state of
California for the development of a reparations fund for its black
citizenry. To create the capital, we’re proposing a ten-year
progressive tax on white workers in a multi-billion dollar industry
that was built from the stolen labor of African Americans. Since
its inception, the white dominated music industry has depended
on black expression as a free and plentiful resource. Whether
it’s been white artists imitating black artistry or record
executives preying on the lower classes, the corporate music
industry has amassed great wealth from the commodification of
black culture and exploitation of its black workers.

I am offering
The white workers
Of California’s music industry
the opportunity
to send a message
to the rest of the world,
to say
we are a compassionate nation
to say
we acknowledge our barbarity
to say
we seek out constructive ways
to repair
the damage done
to individuals
and their communities

A recent study from the Harvard Business School estimated the
lost wages of African Americans working in the music industry
between 1909 and 1977 at fourteen trillion dollars. Copyright
infringement, unpaid royalties, and discriminatory policies are
just a few examples of how this money never reached its rightful
recipients. On average, the music industry accounts for only 2%
of our annual GDP. Fourteen trillion dollars of lost wages in the
music industry alone over seventy years makes me wonder how
much there is to be accounted for in manufacturing, real estate,
or agriculture.

The time has come
to close the racial wealth gap
and embark on
a reparations program
that is therapeutic and restorative,
that combats political
and economic inequality,
and that expands our national
consciousness about slavery’s affects on the present.

Thank you Mr. Speaker, I yield back.

credits

from We is the Temple: Songs from The Fruit Stare Pod Opera Vol 1., released July 27, 2020
recorded and mixed by Nick Broste
mastered by Justin Dennis

The Fruit Stare Band:

Nick Broste – synths, keys
Jim Cooper – bass
Christopher Salveter - vocals
Dave Smith – baritone sax, flute
Jefferey Thomas – guitar
Nick Alvarez - drumkit
Jamie Levinson - drumkit
Andra Kulans – viola
Nora Barton - cello
Kent Lambert - vocals
Courtney Glascoe - vocals
Holly Stevens - vocals
Derik Kendall – guitar, violin
Billie Howard – violin
Rob Pleshar – tuba
Justin Amolsch – french horn
Jim McBride - trumpet
Ellis Seiberling – trombone
Dave Levine – flute

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The Fruit Stare Chicago, Illinois

The Fruit Stare is a foraging habit of orangutans and the name of a Chicago based human multi-media art group experimenting with narrative, sound, and performance.

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