T.I. demands UK firm for reparations after apologizing for role in slavery
In a letter the respected rapper noted how Black people have been 'financially impaired & economically disabled due to the systemic oppression and institutional racism' slavery left behind
Atlanta-native rapper, T.I., wrote a two-page letter to Lloyd’s of London demanding reparations to descendants of African slaves.
The insurance giant can trace its roots to 1686 when it pioneered the market for marine insurance.
“Between a third and 40 percent of London marine insurance in the 18th Century was accounted for by the slave trade and by the movement of slave-grown produce across the Atlantic,” said Nick Draper, former director of the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slave-ownership.
T.I.’s letter read in part, “Our people have been financially impaired & economically disabled due to the systemic oppression and institutional racism it leaves behind.”
T.I. captioned an Instagram post featuring the letter. “TIME TO TAKE WHAT WE KNOW OUR ANCESTORS DESERVED & DIED FOR.”
The letter came after Lloyd’s of London issued a statement in June acknowledging its role in the slave trade. The company pledged to recruit more Black employees and to provide financial support to charities that promote diversity and inclusion.
“Your commitment to reparations is an honorable one, but commitment without tangible actions is merely lip service,” T.I. writes in the letter. “We demand a specific call to action that includes, but is not limited to direct reparations be made to the families who were ripped from their native lands and sold as property while your company profited from the whole shameful endeavor.”
The rapper listed four pathways to reparations that the company could follow.
The first being 10% ownership in the Lloyd’s be given to the descendants of African slaves. The second called for accurate annual tracking of reparations payments. Third, he called for a $1 million cash loan with 1% interest to every African American adult once in their lifetime for the next 200 years. Finally, for Lloyd’s of London to add at least one Black person to its board of directors.
Lloyd’s of London has yet to respond to the letter.
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