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Do You Remember When Denzel Washington Addressed Reparations for Black Americans on ‘Arsenio?’ | WATCH

*Despite it being under the radar, reparations for Black Americans are still a hot topic of discussion among many people. Travel back in time and you will find a well-known person weighing in on the subject. That person: Denzel Washington. The year: 1992. The place: “The Arsenio Hall Show.”

According to Moguldom, Washington was promoting his then-new movie “Malcolm X” when he addressed reparations. In the actor’s eyes, America owed a debt to Black people that needs to be paid.

“One of the most terrible crimes in the history of mankind took place in this country where close to 350 years, Black people were murdered, raped, hung, and forced to work for no money,” Washinton told host Arsenio Hall. “And forced to work for no money–not for a year, not for three years, not for 10 years, but for 350 years, and that debt has not been paid…we don’t really deal with it; white people don’t deal with it, Black people don’t deal with it. We really have to look at what happened here.”

Washington’s interview took place decades ago. Yet his remarks hit hard to this day. Reuters notes the divide in public opinion in the United States when it comes to reparations. A survey the news agency conducted with Ipsos found that 58% of Democrats support reparations, while only 18% of Republicans supported the notion. Racially speaking, 74% of Black Americans favor reparations compared to just 26% of white Americans.

Denzel Washington
Denzel Washington (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Although reparations bills have been introduced in the House and Senate to create a commission to address the historical injustices of slavery and the subsequent racial and economic discrimination faced by Black Americans, they have remained without progress.

Whether or not reparations will truly happen remains to be seen.

In the meanwhile, Washington remains active on the acting front with an upcoming film.

The 68-year-old Oscar winner is on board to portray legendary Carthaginian general Hannibal in the feature, which will reunite him with director Antoine Fuqua. Variety references the movie’s official logline, which states the project is “based on real-life warrior Hannibal, who is widely regarded as one of the greatest military commanders in history” Among periods covered in the film will be pivotal battles Hannibal led against the Roman Republic during the Second Punic War.

The forthcoming movie will mark the latest collaboration between Washington and Fuqua. The pair previously worked together on the Academy Award-winning film “Training Day” as well as “The Equalizer” series of films–2014’s “The Equalizer,” 2018’s “The Equalizer 2,” and 2023’s “The Equalizer 3.”

MORE NEWS ON EURWEB: Denzel Washington Reunites with Antoine Fuqua for Netflix’s ‘Hannibal’ Epic

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