Flashback: Kamala Harris’ Ancestors Owned Slaves. Father Didn’t Care for Pot Wisecrack

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Flashback: Kamala Harris’ Ancestors Owned Slaves. Father Didn’t Care for Pot Wisecrack

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Democrat presidential contender Joe Biden must not have run his vice-presidential pick, Senator Kamala Harris, by Black Lives Matter.

If he had, the Marxist outfit might well have nixed her and ordered Biden to pick Karen Bass, the hard-left sympathizer who supported communist mass-murderer Fidel Castro and worked for the Venceremos Brigade, a front for Cuban intelligence.

And why not Harris? Because, as the Washington Free Beacon reported last year in a story that went nowhere, she is the descendant of slave owners.

Pappa Harris’ Confession

The news came from Donald Harris, Kamala’s father, an economics professor at Stanford University.

In 2018, the Free Beacon reported, he wrote in the Jamaica Global that his grandmother descended from Hamilton Brown, a slave owner who gave the island nation’s Brown’s Town its name.

“My roots go back, within my lifetime, to my paternal grandmother Miss Chrishy (née Christiana Brown, descendant of Hamilton Brown who is on record as plantation and slave owner and founder of Brown’s Town),” Daddy Harris wrote.

Hamilton Brown built the town’s local Anglican Church, which is where Prof. Harris says his grandfather is buried. It is also where he himself was baptized and confirmed.

A research archive of Jamaican records indicate that at one point in 1817, Hamilton Brown owned scores of slaves. The majority were brought in from Africa, though he also owned many Creole slaves.

That might explain why Harris doesn’t support reparations for slavery, at least as reparations are traditionally understood: that blacks who were never slaves should receive direct payments for the servitude of their ancestors, real and imagined.

“I think that the word, the term reparations, it means different things to different people,” Harris told NPR. “But what I mean by it is that we need to study the effects of generations of discrimination and institutional racism and determine what can be done, in terms of intervention, to correct course.”

That said, Harris has suffered no ill effects from slavery, nor any from “discrimination,” and is a child of wealth and privilege — one of the “one percent,” as she might call it.

Her father, again, is a well-to-do college professor. Her mother is an Indian breast-cancer researcher.

As well, having served in multiple positions under the former flamboyant California House Speaker, Willie Brown, she rose quickly in politics and married a wealthy entertainment lawyer, Douglas Emhoff.

The couple’s net worth is almost $6 million.

We Are Not Pot Smokers

Professor Harris wasn’t just honest about his ancestry, the Free Beacon noted.

He was furious when his daughter said that Jamaicans are particularly fond of the Devil’s Lettuce, which is why she enjoyed puffing it herself.

Asked early last year if she supports legalizing the intoxicating plant, Harris had a ready answer. “Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?”

Admitting that she smoked it, Harris added that “I did inhale,” unlike Bill Clinton, who famously said he didn’t like it when he tried it and didn’t inhale.

“Listen, I think it gives a lot of people joy,” Harris said. “And we need more joy.”

The suggestion that “we” all should light a joint for joy didn’t sit well with her straight-laced father, who wrote to the Global that the remarks were one toke over the line:

My dear departed grandmothers (whose extraordinary legacy I described in a recent essay on this website), as well as my deceased parents, must be turning in their grave right now to see their family’s name, reputation and proud Jamaican identity being connected, in any way, jokingly or not with the fraudulent stereotype of a pot-smoking joy seeker and in the pursuit of identity politics.

Speaking for myself and my immediate Jamaican family, we wish to categorically dissociate ourselves from this travesty.

Harris has not said whether she will lobby as vice president to make marijuana legal, or make the Giggle Weed available for visitors to the vice presidential home at the Naval Observatory.


R. Cort Kirkwood is a long-time contributor to The New American and a former newspaper editor.

Courtesy of The New American