Descendants

An original series from The Washington Post


Nicole Ellis investigates the lasting influence of slavery on American life, the reparations debate and the challenges of charting your family tree.

Featuring
Additional Credits
Lauren Saks, Michelle Jaconi, Brian Monroe, Ross Godwin

Featuring
Additional Credits
Lauren Saks, Michelle Jaconi, Brian Monroe, Ross Godwin

Up next in Descendants
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White Supremacy in the U.S. Capitol
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Georgia's Senate races put a spotlight on voter suppression. Here's how it works.
December 22, 2020
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This former sundown county expelled 1,100 black residents in a racial cleansing
October 2, 2020
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George Floyd was a catalyst, but 325 years of racism led to removing confederate statues in Richmond
September 19, 2020

The citizen's arrest law cited in Ahmaud Arbery's death was created to control the Black population.

September 29, 2020 | 4:01 PM GMT
Ahmaud Arbery’s death was one of multiple flash points this year that’s made people question whether or not the foundation of America’s justice system is equality or racism. Georgia's citizen's arrest law has historically been used to reinforce the racial hierarchy they were created to uphold by providing cover for whites who were oppressing blacks. They were written in 1861 by Thomas Cobb, a lawyer, slave owner, Confederate Congressman, and co-founder of University of Georgia's law school who wrote the book of record on why Black people should be enslaved. Host, Nicole Ellis speaks with historians and lawmakers about legal codes written by the Confederate Congress of Georgia.