The recently passed COVID relief bill had $5 billion in provisions intended to help Black and brown farmers who have historically been the victims of systemic racism within the Department of Agriculture. Predictably, white folks have a problem with that and have filed a lawsuit against the federal government, claiming that they’re being discriminated against.
According to ABC News, the plaintiffs of the suit include farmers from Ohio, Wisconsin, South Dakota, and Ohio. The relief package will provide $4 billion in loan forgiveness for farmers who are Black, Native American, Hispanic, Asian, or of Pacific Islander descent. The plaintiffs allege that they’re being discriminated against because if they weren’t white, they would be eligible for the benefits.
“Were plaintiffs eligible for the loan forgiveness benefit, they would have the opportunity to make additional investments in their property, expand their farms, purchase equipment and supplies, and otherwise support their families and local communities,” the lawsuit said. “Because plaintiffs are ineligible to even apply for the program solely due to their race, they have been denied the equal protection of the law and therefore suffered harm.”
White people get treated like Black people just once and simply don’t know what to do. The problem with this suit is that no one is being left out of anything. The whole reason the loan forgiveness program was created is because Black and brown farmers have received inadequate treatment and access to resources for decades. This isn’t people being denied benefits because they’re white; it’s a first step in trying to fix what’s been a historically broken system.
The suit was filed in Green Bay by attorneys with the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, so yeah, this case isn’t ideologically driven at all. The suit wants the Department of Agriculture to no longer use race as a factor for determining eligibility for loan forgiveness as well as unspecified damages.
The Department of Agriculture has said that while it’s reviewing the lawsuit with the Department of Justice, it still intends to provide loan forgiveness for “socially disadvantaged” farmers. How, oh how are these white farmers ever going to manage in a system built specifically to their advantage? Lord only knows.