From: Edmund

Sent: Sunday, September 06, 2020 7:29 AM


Subject: Yellowstone

Hi Walter,

I’ve just begun watching a fascinating new tv series called Yellowstone that describes the quarrels of Indians and cowboys in the modern day fighting over who is the rightful owner to the land. The cowboys have had the land for 6 generations and the Indians claim the land was stolen which the cowboys don’t seem to refute. Given that this fact seems to be accepted by both sides what should be the resolution of this dispute under libertarian law. I understand that you support reparations if one can prove that they are the rightful beneficiary from property that was stolen from their ancestors. But what constitutes enough proof? What forms of reparations would you consider reasonable in today’s society with groups like native Americans, African Americans etc.



Dear Edmund:

I’d have to know the specifics.

Also, there are continuum problems that make it difficult to respond:

Block, Walter E. and William Barnett II. 2008. “Continuums” Journal Etica e Politica / Ethics & Politics, Vol. 1, pp. 151-166 June;

Here are my pubs on reparations:

Alston and Block, 2007; Block, 1993, 2001, 2002, 2019, 2014, 2020A, 2020B; Block and Yeatts, 1999-2000; Crepelle and Block, 2017; Nouveau and Block, 2020.

Alston, Wilton D. and Walter E. Block. 2007. “Reparations, Once Again.” Human Rights Review, Vol. 9, No. 3, September, pp. 379-392;

Block, Walter E. 1993. “Malcolm X,” Fraser Forum, January, pp. 18-19;

Block, Walter E. 2001. “The Moral Dimensions of Poverty, Entitlements and Theft,” The Journal of Markets and Morality, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 83-93;; Search for “Walter Block” under “Authors” here:

Block, Walter E. 2002A. “On Reparations to Blacks for Slavery,” Human Rights Review, Vol. 3, No. 4, July-September, pp. 53-73;

(David Horowitz, Randall Robinson)

Block, Walter E. 2020B. “Return of Stolen Property: A Libertarian Case for Reparations.” December 18;

Block, Walter E. 2019. “Return of Stolen Property: A Libertarian Case for Reparations.” December 23;

Block, Walter E. 2020. “Reparations.” February 16;

Block, Walter E. and Guillermo Yeatts. 1999-2000. “The Economics and Ethics of Land Reform: A Critique of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace’s ‘Toward a Better Distribution of Land: The Challenge of Agrarian Reform,’” Journal of Natural Resources and Environmental Law, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 37-69;

Crepelle, Adam and Walter E. Block. 2017. “Property Rights and Freedom:  The Keys to Improving Life in Indian Country.” Washington & Lee Journal of Civil Rights and Social Justice; Vol. 23, Issue 2, Article, 3, pp. 314-342;

Houma Indian

Nouveau, Lucas and Walter E. Block. 2020. “A comment on reparations for slavery.” Libertas: Segunda Epoca;

Best regards,



3:26 am on October 28, 2020