Publications/Amicus Brief


White Advocates File Brief in Support of Corporate Restitution Claims
Group Cites a “Double Standard” of Jurisprudence

Counsel for Caucasians United for Reparations and Emancipation (CURE) filed a brief before the Supreme Court of the United States in support of the case of Farmer-Paellmann v. Brown & Williamson, No. 06-1533. CURE, filing as a Friend of the Court, is not a party to the case but has a strong interest in the matter. Farmer-Paellmann, leader of the Corporate Restitution Movement, is petitioning for Supreme Court review of a decision recently made by Chicago’s Seventh Circuit Court.

"We are privileged to offer assistance, however small, in this historic case" said Ida Hakim, CEO of Caucasians United for Reparations and Emancipation. "The courage and dedication of Ms. Farmer-Paellmann and the Restitution Study Group in bringing this to the highest court in the country is inspiring to all who work toward justice in America.”

The question at issue in this case is whether the statutes of limitations should be suspended (tolled) to permit slave descendants to bring actions for restitution. The Seventh Circuit Court found that an evidentiary hearing on the matter was unnecessary. Farmer-Paellmann seeks to be granted a review of that decision.

CURE’s Amicus Curiae Brief was written by Craig Webster, a personal injury and product liability attorney from Norcross, Georgia with support from CURE member Hugh Esco, a former Georgia Green Party candidate. The pleadings were submitted "to illustrate the impact of the Seventh Circuit's decision on those who understand the need to repair the damage left by our nation's institutional commitment to slavery and other manifestations of the ideology of white supremacy."

"After the Seventh Circuit decision I feared that we were once again being ruled by Plessy justice," said Hugh Esco, referring to the 1896 U.S. Supreme Court case which enforced segrgeation, making inequality a concrete reality. To underline his point, Esco quoted the CURE brief: "The lower courts have handed the Petitioners a ‘double standard’ of jurisprudence by expecting them to have acted with extreme diligence in pursuing their claims when it took over one and a half century for our judicial system to even recognize their right to bring a civil action against private companies."

"We don’t even begin to have equality in this country, and I don’t believe we will until my people are forced to recognize the imbalance," said Ferrell Winfree, CURE officer born and raised in Tennessee. “As a white person living in the South, I am fully and sadly aware of the racism that still exists in everyday life for Black people. This will only change with real and true reparations, and restitution is a part of that."

For more information on Deadria Farmer-Paellmann v. Brown & Williamson visit

* Read an Excerpt from the Amicus Brief

* Purchase CURE's Amicus Brief by postal mail