Saturday, August 16, 2008

House apologizes for slavery and Jim Crow.....McCain should do his own.....

House apologizes for slavery and Jim Crow
Resolution does not mention reparations; commits to rectifying 'misdeeds'

Associated Press

updated 7:23 p.m. ET July 29, 2008

WASHINGTON - The House on Tuesday issued an unprecedented apology to black Americans for the wrongs committed against them and their ancestors who suffered under slavery and Jim Crow segregation laws.

"Today represents a milestone in our nation's efforts to remedy the ills of our past," said Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Mich., chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus.
The resolution, passed by voice vote, was the work of Tennessee Democrat Steve Cohen, the only white lawmaker to represent a majority black district. Cohen faces a formidable black challenger in a primary face-off next week.

Congress has issued apologies before — to Japanese-Americans for their internment during World War II and to native Hawaiians for the overthrow of the Hawaiian kingdom in 1893. In 2005, the Senate apologized for failing to pass anti-lynching laws.

Five states have issued apologies for slavery, but past proposals in Congress have stalled, partly over concerns that an apology would lead to demands for reparations — payment for damages.

No mention of reparationsThe Cohen resolution does not mention reparations. It does commit the House to rectifying "the lingering consequences of the misdeeds committed against African-Americans under slavery and Jim Crow."

It says that Africans forced into slavery "were brutalized, humiliated, dehumanized and subjected to the indignity of being stripped of their names and heritage" and that black Americans today continue to suffer from the consequences of slavery and Jim Crow laws that fostered discrimination and segregation.

The House "apologizes to African-Americans on behalf of the people of the United States, for the wrongs committed against them and their ancestors who suffered under slavery and Jim Crow."
"Slavery and Jim Crow are stains upon what is the greatest nation on the face of the earth," Cohen said. Part of forming a more perfect union, he said, "is such a resolution as we have before us today where we face up to our mistakes and apologize as anyone should apologize for things that were done in the past that were wrong."

White lawmaker reaches outCohen became the first white to represent the 60 percent black district in Memphis in more than three decades when he captured a 2006 primary in which a dozen black candidates split the vote. He has sought to reach out to his black constituents, and early in his term showed interest in joining the Congressional Black Caucus until learning that was against caucus rules.
Another of his first acts as a freshman congressman in early 2007 was to introduce the slavery apology resolution. His office said that the House resolution was brought to the floor only after learning that the Senate would be unable to join in a joint resolution.

More than a dozen of the 42 Congressional Black Caucus members in the House were original co-sponsors of the measure. The caucus has not endorsed either Cohen or his chief rival, attorney Nikki Tinker, in the Memphis primary, although Cohen is backed by several senior members, including Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y. Tinker is the former campaign manager of Harold Ford, Jr., who held Cohen's seat until he stepped down in an unsuccessful run for the Senate in 2006.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

McCain once opposed the proposal for the creation of a public holiday honoring Martin Luther King. He, now as an official presidential candidate, should make a public apology for such disrespect against honoring the memory of Martin Luther King. McCain should also make an official retraction against his own proposal that the US has the privilege to rule Iraq for the next one hundred years. McCain should really make those public announcements to prove to the whole world that he is not a closet-racist and is really a progressive politician. And McCain ought to do those things so that he can catch up with the widening lead of Obama over him in the recent surveys conducted regarding the coming US presidential election.

It is important for McCAIN to those things since he is also saying to the US public that what he is offering to them is actually progressive politics of social change. McCain has to break down the barriers, so to speak. He has to dissolve that huge wall of controversies regarding his stance on racial equality and his empire-building policy in Iraq. Winning the US presidency should not be the only thing that should matter to the McCain presidential campaign. It is also improtant that McCain should be presented to world opinion as a leader who can rationally, empirically and pragmatically work for global peace, harmony and cooperation. McCain should also be presented to the US public as a man who can allow catalyst policies to further the gains of the peaceful and lawful struggle for racial equality. That's how it should be for the McCain-presidential campaign.

As of now McCain is widely perceived by many citizens of the world as JOHN RAMBO MCCAIN, JOHN WAR MCCHINE, or JOHN MCCHAIN. JOHN MCCAIN is also being depicted as John MyCain (sometimes as John "My Cain" to highlight "Cain" on that tag) because of his seeming readiness to use means that may go against international law. Such should not be that way! McCain has the choice to present himself properly to the critical eyes of the wise citizens of this globe.

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