Charleston, SC Apologizes For Its Role In Slavery
Charleston is known for its history, as nearly half of all Africans brought to America as slaves came through this area.
Juneteenth spurred emotions that have long been held by black people in America. The national holiday calls for the celebration of the moment when freedom was true for the last remaining slaves in this country. Tuesday night in Charleston, SC, the city council made an official gesture in commemoration of Juneteenth—it had formally apologized for its role in slavery.
On a vote by a 7-5 margin, the Charleston City Council approved a resolution that denounces slavery and calls for tolerance in the future, according to live5news.com. “The world is looking,” said William Dudley Gregorie, the black city councilman who created the resolution, according to postandcourier.com, “This document … apologizes for the atrocities of the past.”
With four black city council members, not everyone wanted to vote in favor of the resolution. Perry Waring, a descendant of slaves, said the resolution would not do enough to create a level playing field economically. “We need to work on the economic side of things so our community can go forth together in harmony and financially,” Waring said. Bill Moody, another councilman to vote against the resolution, echoed those sentiments.
“I said an apology without any kind of works to go with it is really an empty apology,” Moody said.
In spite of the back and forth that became highly vitriolic, the resolution was ultimately passed. While much of the rancor was centered on events that occurred centuries ago. Gregorie said it has eerie parallels to some current events, saying, “I do think that as a council, we have an opportunity to make history, not to right wrongs, but to recognize that the seat of the Confederacy was wrong. It was wrong to enslave people. It was wrong to treat people as property and chattel and sell their children and breakup families. Sound familiar? It’s happening today, folks.”
Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @Okayplayer and pass this news on to your friends.
SOURCE: The State