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Is It Time for Georgia to Officially Acknowledge Slavery?

A Georgia legislator has proposed a resolution aimed at expressing remorse for the state’s "past practice of condoning involuntary servitude.” What do you think of the proposal?

A practice that ended before the birth of anyone alive today is the focus of legislation in the Georgia General Assembly.

Last week, State Sen. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville, held a press conference to announce his filing of Senate Resolution 28, a resolution that aims to “[express] remorse for the state's past practice of condoning involuntary servitude,” or slavery. A copy of the resolution is attached to this article in PDF form.

According to Loudermilk, passage of the resolution would mark the first official acknowledgement of the injustices of slavery and serve as “an official expression of regret and remorse for the condoning of the institution of slavery in Georgia.

“The injustices brought on by the institution of slavery in our state's past stands in stark opposition to the principles on which this nation was founded. According to our founding documents, the sole responsibility of government is to preserve the God-given rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” Loudermilk said in a news release. “The filing of [the] Freedom Resolution represents an important first step for our state, in recognizing the reprehensible act of slavery, and to bring reconciliation among the people of this great state.

“I am optimistic that my colleagues in both chambers will recognize the significance of this resolution, and we will work together in a strong bipartisan effort to pass it in this legislative session,” Loudermilk added. “Many people have worked together in drafting this resolution, including legislators, Georgia citizens and members of the clergy.”

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, this isn’t the first time a Georgia lawmaker has attempted to get a resolution like this passed. Then-Senate President Pro Tem Eric Johnson, R-Savannah, made such a push in 2007 and 2009, while black House Democrats have attempted too; none of the proposals were passed by the General Assembly.

What do you think? Is it time we passed this resolution or do state legislators have more pressing present day issues on which to focus their attention?

This question was initially asked on Kennesaw Patch. See what people had to say about it there.

Racer X April 29, 2013 at 02:30 PM
Sweet. Let's get this party started.
Greg Mack April 30, 2013 at 12:33 PM
let's start by removing race from applications (what do we need to know a person's race?)...let's acknowledge that our communities, cities, schools, churches, etc are made up of people based primarily on race - don't participate in that anymore and insist on change....let's remove the primary elections because it's rooted in race - if a primary election is held, let the top 2 (or everyone over 30%) run in the general election....stop identify people by their race especially when you are talking to your kids...stop racism when its in your presence...redraw all school districts, all county commission districts, all state rep and senate districts and all congressional district and disregard race in all of them....life is not perfect; therefore, we have to acknowledge that in life a lot of times it has to be life a track event - the starting blocks need to be staggered...
Greg Mack April 30, 2013 at 12:59 PM
thank you...and absolutely! what is always the 1st step? acknowledgement - admitting there is/was a problem - until that's done, there is nothing to resolve/solve - we are all who we are today and where we are in life based on actions/events/decisions made in the past - everyone - a child born via a rape is still a child; however, the issues involved with conception last a lifetime and are dealt with everyday - saying to the woman who was raped that you had nothing to do with it does not help....housing project built years ago are negatively impacting our lives today - small town justice is still negatively impacting our lives today - I learned as a child growing up that you will reap what you sow (what goes around comes around) - so we can ignore doing the right thing if we want, but sooner or later the truth will be revealed and it will come upon us
Racer X April 30, 2013 at 01:39 PM
Greg- Those really are great ideas. To answer the original question though:"is it time for Georgia to acknowledge slavery" I say sure, if it would help. The bigger issue is that slavery was an American problem. It's time for the Federal Government to acknowledge it. Of course, having Obama apologize for slavery may seem a bit ironic, but none of his immediate relatives were ever affected by slavery in America so I think it would be OK (Kenyan father, White mother) The good news is that you would be hard pressed to find any American these days that thinks slavery is OK. If I were Black, I think I would consider myself lucky to have ended up in the US and honor my descendents through whose suffering I am here. Being in Africa these days would be no picnic. In 2010, 68% of the world's AIDS cases where in Sub-Saharan Africa. That's 22.9 million people with Aids with 1.8 million of them dying that year. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epidemiology_of_HIV/AIDS The average income in Sub-Saharan Africa last year was a grand total of $470. or $1.28 per day. http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/NEWS/0,,contentMDK:20179737~pagePK:34370~piPK:42768~theSitePK:4607,00.html Black Americans have come a LONG way, down a hard road, and have a lot to be proud of.

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