Rep. Al Green and Sen. Elizabeth Warren have again introduced a resolution to designate Aug. 20 as Slavery Remembrance Day.
The Democratic lawmakers reintroduced the legislation Wednesday, months after Green originally brought the measure to the House floor in July.
Green said such an annual day of recognition is necessary in order to teach people to “denounce oppression while simultaneously exemplifying why it should be denounced.”
“The legacy of slavery, our nation’s seminal sin, continues casting its shadow across our nation today,” the Texas congressman said. “It fuels invidious discrimination even in the most unsuspecting of places and perpetuates attempts at sanitizing oppressive history in our classrooms.
“Currently, we have remembrance days for the Holocaust, Pearl Harbor, and 9/11,” he said. “Enshrining such events not only in our collective memories, but also among our official, collective observances, serves to remind us of atrocities that have occurred and must never be repeated. As an immoral institution, slavery is no exception.”
Warren concurred that the horrors of slavery “can never be forgotten.”
“We must acknowledge the dangers and dehumanization that enslaved people faced, and honor those who led the long fight for abolition and justice,” the Massachusetts senator said. “Today, the legacy of slavery still has pervasive impacts on the descendants of enslaved individuals in institutionalized racism, police brutality, mass incarceration, and in other forms. Representative Al Green and I are introducing this legislation to establish August 20 as Slavery Remembrance Day — an important step to ensure we never forget this stain on our country’s history.”