VA Gov. McDonnell Decides Slavery is ‘Significant’ After All
April 8, 2010
(ChattahBox)—-Amid growing controversy for issuing a state proclamation honoring the Confederacy, without mention of slavery, Republican Gov. of Virginia, Bob McDonnell has finally issued an apology for his “major omission,” calling it “a mistake.” Earlier in the week, McDonnell angered Civil Rights leaders by saying that slavery was not “significant” enough to be included in his proclamation declaring April as Confederate History Month.
Besides issuing an apology for his decision to exclude slavery from his Confederacy declaration, McDonnell will also rewrite the original proclamation to include a passage about the evils of slavery.
McDonnell’s official statement reads in part:
“The proclamation issued by this Office designating April as Confederate History Month contained a major omission. The failure to include any reference to slavery was a mistake, and for that I apologize to any fellow Virginian who has been offended or disappointed. The abomination of slavery divided our nation, deprived people of their God-given inalienable rights, and led to the Civil War. Slavery was an evil, vicious and inhumane practice which degraded human beings to property, and it has left a stain on the soul of this state and nation.”
And the following language will be added to the proclamation:
“WHEREAS, it is important for all Virginians to understand that the institution of slavery led to this war and was an evil and inhumane practice that deprived people of their God-given inalienable rights and all Virginians are thankful for its permanent eradication from our borders, and the study of this time period should reflect upon and learn from this painful part of our history…..”
Former Virginia Gov. Kaine, joining other leaders, condemned McDonnell’s Confederacy proclamation on Wednesday. “Governor McDonnell’s decision to designate April as Confederate History Month without condemning, or even acknowledging, the pernicious stain of slavery or its role in the war disregards history, is insensitive to the extraordinary efforts of Americans to eliminate slavery and bind the nation’s wounds, and offends millions of Americans of all races and in all parts of our nation,” Kaine said.
Although done under pressure and negative media attention, McDonnell finally did the right thing.