A slavery memorial at the state capitol?

So far, there's little resistance among state lawmakers.

click to enlarge The Unsung Founders at UNC Chapel Hill, commemorates the slaves who were forced to build the University. - Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0
Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0
The Unsung Founders at UNC Chapel Hill, commemorates the slaves who were forced to build the University.

As controversy raged in recent months over whether monuments to Confederate officers and soldiers ought to be removed from public property, a less controversial idea surfaced: creating monuments that recognized the scourge of slavery in the U.S. prior to 1865.

In Florida, where places like Hillsborough County were the site of emotional debates decades in the making, a proposed memorial to those forced into slavery is so far gleaning extensive support among lawmakers. 

The News Service of Florida reported that a Florida House of Representatives panel handily passed a bill that ultimately could "lead to the creation of a slavery memorial at the Florida Capitol" in Tallahassee.

Sponsored by State Rep. Kionne McGhee, D-Miami, HB 67 will be up for consideration by lawmakers during the January 2018 legislative session.

The group of lawmakers that gave a nod to the measure on Wednesday was the House Oversight, Transparency & Administration Subcommittee.

If it passes the house and senate in January and is subsequently signed by the governor, it would, according to News Service of Florida, "direct the Department of Management Services to develop a plan for a slavery memorial at the Capitol Complex and to consider recommendations from the Florida Historical Commission."

State Senator Darryl Rouson, a Democrat from St. Petersburg, has filed the bill's senate companion.

The monument, according to NSF, would serve as the inverse of statues honoring the people who caught to people enslaved, and would instead emphasize slavery's brutality and the lives that were stolen and lost because of the slave trade.

“It is the intent of the Legislature to recognize the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the American colonies and to honor the nameless and forgotten men, women, and children who have gone unrecognized for their undeniable and weighty contributions to the United States,” the bill reads.

It's unclear whether the bill will make it to the floor for a full vote in either chamber.

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