Senator Tim Scott Asks Smithsonian to Include Clarence Thomas in Exhibition


U.S. Sen. Tim Scott praised the National Museum of African American History and Culture when it first opened in the fall.

But the South Carolina Republican is now saying curators of the museum, an affiliate of Smithsonian Institution, neglected to include an exhibit on a crucial figure: Clarence Thomas, the second black Supreme Court justice to sit on the highest bench in the land.

“I sincerely hope that a museum that has done so much right in telling the history of African Americans will not deny generations of Americans the privilege of experiencing Justice Thomas’s incredible and inspirational story,” Scott wrote in a letter to Smithsonian Director David Skorton, Under Secretary for Smithsonian Museums and Research Richard Kurin and NMAAHC Director Lonnie Bunch.

Scott, one of the two current black members of the Senate, made his plea both practical and personal.

“While Justice Thomas and I do not share the same keen mastery of constitutional law, I can identify to some degree, with some of the inherent stereotypes and personal obstacles that Justice Thomas overcame to reach the pinnacle of his profession,” Scott wrote.

“I can attest that, similar to Justice Thomas, as an African American man growing up in abject poverty of the Deep South, without the full arsenal of a nuclear family, and having struggled early on in school, options for my success seemed limited and role models or mentors were hard to find.”

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Source: Post and Courier | Emma Dumain