“We appreciate the gestures of a proposed memorial to our enslaved ancestors on Georgetown’s campus and President John DeGioia’s visits with some descendants, but recommendations developed without the meaningful participation of descendants can only be seen as preliminary,” Sandra Green Thomas, a slave descendant said.
The descendants of the slaves sold by Georgetown University to rescue their drowning finances have come out to say that they are not pleased with a mere apology and an admission preference.
According to the Washington Post, the descendants have petitioned Georgetown and Maryland Jesuits to create a $1 billion benevolent foundation with the initial funds they have been able to contribute.
The slave descendants, who number about 600, said that they do not accept the offer by the university because they were never consulted. The university created a committee to decide on the kind of settlement to give to the slave descendants but never included any of them in that discussion.
Sandra Green Thomas, a slave descendant said, “We appreciate the gestures of a proposed memorial to our enslaved ancestors on Georgetown’s campus and President John DeGioia’s visits with some descendants, but recommendations developed without the meaningful participation of descendants can only be seen as preliminary.”
The slaves’ descendants also stated that they have raised an amount of $115,000; which is the current equivalent of the price at which the slaves were sold by the university. They said that the money will be used as base money to start the charitable foundation.
The organizer of the slave descendants, Joseph Stewart stated that “The foundation is our vision of an opportunity for us to have a partnership with Georgetown University that can take the history that we all now know about and turn it into a greater common good for Georgetown, the Jesuits, the Catholic Church, and humans overall.”
He also added that the foundation isn’t about them but it is to be used to support the less privileged in the community.
Georgetown University to give preferential admission to slave descendants to atone for past. https://t.co/FgQt0rDLhh #highered
— Marisol Flores (@marimflor) September 1, 2016
This is a very thoughtful initiative by the slave descendants. Their interest isn’t in taking the money for themselves but to create a foundation which they themselves have already raised money for. We stand in solidarity with the slave descendants, a mere apology and admission preference without scholarship isn’t going to help. The university ought to pay the money for the use of the foundation.
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