Home Black History $540 Million African American Museum: Is Investing In Our Past Worth It?
$540 Million African American Museum: Is Investing In Our Past Worth It?

$540 Million African American Museum: Is Investing In Our Past Worth It?

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By: Leticia Latrice

National Museum of African American History and Culture dedicated to the African American Experience was created. Fifteen years ago the museum was non-existent. It took a rigorous battle with congress for almost 20 years to get them to approve the museum. Finally President Bush  authorized the creation of the museum in 2003. Once the director Lonnie G. Bunch III got the approval he had to figure out how the museum would be built. He had no land, no building or no money to begin the project. Luckily shortly after President Obama was elected into office and began to rally support for the building of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

A lot of political moves were made to make sure the museum could be successful. Colin Powell and Laura Bush were appointed to the board of directors to secure bi-partisan support. There was a controversial exhibit of Thomas Jefferson standing in front of a wall that has a list of 612 slaves that he owned. The goal of the museum was to create critical conversations of difficult topics involving America’s history of slavery.

The amount of money that the museum needed to be built was astronomical. Bunch began fundraising to finance the project. Kenneth Chenault the chief executive of American Express managed the campaign. The support of the African American community was amazing. Michael Jordan donated $5 million dollars and Oprah Winfrey donated $12 million dollars. Alfred Street Baptist Church, in Alexandria, VA donated $1 million dollars on their own and their congregation collectively donated 4 million dollars. Many other African Americans in the community gave the best they could with tons of $1,000 donations. After it was all said and done the National Museum of African American History and Culture is now a Smithsonian Institution and raised $540 million dollars to construct and maintain the phenomenal building in Washington D.C. which is scheduled to open September 24th 2016.

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The building resembles a three-tier crown and has exhibits that show the journey of African-American’s in the Middle Passage of slavery, the achievements of African American heroes and leaders and the modern day complexities of black life in this country. Thankfully Bunch fought and sacrificed to have African American history placed into a museum that your children’s children can go and experience. Always remember African’s were not slaves they were ENSLAVED and taken by force from their home in Africa.

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If the African American community was able to raise $540 million for the museum to be built, do you think that amount of money can be raised to economically support the black community?

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Comment(12)

  1. sounds like so more Bullshit to me if the esteemed Anthropologist can go back millions of years an tell you every thing about Dinosaurs seems to me it should be a walk in the park to explain the truth about so called Blacks,coloreds, afro=americans, niggers an whatever word they use to describe us,the real truth about our true Nationality prior to slavery.think about it we are the only people on this planet without a Land to call our own. oh Blackland Niggerland Coloredland or Afroland dam thats a Continent .Now they will give some coon Authority to open a Museum to further confuse yall dumb asses. Peace Love Truth Freedom Justice.

  2. I am surprised at the lack of depth in the history of the creation of the museum. It took over 100 years for this project to come to fruition. why was there no mention of the senators and congressmen (Strom Thurman was a leader) that continually blocked legislation for the creation of this wonderful project?

  3. I think the museum is very important for our heritage to have a home somewhere finally. But if you can raise that kind of money for a building, what’s wrong with taking that same money and find ways to help Black Americans be prosperous and self sufficient. We seem to still be confused about how to support one another. We just need a town that nobody cares about or wants and start from there. If you build it I’m coming, I’ll help, something. It’s time for us to get back on our side of the tracks and stop making it a priority to fit in.

    1. approx. 300,000,000 population In usa approx. 12% black approx. 36,000,000 a/a. invest $1 from each per year = $36,000,000 per year $10 dollars per year = $360,000,000 per year and so forth. see how simple it is my people. strength in numbers this is black wall street. IT’S THE ECONOMY STUPID!!!!

  4. We can still build a second Black Wall Street and this Museum can be of great help in helping do just that. We will now know more of our history then we ever knew and it will let us as a people know we can do anything if we come together and do,it. I. A m on board are you?

  5. Yes the expense was great , however the long term effects on our children would be boundless. Scores of children from all grade levels would explore our culture. Imagine our young minds not having to depend on slanted text books or just what is shown on and in the media.

  6. Consider that the next time you hear a black child say hip hop is the only true black culture or MLK freed the slaves. Or your child can’t name any black person who is not an entertainer. Don’t worry more white folks will vist it anyway since they seem to have a greater interest in our culture than many of use have.

  7. Former President Thomas Jefferson owned over six hundred slaves. One of those slaves was a under age black girl name Sally Hemmings. The two hollywood movies about Sally Hemmings did not mention this. If Thomas Jefferson owned that many slaves, I wonder how many slaves George Washington and John Adams owned?

  8. In my opinion, $540 million dollars (Over half a billion dollars) should have been used to start a second Black Wall Street. Black history museums are good, but black men and women need jobs! With that type of money, we could start a tv and movie distribution corporation, our own television news broadcast station, a clothing and shoe manufacturing corporation you name it.

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