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The system of slavery, the resolution states, “and the visceral racism against people of African descent upon which it depended became enmeshed in the social fabric of the United States,” and whereas slavery was abolished in 1865 with the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, “Jim Crow” would later create separate “and unequal societies for whites and African-Americans.”

The resolution, therefore, “apologizes to African-Americans on behalf of the people of the United States for the wrongs committed against them and their ancestors who suffered under slavery and Jim Crow laws.”

On July 8, 2003, during a trip to Goree Island, Senegal, a former slave port, President Bush acknowledged that slavery was “one of the greatest crimes of history.”


When it comes to securing (or trying to secure) our nation’s borders, what a difference a century makes.

As pointed out by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, Arizona Democrat, when the United States Border Patrol was established 85 years ago, its only posts were in Detroit and in El Paso, Texas.

“The first agents were issued a badge and a revolver, but they had to provide their own horses and saddles,” she noted. “Fortunately, the federal government paid for the feed.”

The congresswoman’s 8th Congressional District in southeastern Arizona is home to the Border Patrol’s Tucson sector, which represents a mere 13 percent (114 miles) of the U.S. border with Mexico, yet accounts for close to 50 percent of the agency’s apprehensions and drug seizures.


Yes, that is Raul Castro the U.S. Congress is saluting, but not Cuban President Raul Castro, younger brother of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

Rather, tributes are for Arizona’s first Hispanic governor, whom President Lyndon Johnson appointed U.S. ambassador to El Salvador in 1964. He went on to become ambassador to Bolivia before winning his 1974 campaign to become Arizona governor.

As history would have it, Mr. Castro never completed his gubernatorial term. President Jimmy Carter asked him to serve as ambassador to Argentina, and he accepted. He’s now retired and living, where else, in Arizona.

• John McCaslin can be reached at 202/636-3284 or