- The Washington Times - Monday, December 19, 2016

Sen. Ted Cruz has called on the Smithsonian Institution to recognize Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas‘ “incredible contributions to the country,” saying he was “deeply disturbed” to learn that the black conservative does not have a prominent display at the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Mr. Cruz wrote a letter to Smithsonian leaders on Monday, saying they “made a mistake by omitting the enormous legacy and impact” of Justice Thomas from the recently opened museum in northwest Washington.

“I became deeply disturbed upon learning that Justice Thomas’s moving story and incredible contributions to the country are not even mentioned, much less discussed in detail in the museum,” the Texas Republican wrote. “Making matters worse, the only reference to Justice Thomas is in regard to a single individual’s controversial accusation against him at his Senate confirmation hearing twenty-five years ago.”

Mr. Cruz was referring to Anita Hill, a former employee of Justice Thomas who famously accused him of sexually harassing her during testimony at his confirmation hearings in 1991.

“I am concerned that millions of Americans, of all ages, races, religions, and walks of life, one passing through this museum, will be subjected to a singular and distorted view of Justice Thomas, an African-American who survived segregation, defeated discrimination, and ascended all the way to the Supreme Court,” Mr. Cruz wrote.

The senator said he wasn’t interested in rewriting history.

“To be clear, I am not petitioning for a partisan hagiography of Justice Thomas, nor am I asking that everything critical of him be excluded,” he wrote. “I am simply requesting that a fair and accurate portrayal of his powerful story be included, for the great benefit of millions of future museum-goers.”

Mr. Cruz and several other Republican senators introduced a resolution earlier this month asking the Smithsonian Institution to recognize the “historical importance” of Justice Thomas.

A Smithsonian official addressed the controversial omission in October, saying the museum can’t be expected to tell “every story” in its inaugural exhibitions.

“There are many compelling personal stories about African Americans who have become successful in various fields, and, obviously, Associate Justice Thomas is one of them,” Linda St. Thomas, chief spokesperson for the Smithsonian, told CNS News at the time. “We will continue to collect and interpret the breadth of the African American experience.”


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