- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Republicans in the House and Senate introduced resolutions on Monday denouncing the Smithsonian for omitting Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas from the recently opened National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The Senate resolution was introduced by John Cornyn and Ted Cruz of Texas, Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee of Utah, Charles Grassley of Iowa and Tim Scott of South Carolina.

Mr. Cornyn said Justice Thomas’s contributions to constitutional jurisprudence are “nothing short of remarkable,” making his omissions from the museum all the more “troubling.”

“Justice Thomas’s humble beginnings, brilliant mind, and indelible contributions to American jurisprudence are nothing short of remarkable,” Mr. Cornyn said in a statement. “His omission from the National Museum of African American History and Culture is troubling and reflects a disregard for the historical significance of his service to our country. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate and the Smithsonian to hopefully correct this.”

A corresponding House version was introduced by Georgia Rep. Earl Carter and Texas Rep. Pete Sessions, and is co-sponsored by dozens of other Republicans.

Mr. Carter called Justice Thomas’s omission from the museum a “tragedy.”

“Justice Thomas’s contributions to America, his unique life story, and strongly held convictions should be shared and celebrated and I will not give up until the Smithsonian properly recognizes and shares this important part of history,” he said in a statement.

The omission comes on the 25-year anniversary of Justice Thomas’s appointment to the Supreme Court. He is the second black man ever to serve on the nation’s highest court.

After a backlash over the slight ensued, the Smithsonian said it simply “cannot tell every story” about the black experience in America.

But the museum found time to mention Justice Thomas in one particular context.

“In 1991, Anita Hill charged Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas with sexual harassment,” one of the few mentions of Justice Thomas in the museum reads.

“Anita Hill accused a nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, Clarence Thomas, of sexual harassment,” another reads.

“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,” Smithsonian chief spokesperson Linda St. Thomas said at the time. “However, we cannot tell every story in our inaugural exhibitions.”


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