New Jersey Lawmakers May Apologize for Slavery
TRENTON, N.J. — New Jersey could become the first Northern state to apologize for slavery under a measure due for a legislative committee hearing this week.
"This is not too much to ask of the state of New Jersey," said Assemblyman William Payne, sponsor of the proposal. "All that is being requested of New Jersey is to say three simple words: 'We are sorry.'"
Legislators in Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia have issued formal apologies for slavery.
"If former Confederate states can take action like this, why can't a Northeast state like New Jersey?" asked Payne, a Democrat.
According to the proposal, New Jersey had one of the largest slave populations in the Northern colonies and was the last state in the Northeast to formally abolish slavery, not doing so until 1846. The state didn't ratify the constitutional amendment prohibiting slavery until January 1866, weeks after it became law, having rejected ratification in 1865.
Jeff L. Underwood
Company C. Chesapeake Volunteer Guard
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last. - Winston Churchill