Ralph Northam to Speak at Slavery Commemoration Event in Virginia

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Posted: Aug 23, 2019 9:15 AM
Ralph Northam to Speak at Slavery Commemoration Event in Virginia

Source: AP Photo/Steve Helber

This weekend at Fort Monroe in Hampton, Virginia, the 2019 Commemorative Commission will mark the 400th anniversary of the first arrival of captured Africans to the eastern coastal region. The weekend will feature events ranging from black heritage tours to a “day of healing” festival, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal

The mission of the commemoration is "to promote the history of the first Africans in the new world," the website reads.

Yet, there's one snippet at the end of the WSJ report's fourth paragraph worth highlighting.

"Virginia’s Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam, who was embroiled in controversy earlier this year when a racist picture from his 1984 medical-school yearbook was made public, is among the politicians set to speak Saturday."

An interesting choice. Virginians have not forgotten how Northam admitted to having dressed in blackface in a medical yearbook photo in 1984, before he backtracked the next day and claimed he wasn't sure he was in the photo at all. 

He's also rejected demands for his resignation, including from some of his fellow Virginia Democrats. Should he really have a speaking spot on a weekend that is supposed to encourage "healing?"

By the way, he's not the only leading Virginia Democrat to have been mired in a racial controversy. Attorney General Mark Herring admitted to having dressed in blackface in college too.

You can read more about the commemoration's schedule of events here.

This piece will be updated if Townhall receives a response from the 2019 Commemorative Commission about the decision to allow Northam to speak at the ceremony.