A three-fifth compromise was to end slavery

Nashville, Tennessee (AP) — Republicans in Tennessee erroneously declared and educated on Tuesday that an 18th-century policy designating slaves as three-fifths was adopted “to end slavery.” Commented in a discussion on whether to limit the number of people. While teaching about systematic racism in the United States.

In a lengthy Republican-controlled housefloor debate, some black lawmakers expressed concern about the impact of the bill on how certain subjects were taught in school, especially three-fifths. Emphasized compromise. This policy was created during the 1787 US Constitutional Convention, and three-fifths of the state’s slave population could be counted in its total population when allocating taxes and state representatives in Congress. It was classified as having.

Historians strongly agree that the compromise has given enslaved nations excessive power over the president’s choices and the decisions of the Continental Congress. Its influence eventually diminished when the population of the northern states began to grow rapidly.

White Congressman Justin Rafati stood up and talked long about what he saw as a compromise. At some point, he asked a colleague to write down their best guess on paper for reasons that led to the policy.

“By limiting the number of people in the count, we specifically limited the number of representatives available in slavery states and did so with the aim of ending slavery,” said Rafati of Knoxville. It was. .. Long before the Civil War. “

None of the other members of the Chamber of Commerce directly challenged Rafferty’s false allegations, but some applauded when he finished speaking.

In a later statement, Rafferty’s comments were awkward, said Democratic Memphis member Antonio Parkinson, chairman of the General Assembly’s Black Presidium.

“Person. Rafferty’s statement on how a three-fifth compromise was made to end slavery was alarming, but the real insult was that Republicans blamed his diabetes. It was when I applauded for him when I was done, “he said.

Parkinson added that racial conversations in the Tennessee Parliament have always been “very unpleasant.”

A spokesperson for the House Republican Caucus did not immediately email a question about Rafferty’s comments.

The House overwhelmingly approved the bill on Tuesday, but the Republican-controlled Senate refused to accept the bill a few hours later. Its fate remains unknown on the final day of the legislative assembly.

Rafferty’s comments reflected last month’s sentiment expressed by Colorado Republican Ron Hanks last month, who said the three-fifth compromise “did not affect anyone’s humanity.” It was. In 2019, Klamath Falls Republican Oregon State Senator Dennis Linsikam argued that it was not racist to designate slaves as three-fifths of racists.

The discussion on Tuesday also comes when a few states are considering restrictions on how schools and state agencies can talk about race and racism.

In Oklahoma, lawmakers have enacted legislation banning so-called “critical racial theory.” This includes prohibiting teaching that individuals, whether conscious or unconscious, are inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, depending on race or gender. The bill is currently calling on Republican Governor Kevin Stitt to consider it. In the meantime, more and more organizations have organized to encourage Stitt to reject the bill.

Republican Governor Brad Little of Idaho approved a similar proposal last week, arguing that schools and colleges need to be prevented from “educating” students.

On the other hand, the recently enacted version of Arkansas does not apply to schools and colleges from kindergarten to high school, but instead focuses primarily on employee training.

Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson allowed the bill to become a bill without his signature on Monday. The governor has traditionally taken to express dissatisfaction without vetoing the bill.

Parliamentarians behind Arkansas’ actions said it was specifically aimed at preventing the “divided” concept taught to state employees by third-party groups.

Elsewhere in the country, conservative lawmakers say they are afraid that white students are taught to be ashamed of past mistakes made by previous generations, such as slavery.

However, opponents argue that such measures are not enforceable and may violate freedom of speech.

“We are going to be involved in a major infringement in the First Amendment,” Arkansas Democratic Senator Linda Chesterfield said in a debate last month.

And in New Hampshire, it remains unclear whether a similar bill will win after several participants in budget hearings have urged lawmakers to abandon it.

Matthew Houde of Dartmouth Hitchcock, one of the state’s largest employers, said the bill would undermine the health care system’s efforts to promote “diversity, fairness, inclusion and attribution.”


Andrew DeMillo, Associated Press writer in Little Rock, Arkansas; Sean Murphy in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Holly Ramer of Concord, New Hampshire and Keith Ridler of Boise, Idaho contributed to this report.


The spelling of Matthew Houde’s surname has been corrected in the last paragraph.

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