By Denise Williams
The Florida/Georgia Star
A noose was discovered Wednesday in the history gallery of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in our nation’s capital. It is the second noose discovered on the grounds of the Smithsonian within the last seven days. In the first incident, which occurred May 2nd, an officer conducting a security check of the grounds found a noose hanging from a tree. These acts of aggression against African Americans is not only frustrating but highlighting a need for legislators to address protection for groups who are often targeted in racist attacks. In a Twitter statement, Lonnie Bunch director of the museum stated how these acts are “a painful reminder of the challenges that African-Americans continue to face.”
Since our current presidential administration has taken office, hate crimes across the nation are on the rise. Hate crimes, particularly in Washington, D.C. and New York City, have had substantial increases. Acting Police Chief of the D.C. area Peter Newsham has reported crimes based on bias rose 300 percent and hate crimes related to religion were the second highest increase in 2016.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture opened in September of 2016 in a ceremony led by former President Barack Obama. This federally owned museum, part of the Smithsonian Institution was designed by David Adjaye a British architect from Ghana, Africa. This edifice boasts over 36,000 objects relating to African Americans that touch the subject of community, family, religion, segregation, slavery and performing arts. It chronicles the journey of African people from the Dark Continent to enslavement and freedom in the United States.