Emancipation

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Img11963.jpg

Emancipation

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“Emancipation” painted on the back drop of the Emancipation Proclamation symbolizes the struggle to end slavery and the struggle for civil rights beginning with the civil war. The child picking cotton is symbolic of the immorality of slavery and the promise of a better future free of the scourge of slavery. The cotton plant symbolizes the South’s reliance on king cotton, the driving economic engine feeding the demand for a large and cheap workforce. The cotton bag represents the burden of slavery and the legacy of 100 years of chattel slavery. The image of the child looking out at the viewer invites us to engage in the continuing struggle to expand this unfulfilled promise, to truly be a part of the American fabric. The torn fabric invites us to figuratively strive to mend the fabric of American society. The child's out-stretched hand and open palm represent our willingness to reach for a better future and accept the responsibilities of freedom. The child's eyes beg us for action, and a better future. This is a call for a Second Emancipation Proclamation that captures the political and moral leadership of our time, to address the issues of discrimination, police violence, the whole sale incarceration of our youth and the continuing economic inequality of this decade.