Rep. Al Green (D-TX) speaking at George Floyd’s funeral on Tuesday called for the federal government to create a Department of Reconciliation, saying it’s time for the United States “to seek reconciliation for black people.”
“The Congressional Black Caucus is making a difference, but I believe there’s one more thing that we ought to do to make a difference. We have got to have reconciliation,” Green told the several hundred mourners at the Fountain of Praise Church in Houston. “This country has not reconciled its differences with us. We survived slavery, but we didn’t reconcile. We survived segregation, but we didn’t reconcile. We’re suffering discrimination because we didn’t reconcile.”
He added, “It’s time for a Department of Reconciliation in the highest land, the highest office. It’s time to have someone who’s going to make it his or her business to seek reconciliation for black people in the United States of America every day of his life. That’s what it is is all about. It’s time for us to reconcile. We need a Department of Reconciliation.”
Last week, the Texas Democrat stated in a statement that his office has filed a resolution “for the establishment of a Cabinet-level Department of Reconciliation charged with eliminating racism and invidious discrimination.” He stated Floyd’s death at the hands of a Minneapolis police officers should be honored “at the national level” with a federal effort to achieve racial reconciliation.
“We ought to have a secretary of reconciliation who reports directly to the president of the United States, whose job it will be to eliminate racism and discrimination in all of its forms,” Green said during an interview with MSNBC’s Craig Melvin before Floyd’s funeral.
Green is among the hundred Democratic lawmakers who have sponsored a legislation to develop reparation proposals for African Americans. According to the bill summary, the commission will “examine slavery and discrimination in the colonies and the United States from 1619 to the present and recommend appropriate remedies.” It was introduced last year in January and the last action was in June 2019 where a subcommittee hearing was held.