In the city council chambers, the silly season never ends. Next month the Contracts Committee is expected to begin debate on the Slavery Disclosure bill, which would require contractors hoping to do business with the city to disclose whether their companies ever benefited from slavery.
The bill was introduced by Council Deputy Majority Leader Bill Perkins (D-Harlem), clearly another person with too much time on his hands. Thirteen other council members have reportedly signed on to the bill. Intro. 314 would require businesses to disclose whether they ever had any connection to the slave trade. Perkins has promised that no harm will come to these companies. Yea, sure.
We congratulate Councilman Peter Vallone, Jr. (D-Astoria) for having the courage to say that this bill is ridiculous. He notes that the bill would put the Council in the position of doing research for lawyers hoping to sue companies historically tied to slavery and that it would hold stockholders of companies today accountable for something that happened 150 years ago.
To this we add that the bill is foolish and divisive and serves as a distraction at a time when the mayor and the Council must work together to rescue the city from the current economic crisis. We cant think of a worse moment to get involved in such nonsense.
©2003 Community News Group
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