Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Exploring the American Minority Experience in Washington, DC: Day Two

In the morning we took the Metro to the National Museum of American History in order to gain perspective on how various minority groups have helped to shape our country's history. We had a few hours to explore the museum, but we focused our attention on three main exhibits: "Righting a Wrong: Japanese Americans and World War II", "American Stories", and "Celebration: Snapshots of African American Communities".

Photo taken in Times Square at the conclusion of WWII. The end of the war sparked the release of thousands of American citizens of Japanese descent from concentration camps in the United States.

Later in the day we went to the National Archives Museum, and we saw the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution. There were several fascinating exhibits in the National Archives Museum, some of which dealt with the various Amendments to the Constitution that have empowered minorities and marginalized groups who were previously disenfranchised by the language of the original Constitution.

Various groups in the United States have fought and continue to fight for the equality and freedom that is ostensibly promised to all Americans in our founding documents.

After the National Archives we ventured into the Sculpture Garden next to the National Gallery of Art to reflect on our day's exploration. We had a discussion about what America means to us and whether or not our nation has achieved the goals of equality and freedom that documents like the Constitution laid out for the country.

Muhammad Ali's boxing gloves on display in the "American Stories" exhibit in the National Museum of American History

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