Guam Legislature Holds Historic Hearing Condemning The Insular Cases

This week the Guam Legislature held an historic public hearing in support of a House Resolution 279 condemning the Insular Cases, a series of Plessy-era Supreme Court decisions rooted in racial animus that established an unprecedented colonial framework for inhabitants of Guam and other U.S. territories. The hearing brought together an impressive array of current and former elected officials, national and international legal experts, and community activists for a wide-ranging conversation on the importance of finally turning the page on the Insular Cases as a way to help bring an end to Guam’s colonial status. The hearing focused on the Guam Legislature’s Resolution 56-36, introduced by Guam’s Vice Speaker Tina Muña Barnes and a bipartisan group of five other Senators. 

Neil Weare, President and Founder of Equally American, was one of the experts invited to testify. “We appreciate Vice Speaker Muña Barnes efforts to make Guam a leader in pushing back against the Insular Cases,” Weare said. “The Guam Legislature’s actions here should serve as a model for other territorial and even state legislatures to condemn the Insular Cases and the ongoing second-class treatment faced by the 3.5 million residents of U.S. territories - 98% of whom are racial or ethnic minorities,” Weare added. 

Governor Lourdes “Lou” Leon Guerrero and Northern Mariana Islands Senate President Jude U. Hofschneider submitted written testimony in support of the resolutions that was read into the record.

The Guam Legislature’s public hearing on Resolution 56-36  may be viewed in its entirety online. Equally American President Neil Weare’s full written testimony is available here.

The House Natural Resources Committee will be holding its own hearing on H.Res. 279 next week. Details will be available on the Committee’s website.

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published this page in Equally American Blog 2021-05-06 14:18:34 -0400