Stalling Out On DC’s African-American Museum

Seventy-seven years ago Congress authorized the creation of a new African American Museum in Washington DC. More recently the project has seemed to gain momentum in Congress. But that momentum may be illusory. “The main concern is an age-old one—location, location, location. The commission would like to put a new building on the Washington Mall, near the Capitol. But the Senate bill ignores the commission’s existing recommendation, instead charging the Smithsonian’s Board of Regents with picking a spot. Perhaps more ominously, it grants the board 18 months to make a decision, a lifetime given the ever-changing balance of power in Congress. Meanwhile, the uncertainty puts a crimp in any fundraising plans.”