A bill to study the potential creation of a national museum of Asian Pacific American history has been passed unanimously in the Senate, reports CNN. The bill by Rep Grace Meng has already been passed by the House, and now awaits President Biden’s signature.
The bill will appoint an eight-person commission drawing input from both the House and Senate.
Responsibilities of the commission include a fundraising plan and acquiring acquisitions for the museum, according to The Art Newspaper. The commission’s study will follow an 18-month timeline.
“The commission will be composed of individuals with expertise in the research, study and promotion of Asian American Pacific Islander history,” Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii said. “This commission will submit a report to Congress, at which point, we should act.”
Hirono also stated that the museum will be important in dismantling the perpetual foreigner stereotype Asian and Pacific Americans are often viewed under.
“[Asian and Pacific Americans] have made significant contributions to American life, but … have largely been excluded or erased from American history,” Hirono said. “If not invisible, AAPI groups are often pejoratively depicted as foreigners: always the other, instead of people who have lived in and positively contributed to this country for generations.”
Meanwhile, Meng stated that she hopes the museum will represent a physical space to “commemorate and share our story with future generations.”
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