Black History: Special Delivery

Welcome To The Black Mail Blog and Podcast! At Black Mail, we bring you, Black History: Special Delivery.

Our topic today is the 1962 Second Emancipation Proclamation.

In 1962 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and other civil rights leaders urged President Kennedy to issue a Second Emancipation Proclamation Order.  The first Emancipation Proclamation was issued on January 1, 1863, to free the enslaved.  This second proclamation was being prompted as a call to action for ending racial segregation. 

 King announced the idea in a New York City press conference in 1961.  At the press conference, King reminded the crowd of President Lincoln’s statement that the United States could not exist being “half-slave and half-free.”  Bringing the issue forward to the present-day, King asserted that the Kennedy administration should recognize that the nation cannot continue being half segregated. and half segregation free. 

King first introduced the idea to President Kennedy, asking him for a proclamation outlawing segregation.  Kennedy agreed to take it under consideration and asked King to draft a recommendation.  King sent the proposal two months later. The document challenged President Kennedy to use his executive powers to end all forms of racial discrimination.  Despite requesting the recommendation, Kennedy did not issue a second Emancipation Proclamation.  On November 20, 1962, Kennedy issued, Executive Order 11063, outlawing racial discrimination in federally subsidized housing or related facilities.  Kennedy also introduced an omnibus civil rights bill to congress following a civil rights address on June 11, 1963.  The recommendations of the Second Emancipation were not fulfilled until the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act which outlawed segregation.