Bill Lee Declares August 8 Emancipation Day

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Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee declared Saturday, August 8 as Emancipation Day.

Lee announced this on his Facebook page.

On August 8, 1863, Andrew Johnson, Military Governor of the State of Tennessee and future U.S. President, freed his…

Posted by Gov. Bill Lee on Saturday, August 8, 2020

“On August 8, 1863, Andrew Johnson, Military Governor of the State of Tennessee and future U.S. President, freed his personal slaves in Greeneville, TN,” Lee said.

“This event sparked celebrations of freedom that continue to this day throughout Tennessee. Today, we honor and remember that day that brought freedom from bondage and slavery, because every Tennessean deserves the rights afforded to them by our Constitution.”

Lee’s announcement, though, did not please all of his followers on social media.

Gary Humble was among them.

“Rights ‘given’ and ‘afforded’ to us by the constitution?” Humble asked.

“And you’re supposed to be a conservative? You don’t even understand where your rights come from. This document belongs in Europe, not in America.”

Walden resident Bobby Morrison, meanwhile, said Lee’s proclamation was “a little presumptuous.”

“Our rights are granted by God, not the US or TN constitution,” Morrison wrote.

“Those constitutions protect those rights, not give them.”

CC Carson, meanwhile, told Lee that “no matter what kind of good you try and deliver on this state or this country…trolls will try and tear you down.”

“You’re doing a good job,” Carson said.

“Stand your ground and stay the course.”

According to his biography on The White House’s official website, Johnson a U.S. senator from Tennessee, held his seat in Washington, D.C. even after state officials seceded from the Union. That, the website went on to say, “made him a hero in the North and a traitor in the eyes of most Southerners.”

“In 1862 President Lincoln appointed him Military Governor of Tennessee, and Johnson used the state as a laboratory for reconstruction. In 1864 the Republicans, contending that their National Union Party was for all loyal men, nominated Johnson, a Southerner and a Democrat, for Vice President,” according to The White House.

“After Lincoln’s death, President Johnson proceeded to reconstruct the former Confederate States while Congress was not in session in 1865. He pardoned all who would take an oath of allegiance, but required leaders and men of wealth to obtain special Presidential pardons.”

The House of Representatives later impeached Johnson, and U.S. senators acquitted him by one vote.

“In 1875, Tennessee returned Johnson to the Senate,” according to The White House.

“He died a few months later.”

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]






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8 Thoughts to “Bill Lee Declares August 8 Emancipation Day”

  1. LB

    I think the question is…now what? Are we as a state going to continue to live under the spider web of fear and trauma or are we going to open up for business and prosper?

  2. Bill

    William, Nice book about your first car buying experience but fell asleep half way through. Progressive/communist propaganda does that to a person.

  3. John

    From the moment I heard Lee’s campaign ad stating, “I’m a conservative”, I knew he was a fraud. Tried to convince my conservative friends to not vote for this guy in the primary. None of them would listen.

    When is the tyranny going to end? There’s only so much the people can take.

  4. 83ragtop50

    When I saw this article’s headline I threw my mask in the trash because I thought that Mr. Lee had come to his senses and rescinded his unlawful declaration requiring state citizens to wear masks. But, boy was I wrong. He is still out of touch with reality. Pandering to the loudest few.

  5. William Delzell

    In an IDEAL society, we would not have to have Covid restrictions (or Covid itself). But this is the REAL world; Covid still poses a threat to the public safety. We have to put safety first before we go willy-nilly to reopen. Of course, I think it is inconvenient for me to wear a mask as it sometimes can be uncomfortable, but I still wear it to protect both myself and those with whom I come in contact. It is also inconvenient for me to keep my social distance all the time without being able to be physically intimate with my loved ones, but I still keep my distance because I CARE about others. I have to share my dwelling place with two others and we have to respect each other’s space and welfare, especially with this epidemic. I have to respect my colleagues at the office to insure that none of us come down with Covid. Yes, it is inconvenient; but life is often inconvenient. You conservatives used to accuse us progressives as being spoiled and unwilling to do our part; but now the shoe is on the other foot when I hear irresponsible white people of both genders who not only REFUSE to wear their masks or to keep their social distance, but to brandish LOADED weapons that could accidentally go off and kill innocent bystanders. Is this what you conservatives refer to as family values? It’s not my definition of family values.

    I do think, however, that we could ease some restrictions gradually without endangering the public welfare. For example, banks could have LIMITED lobby hours for the benefit of the many people who do not own a car. The drive-in parts of banks do not allow pedestrians or bike-users to access the drive-in booths. That is a form of class discrimination (as well as de facto race discrimination) as fewer nonwhites can afford a car than whites can. Luckily, I have a car so that the drive-in/closed lobby restrictions did not have as adverse impact on me as it would have had I not had a car. I could not afford my first car until I completed Graduate School at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville almost forty years ago. I was 29 when I got my first car! Despite that, I continue to use public transit whenever I can so as to prevent myself from becoming TOTALLY dependant on a single-occupancy vehicle. Having a car is not cheap. Getting a big-ticket item like an automobile taught me a hard bitter lesson on managing one’s finances. Aside from the purchase price even for a GOOD used car, one has to take Tennessee’s unusually high sales tax into account; the insurance premiums to insure maximal coverage for me and my passengers; the cost of registration; the cost of a title; repairs/maintenance; wheel (excise) taxes; inspections; and parking; etc. Cars eat a huge chunk out of one’s income just to keep up on insurance payments that I could have otherwise used for pleasure things like economic world travel to international places in an environmentally conscious manner. Cars can devour just as much as rent/utilities and medical care particularly during the first installment.

    You conservatives for your own sake and for the sake of everybody else on our planet need to do your part to help flatten the curb. We do that by practicing personal safety habits and by teaching our children to do likewise.

    1. Dave

      William, how typical of a progressive liberal to divide up Americans by race, class, etc. You liberals are all about division but never have any real solutions, just failed policies. Now ya’ll say let’s try radical socialism. Why don’t you all just move to Venezuela & try it for yourselves? I’ll gladly chip on on the tickets as long as you sign a contact not to come back to the U.S.

  6. Ralph

    To the Governor: Virtue signaling does not equate to virtue, just the opposite.

    This is just a display of mundane obsequiousness to distract from the flawed policies and fear mongering that is destroying the lives, the happiness and the health of hundreds of thousands of citizens across the state. Those he swore to serve. He is doing so contrary to the truth, in both the practical sense ( and in the spiritual, John 8:44.

    Why? Money and drunk with power in my opinion. So is he any less craven in that regard than other state Governors, who continue to propagate irrational fear to the detriment of their citizens, and our society at large? Not in the least.

    Governor, if you want to celebrate “emancipation”, it is better to begin by rescinding your absurd state of emergency, which has no basis in reality….none.

    Governor, you are not acting in manner worthy of the office, nor that of a Christian. Either get a grip on reality or think seriously about stepping aside aside for someone who will. If not for the citizens of the state, then for your soul.

    1. 83ragtop50

      Ralph – Well said.