Henry Clay’s unwavering dedication to and practice of open, honest dialogue, and civil engagement underpins the Center’s efforts to support our ongoing national development by drawing lessons from the full spectrum of our namesake’s legacy.
In that spirit, the Henry Clay Center unequivocally condemns Clay’s participation in and broader facilitation of the institution of slavery. Furthermore, we condemn his personal view that Native Americans are lesser beings.
We believe that his contradictory positions – privately denouncing slavery, yet openly enslaving people, and privately denigrating Native Americans, yet openly championing their rights – provide useful allegories for examining and ultimately remedying the inherent contradictions in the foundation of this country.
Have questions around Henry Clay’s legacy? Interested in our plan to foster diversity and a bright future for our future leaders? Please contact us and Henry Clay Center will share exciting plans to grow awareness on this important matter.