New Civil Rights Museum Also Explores Human Rights

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Also featured: a who’s who of human rights activists — Nelson Mandela, Vaclav Havel, Eleanor Roosevelt, Mahatma Gandhi — along with a lineup of villains — Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin and Pol Pot.

Another exhibit explores the ethical footprint of consumer products. It explains that workers who harvest cut flowers are sometimes exposed to dangerous pesticides; that cellphones contain minerals that are sometimes at the root of violent conflicts; and that products like cocoa and soccer balls are sometimes made by child laborers in oppressive conditions.

Shipman said the museum won’t shy away from controversial topics but also is not going to pick sides.

“We want to be a place to have a very tough conversation in a civil way,” he said.

The building symbolizes its theme. Curved exterior walls resemble hands coming together. The green grass roof evokes parks and squares where protests often occur. Exterior panels in neutral shades of tan and brown fit together, representing individual pieces comprising a whole. Walls of windows at each end signify openness to the outside.

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(Photo Source: AP)

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