Juneteenth is a day to recognize and commemorate the end of American slavery. Juenteenth a combination of June 19th was born out of the abolition of slavery in Texas in 1865 and is currently a state holiday in 36 states. Although the Emancipation Proclamation freeing American slaves went into force January 1, 1863. Texas as part of the confederacy did not recognize the emancipation. The slaves did not become free in Texas until Union soldiers took and occupied Galveston in June 18th and 19th, 1865. Juneteenth today is celebrated in African American throughout African American communities from organized church and community events to family gatherings.
Juneteenth is an opportunity to reflect upon the direction of a nation whose history was born from the blood stains of Native American atrocities and the holocaust of slavery. Clearly progress has been made especially in the last 50 years but the virus of racism remains. Those who thought the election of a Black President would be the end of the race question have been quickly silenced by the rise of the right in America including some who challenge the premise of equality included in the Civil Rights Act which ended racial segregation. Those who believe the President to be some sort of black nationalist or wasn’t born in the United States, who doesn’t like white people. Insane.
So there is work to be done. Bob Marley said it best:
Until the philosophy which hold one race superior
Everywhere is war