What Is Juneteenth And Why Should You Care?


Photo Credit: Tacoma Metro

Ok, it is time for some intellectual honesty. I'm likely to get some heat for this article, but sometimes you have to say what needs to be said, to both sides. As President Biden signs a bill making Juneteenth a Nation Holiday, there is a great deal of confusion and even incorrect correlation going on all over about it. So, it is my humble hope that this article will help you to sort through what it is, why you should care, and also to define what it is not.


You see, right now America is embroiled in a battle for the heart and soul of our founding. That all men were created equal, and that all persons should be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. Unfortunately, a celebration long overdue has been drug into this battle by both sides, and that is truly, and repugnantly, a shame.

 
 

So what is Juneteenth? Well, let me first be clear. Juneteenth has nothing, whatsoever, in any way, to do with Critical Race Theory. There is no correlation, there is no causality, one does not flow from the other. Juneteenth is a celebration of the day, June 19th, 1865, when General Gordon Granger read General Order Number Three to the residents of Galveston, Texas, informing them of their freedom and full emancipation.


You see, news did not travel by wire or get displayed on local television sets in the past; and there was no reason for the local news media to announce such emancipation to the slaves in the State of Texas. This led to them being the last remaining slaves in the country as no one had informed them of their freedom or come to enforce the emancipation proclamation. So the Union Army had to send a unit to Texas expressly and specifically for the purpose of freeing the final remaining slaves.


If you can't find a reason/cause to celebrate that event, then I cannot help you. Your hatred is likely far beyond my ability to mend.


Yet, in what may be one of the cruelest twists of fate/ironies, this event, that should have been a national holiday already, was largely unknown and uncelebrated by our nation. This is partially what has led to some confusion on the part of those who didn't know about it as those who are attempting to push CRT have attempted to wrap this date up in their racist ideology.


Juneteenth has NOTHING to do with Critical Race Theory. Juneteenth is a day to celebrate the end of slavery, period.


I am so glad that slavery ended. I cannot express my deepest regret that it happened in my country. I am not guilty of it, nor do I feel personally guilty because of it, but I do acknowledge that it happened, and I am more than happy to celebrate its end. That's not "White Guilt," it is a simple human acknowledgement that those who came before us made a grave and horrific mistake, and that people, actual human beings, suffered.


I don't care if the rest of the world was doing it, and yes, I understand all of the scenarios that brought it into being around the world and in our country.


IT...WAS...WRONG...FULL STOP!


Yet, it is also wrong to attempt to hijack this day, that should be a national celebration of freedom for all, and to turn it into a bludgeon for a racist ideology that wants to assert one race's dominance over another. The CRT idea that there will always be an oppressor, so it might as well be us, is anthemic to America, and to the very idea that Juneteenth stands for.


Freedom for all, equality for all, race doesn't matter, who you are as a person does.


That is the message of Juneteenth. I think it is beautiful.


I will celebrate, and I truly and sincerely hope you will as well.

 

MORE READING:

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/biden-juneteenth-national-holiday-bill-signing

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juneteenth

https://juneteenth.com/

https://www.nytimes.com/article/juneteenth-day-celebration.html

https://nmaahc.si.edu/blog-post/historical-legacy-juneteenth

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Juneteenth

53 views0 comments