Independence Day – Juneteenth

I am pretty excited to talk about this today because I feel it’s something that people all across the U.S. can get behind. Americans of all ethnicities can celebrate the end of slavery.

Quick back story:

July 4th, 1776 was the day the Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies were no longer subject (and subordinate) to the monarch of Britain, King George III, and were now united, free, and independent states.[1] Freedom didn’t apply to Black Americans for another 89 years.

The Emancipation Proclamation was signed by Abraham Lincoln on September 22, 1862, and became effective as of January 1, 1863. (Read more about this here or google it for yourself. While Lincoln didn’t personally approve of slavery, he didn’t think our Constitution had the right to abolish it.)

On April 9, 1865 Robert E. Lee surrendered and this basically ended the Civil War.

It wasn’t until June of 1865 that slaves in Galveston, Texas finally got the word and were freed. Some say the delay was so that the Texas slave owners could get one more crop out of their slaves.

Americans come together to celebrate on the 4th of July and I think we should also celebrate in unity the date that freedom applied to everyone.

I’m not alone in this! Corey Bennett Williams, and online educator, went live to talk a about Juneteenth and how white people can join in the celebrations. She also posted a few links that I’ll share here.

Corey Bennett Williams is an admin in a group called: Race Matters: A Safe Place to Kindly Discuss Race in America – if you’re ready to learn more, join the group and read/watch/listen to what the admins are sharing

Corey’s Video (PLEASE WATCH!!)
Why Juneteenth is America’s True Independence Day
12 Things You Might Not Know About Juneteenth
Ms. Opal Lee’s Juneteenth Dream

The above links were compiled by Corey Bennett Williams and found on her personal Facebook page, on a ‘Facebook Live’ video set to public.

Why should we celebrate this day? Because we all love freedom and freedom is for everyone.

* Really in depth article on Robert E Lee’s stance on slavery
* Wikipedia quote about July 4, 1776
* Inside Edition: What is Juneteenth?
* Minnesota History: Juneteenth: Freedom at Last

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Previous posts in this series:
Intro: #OnceYouSeeRacism
1. Build your “talking about racism” muscles. – {general racism}
2. The Dangers of the Colorblind Mentality – (color blind mentality}
3. Be Color Brave, Not Color Blind {color blind mentality}
4. See and Honor Color {color blind mentality; “the talk”}
5. What is an Ally? {allyship}
6. Allyship – digging deeper {allyship}
7. What Privilege? {white privilege}
8. Nobody is mad at you for being white. Nobody. {white privilege}
9. What “White Privilege” is and is not. {white privilege}
10. You are here… {freedom}

About Jennifer

"Yes, they're all mine." The answer to the question I hear most often.
This entry was posted in #OnceYouSeeRacism, Racism/Race Issues. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Independence Day – Juneteenth

  1. Kathie Harris says:

    I picked that same video of Minnesota and the Civil War to show my kids! Youtube is a gem at times.

  2. I’m encouraged by the fact that our county government will enact Juneteenth as a holiday. I feel like we are seeing a lot of momentum on making this happen!

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