Juneteenth: Celebrating Freedom.
June 19, 2021
Juneteenth has never been a celebration of victory or an acceptance of the way things are. It’s a celebration of progress. It’s an affirmation that despite the most painful parts of our history, change is possible—and there is still so much work to do.
Today doesn’t mark Abraham Lincoln’s signing of the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation, freeing slaves from the rebellious Confederate states. Today also doesn’t mark the ratification of the 13th Amendment in December 1865, which memorialized the end of slavery into the Constitution.
Today marks the moment when emancipation reached those in the darkest depths of the former Confederacy. Juneteenth celebrates the day when soldiers brought the news of freedom to enslaved Black people in Galveston, Texas (two months after the Confederacy had surrendered and about 2 1/2 years after the Emancipation Proclamation).
Decades after June 19, 1865, Black America would still face the countless horrors of racism that was seeped within the folds of this very country. Even today in 2021, 150+ years past this emancipation, remnants of these horrors remain. We cannot turn an eye to the injustices that so clearly present themselves to us. Yes, progress has been made, and we celebrate that. But this isn’t the end.
Whether today is a celebration for you, or a quiet moment of stillness to reflect on the legacies who have fought tirelessly to live safely and comfortable within their bodies, we acknowledge and understand that there is so much work to be done. We are dedicated to learning more about wow can we be an active and loud part of the change, not simply letting it pass us by.