I’m sure that many of you reading this have heard of Juneteenth, but how many of you actually know what Juneteenth is? If not, you’ve come to the right place! I will explain to you all you need to know about Juneteenth.
WHAT IS JUNETEENTH?
Juneteenth marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed. The troops’ arrival came a full two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Simply put, Juneteenth honors the end to slavery in the United States.
A LOGICAL QUESTION
So, that being said, a lot of people may ask this logical question next: if the Emancipation Proclamation took effect on June 1, why is June 19 Juneteenth? The answer is that the Emancipation Proclamation really only took effect in a Confederate State once the Union Army was there to enforce it. Otherwise, slave owners and the area governments were free to ignore it. Texas was the last to receive the Union liberators.
IS JUNETEENTH A NATIONAL HOLIDAY?
You may also wonder if Juneteenth is a national holiday. Interestingly, the Senate passed a bill Tuesday to establish Juneteenth, the day marking the end of slavery in the United States, as a national holiday. After passing by unanimous consent, the bill now heads to the House of Representatives, where its passage is all but assured, then on to President Biden’s desk for signature into law.
HOW CAN I CELEBRATE OR HONOR JUNETEENTH?
If you are trying to figure out how you can celebrate or honor Juneteenth, listen up because I’ve got some recommendations for you. First, you can educate yourself on its history. You can also amplify black voices. You may want to support black-owned businesses or you can also donate to non-profit organizations.
I hope this has helped you understand more about Juneteenth and has given you actionable steps you can take to support Juneteenth. Remember, we have the power to make change and amplify the voices that deserve the microphone. Use yours to keep making the world a better place for everyone.