What is Juneteenth Day all About ?
HAPPY JUNETEENTH DAY AMERICA – IT’S AFRICAN AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY
Today we take a break and celebrate. Be sure you take a moment and remember what freedom really means TODAY. Because it’s not free for anyone EVER. We certainly support the premise that Juneteenth should be a national holiday; and as such we present a teach in on Juneteenth – so you know how it all began.
Happy Juneteenth Everybody !
Juneteenth should be made national holiday
By Heber Taylor – The Galveston Daily News
Published June 19, 2010
For the past several years, The Daily News has been asking the president of the United States to make Juneteenth a national holiday. Juneteenth, of course, marks the day slaves in Texas learned they were free.
Those who are lobbying for a national holiday are not asking for a paid day off. They are asking for a commemorative day, like Flag Day on June 14 or Patriot Day on Sept. 11. All that would take is a presidential proclamation. Both the U.S. House and Senate have endorsed the idea.
Why is a national celebration for an event that occurred in Galveston and originally affected only those in a single state such a good idea?
Because Juneteenth has become a symbol of the end of slavery. No matter how much we may regret the tragedy of slavery and wish it weren’t a part of this nation’s story, it is. Denying the truth about the past is always unwise.
For those who don’t know, Juneteenth started in Galveston. On Jan. 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued. But the order was meaningless until it could be enforced. It wasn’t until June 19, 1865 — after the Confederacy had been defeated and Union troops landed in Galveston — that the slaves in Texas were told they were free.
People all across the country get this story. That’s why Juneteenth celebrations have been growing all across the country. The celebration started in Galveston. But its significance has come to be understood far, far beyond the island, and far beyond Texas.
The holiday is a perfect solution to that uncomfortable question: What do you do about an awful legacy?
You do what people in Galveston do year after year. You join together to celebrate its end and to pray for reconciliation and healing.
From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of June 19th as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond.
Today Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement. It is a day, a week, and in some areas a month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings. It is a time for reflection and rejoicing. It is a time for assessment, self-improvement and for planning the future. Its growing popularity signifies a level of maturity and dignity in America long over due. In cities across the country, people of all races, nationalities and religions are joining hands to truthfully acknowledge a period in our history that shaped and continues to influence our society today. Sensitized to the conditions and experiences of others, only then can we make significant and lasting improvements in our society.© JUNETEENTH.com
Juneteenth = June + 19th. What is Juneteenth all about?
To remember…On June 19, 1865, General Gordon Granger of the Union Army sailed into Galveston, Texas, on Galveston Island, and proclaimed liberty:
The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor.
This news wasn’t exactly hot off the press, Abraham Lincoln having already issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which abolished slavery in the Confederate States of America, two and a half years earlier, on January 1, 1863. But what was new — for both ex-slaves and ex-slave owners — was having to face freedom and meet its challenges. It’s not easy to start a new life, even when it’s the life you were meant to live.
The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.Why did it take so long for Emancipation to reach Texas? There are theories, but no certainties:
* The messenger was on a slow mule, or was murdered en route
* Slave owners knew of Emancipation but refused to tell their slaves about it
* Federal troops wished to give slave owners more time with their slaves so they could bring in one more cotton crop
*(clipped from Answers.com)Origins
On June 19, 1865, the Union General Gordon Granger rode into Galveston, Tex., to inform inhabitants of the Civil War’s end two months earlier. Two and a half years after Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, Granger’s General Order Number 3 finally freed the last 250,000 slaves whose bondage, due to the minimal Union presence in the region, had been essentially unaffected by Lincoln’s efforts. June 19th—which was quickly shortened to “Juneteenth” among celebrants—has become the African-American addendum to our national Independence Day, for, as Juneteenth jubilees remind us, the Emancipation Proclamation did not bring about emancipation, and the prevailing portrayal of Independence Day ignores the ignominious incidence of slavery entirely.
Observance of Juneteenth has traditionally tended towards church-centered celebrations featuring food, fun, and a focus on self-improvement and education by guest speakers. Although initially associated with Texas and other Southern states, the Civil Rights Era and the Poor People’s March to Washington in 1968, in particular, helped spread the tradition all across America—to the extent that Milwaukee and Minneapolis now host two of the largest Juneteenth celebrations in the nation.
The state of Texas made Juneteenth an official holiday on Jan. 1, 1980, and became the first to grant it government recognition. Several states have since issued proclamations recognizing the holiday, but the Lone Star State remains alone in granting it full state holiday status, a day when government employees have the day off. Nonetheless, supporters and celebrants of Juneteenth continue to grow in number and in diversity; today, Juneteenth is promoted not only as a commemoration of African-American freedom, but as an example and encouragement of self-development and respect for all cultures.(Clipped from Infoplease.com)
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