The legacy of slavery and oppression of over 400 years in America is far from over. Saying you are not racist is not enough. Being anti racist is not enough. We as a nation have not broken the shackles of prejudice and racism against black peoples until we dismantle the structural institutionalized mechanisms of racism in America.
On June 19th, 1865 in Galveston, Texas, the last enslaved black people were freed from slavery but in reality they never were. The ending of civil war didn’t end racism. The signing of Emancipation of Proclamation did not get rid of racism. For centuries the black communities endured one of the harshest inhumane brutalities ever recorded in the history of mankind from the time they were forced into chains and enslaved by white colonists. Black men and women were lynched, dehumanized and psychologically paralyzed but their spirit never broke. Black women were repeatedly raped and treated in most disgust manner but they never surrendered their dignity and self respect. The historical aspect of Juneteenth is an emotional and significant date in our tainted history and it is absolutely morally reprehensible and historically unacceptable if we don’t recognize Juneteenth as a federal holiday.
Since the abolishment of the slavery, the black and brown people have countinued to face slavery that was less distinctive and more subtle in its planning on how it impacted black communities across America. Gentrification, discrimination at jobs and and schools, terrorism on black financially thriving communities such as Tulsa and Wilmington, prejudice at various governmental and private entities are some of the structures of institutionalized racism.
What will it take to crush this awful disease of racism that in reality has not freed America as it claims to be the land of free? People like you and me coming together with courage and compassion standing up against racist oppression and subjugation in political landscape and at every level of your and my life from work place to classrooms. It will take strong brave men and women and more particularly the white women and men showing visibility in events on streets and meetings in the halls of chamber where decisions are made. White men and women are not responsible what happened in the past but are responsible for taking some extension of ownership of their ancestral atrocities and benefiting from it currently. The white voice and white people at the forefront are needed and must be present if America is ready for the systematic racism to fade away.
There is no more tomorrow but there is only today. Today I urge you and implore to make a conscientious decision to make part of a mission of your life that you solemnly and sincerely will undertake the task that you will confront racism in all facets of your life and will stand shoulder to shoulder with your black and brown brothers and sisters across the very earth you stand on today where once not too long ago black people did not experience the luxury and comfort you are blessed with and till this day vast majority of them still don’t. The struggle and fight continues.
Freedom Day: The Beauty of Juneteenth