The Fourth of July is a major national holiday celebrated by every single American. It’s the day we became independent. Hear that again-independent. We did not become a truly free nation that day from our own tyranny. Our president was a slaveholder along with a majority of our “independence” leaders. Some people would say the past is the past and let bygones be bygones. But that does not make us an honest nation, a learned nation, or an equal nation. On June 19th, 1865 the last standing community of slaveholders in Galveston, Texas was forced to relent their horrible control and free their slaves. Unfortunately, the Emancipation Proclamation ordered slaveholders to free their own slaves which went ignored throughout the nation. This is a historical marker day that Lincoln’s original order to free the slaves finally commenced. To learn more about slavery and celebrating Juneteenth use this link for Ted Williams Juneteenth and 1619 celebration. In order for us to honestly celebrate the entire country’s freedom, we must incorporate June 19th or Juneteenth into our national holidays. That is the day we began a journey into freedom for our entire nation.
We celebrate some very odd holidays in America. If you think about Christmas it doesn’t include every American yet we all get that day off from work. How about Thanksgiving’s dishonest display of friendship amongst American settlers and Native Americans? We know that those same settlers enforced a genocide of those same friendly people. So why do we celebrate it again? For political pandering. We should review our options for making Juneteenth our newest national holiday that celebrates more than our independence, it celebrates all of Americans’ freedom from tyranny. Let us review our options to make this a paid day off to celebrate.
Over 70 cities across America celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day instead of Columbus Day. It celebrates the people who were slaughtered, enslaved, and destroyed by Columbus and Westernization. This was an important municipal change that can be an option for Juneteenth. Cities could create Juneteenth as a municipal holiday while shuttering Columbus Day. Cities would not have to work with state or national officials to promote this Freedom Day while enhancing the likelihood that other cities would mimic this good work for all the American people. This could be the beginning of a national day of observation. Politically speaking, movements and political changes are a trickle-up effect so cities would eventually pressure and influence the national government to make a national holiday.
A focus of this new holiday must be on the workers actually having a day off for the celebration of freedom. According to Money magazine, Columbus Day and other holidays find 84% of businesses are open. We have all been prodded and poked with massive advertisements to shop on holidays from Thanksgiving’s Black Friday which now starts on Thanksgiving mornings to sales specials for Presidents Day. It’s generally federal and municipal workers and school children that receive the free day off for holidays. It costs our governments millions for holidays that commemorate falsehoods like Columbus Day. That must end for Juneteenth since the majority of fast food and retail workers are African-Americans. It’s time that for one holiday we actually shut down what we have erroneously considered essential services in the Covid-19 era to provide a real holiday for the people that we are celebrating.
This holiday is one way we can indoctrinate our voices of the BLM protests of our new century. It’s one way we finally accept our falsehoods and change them for the inclusivity of all Americans. Happy Juneteenth America! Finally, freedom really rings.
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