• Alyssa Roberts

It's Official - Juneteenth

Today is a day that should be recognized as a National Holiday. The Emancipation Proclamation, signed by Abraham Lincoln January 1st, 1863, abolished slavery under the confederacy, and the 13th Amendment solidified this order. As of that moment, all enslaved African Americans were free people, but news failed to spread quickly in the southern United States, leaving many subjected to harsh conditions for years after they were liberated. This is because the south was still under confederate control but Juneenth, or June 19th 1865, is the day that changed everything. Approximately 2,000 Union troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas where by executive decree, over 250,000 enslaved African Americas were freed.

Juneteenth is so important for both black history because it is another event that highlights the unjustifiable struggles of African Americans. One may assume that the Emancipation Proclamations word may have reached the entirety of the nation, but when reading is limited and awareness is impeded, news of important events dissipates. Juneteenth recognizes those enslaved two years and five months longer than those suffering in the North. They were subjected to cruelties; insults, beatings, sexual assaults, whippings, and unfortunately, so so much more. On Thursday, June 17th, 46th President Joe Biden, signed a legislation designating Juneteenth as an official holiday in commemoration of an end to slavery in the United States. The House of Representatives approved this bill Wednesday by vote: 415-14. Biden claimed that this approval will be one of the greatest honors of his Presidency. Happy Juneteenth! We here at Gesture, acknowledge this needlessly long period before complete liberation.

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