Updated: Aug 14, 2020
With so much tragedy and social push back against a racist system under fire, it hardly seems a cause to celebrate Juneteenth's significance as the African American's Independence Day. In light of the racial unrest in the United States, this Juneteenth may well fall by the wayside. The racial climate and all its social ramifications are once again in the forefront of our nation. The pot of United States' racist character is no longer simmering. It has come to a sporadic boiling over. The lofty ideals that this nation has always proclaimed falls woefully short, even in 2020, with gut wrenching and heart breaking tragedy after tragedy
Yet, I say, even in light of our current racial discord, we should never forget the people who came before us. Those African Americans who suffered in ways we can only imagine. Their plight was much harder and a lot longer without being able to voice their offenses and demand change. They did not have the freedom to peacefully protest or speak out against the atrocities inflicted upon them. Countless lives were lost in those days. It seems to be a repetitious evil in this land, a spirit of racism keeping it's tentacles tightly enclosed with wicked determination. Emancipation from enslavement unfortunately did not include equal citizenship or the cessation of racial bias. But do not let this season of discontent stop you from celebrating a milestone from the past. Juneteenth Day is a state official holiday for Texas but an unofficially celebrated one in the nation.
The state of Texas' final release of enslaved people in 1865 has become the representative day for African American independence. Take time today and reflect, remember those who were surviving in times worse than these. Pray for real change...change in people's hearts. A spiritual change that will completely remove the pot from the fire not just keep it low simmering. Yes, laws and systems must be changed but that only serves to quell the boiling over and keeps the pot subtly simmering until, once again, it gets hot enough to boil and eventually overflows. The only change that will permanently eradicate racism is when peoples hearts are changed.