“No one of us can be free until everyone is free.”
This year, finally, I have informed myself about Juneteenth. Yes, I know, where have I been? But I am here now. Juneteenth, when the last of the enslaved black population in Galveston, Texas received word that they were officially free, should be a national holiday, as universally celebrated in the U.S. as July 4th. With more advocacy from all of us, we can make that happen. Knowing and embracing our history is crucial to who we are, our historical amnesia, willful or unconscious, our downfall.
Have a great day everyone and here are some links:
What is Juneteenth? From the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture: “Juneteenth marks our country’s second independence day. Though it has long been celebrated among the African American community, it is a history that has been marginalized and still remains largely unknown to the wider public. The legacy of Juneteenth shows the value of deep hope and urgent organizing in uncertain times. This Museum is a community space where that spirit can continue to live on – where histories like this one can surface, and new stories with equal urgency can be told.”
Here are some more informational links on Junteenth via my sister Joan Sullivan and her colleague Claudia Martinez-Fritzges:
Performance: Juneteenth Celebration at The Greene Space on Friday, June 19 at 7 PM
“This year, we celebrate Juneteenth by highlighting beautiful, urgent and thought-provoking performances and conversations in The Greene Space by Black Americans. We’re revisiting important talks — touching on art and art-making, American history, 21st-century schooling and racial integration, police abuse and much more — and bringing you incredible moments through song, dance and theatre, all curated by our Black staff. Click Juneteenth
Featuring: musician Mr. Reed, actor Wendell Pierce, tap dance legend Savion Glover, author Isabel Wilkerson, solitary survivor and organizer Mark Hopkins, writer and activist Sonia Sanchez, founder of Raheem AI Brandon Anderson, reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones, ballerina Misty Copeland, Ethel’s Club founder Naj Austin, The Honey Bees Double Dutch Team, author Kiley Reid, jazz and experimental singer Melanie Charles, comedian Ike Ufomadu, composer Damien Sneed, philosopher and public intellectual Cornel West, climate change activist Vic Barrett, rapper Yoh, the Morehouse College Glee Club and Wynton Marsalis & Members of Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.”
Documentary Screening free from PBS until July 4 – The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution
“In the turbulent 1960s, change was coming to America and the fault lines could no longer be ignored — cities were burning, Vietnam was exploding, and disputes raged over equality and civil rights. A new revolutionary culture was emerging and it sought to drastically transform the system. The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense would, for a short time, put itself at the vanguard of that change. The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution is the first feature-length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party, its significance to the broader American culture, its cultural and political awakening for black people, and the painful lessons wrought when a movement derails.” Click Independent Lens
With special thanks to Anne Maguire.