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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Juneteenth: President Obama Recognized It. Organization Wants More.

Last week was the official Juneteenth observance day. Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. The state of Texas is widely considered the first U.S. state to begin Juneteenth celebrations with informal observances taking place for over a century; it has been an official state holiday since 1980.

Imagine that.

The state that jails more African American people than any other; the state where James Byrd was dragged from the rear of a pickup truck - body parts strewn along the highway by a white hate group, was the first state to recognize the emancipation of its slaves.

Last Friday, The National Juneteenth Observance Foundation held a prayer breakfast and discussion at the National Press Club.  Among the panelists was Reverend Ronald Myers of the National Juneteenth Christian Leadership Council.  In our video interview with him, Dr. Myers explains the need for a national Juneteenth holiday .

Kem Lambert, president of Blacks in Government at the Department of Interior, where Abraham Lincoln tasked the government agency, in an effort ‘deal’ with the race problem in America,  with colonizing free Blacks  to areas like Haiti, the Panama, and Liberia.

On the effort to have President Obama make Juneteenth a national holiday, Lambert said, “The president observes every other holiday.  He has Hispanics and Asian Americans at the White House to celebrate their holidays, while we can’t even get in the front door, not to mention the back.”

Several legislators, include Rep. Danny K. Davis are also helping to make Juneteenth a national holiday.

Alice Patterson of Texas, author of Bridging the Racial and Political Divide, founder of Justice At the Gate, and the granddaughter of a Klu Klux Klan member, says it’s “America is divided and needs to be united.  She is calling for a healing between the races, especially in politics as she explains the difference between the parties, and expresses a concerted genocidal effort aimed at African Americans. She sees the Juneteenth holiday as a way to mend the past.   She was awarded the National Juneteenth Black Holocaust MAAFA award at the prayer breakfast.  Watch our interview with Ms. Patterson as she discusses politics, her life as the granddaughter of a KKK member, and Black genocide.

President Obama issued the following Juneteenth remarks this weekend:

"On this day in 1865, more than two years after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, the word finally came down to slaves in Galveston, Texas, that they were free and entitled to the same “absolute equality of rights” and “right to property” protected under law.

It would take many more years and many more struggles before African-Americans received full and equal treatment under the law. But today, here and around the world, we commemorate Juneteenth as a time to celebrate the rich heritage and significant contributions of African-Americans, and to recommit ourselves – as Americans – to the enduring pursuit of a more perfect union and to the eternal principles of liberty and justice for all".

For more on Juneteenth visit

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