As a part of our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice, we recognize observances and holidays that center the voices and experiences of historically excluded peoples in the United States. Today, we mark Juneteenth–its second Federal recognition, following more than 150 years of observance in Black communities
As an educational organization, we want to lift up the words of others who share our commitment to learning. As a predominantly white organization striving toward antiracist practice, and working to build equity and inclusion, we believe that the observance of Juneteenth should amplify Black voices and the Black experience.
Learn about the history of Juneteenth: At the Zinn Education Project, Christopher Wilson, Experience Design Director at Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, writes “Very often, Juneteenth is presented as a story of ‘news’ of the Emancipation Proclamation ‘traveling slowly’ to the Deep South and Texas, but it was really a story of power traveling slowly, and of freedom being seized.”
Recognize Juneteenth at your school: The National Museum of African American History and Culture provides a framework and resources for teaching elementary-aged children about the context, meaning, and celebration of Juneteenth.
One voice: In this photo essay, Elroy "EJ" Johnson, a middle school history teacher in Dallas, documents Juneteenth celebrations and depicts “both Black joy and Black resistance in neighborhoods that have a long history to the Black community in Dallas.”
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Brad Rathgeber (he/him/his)