Today, June 19th, marks the holiday Juneteenth — celebrating the end of slavery in America. Across the world, citizens are joining in celebrations and protests to honor the day that Texas finally freed its slaves two years after the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Photos from New York and more major cities around the world are finding unique, meaningful ways to mark the occasion and the progress that’s to come.In New York City, thousands are expected to take to the streets and continue protesting and standing in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. Peaceful demonstrations have gone on for weeks since the May 25 death of George Floyd, a Black man killed by a White officer, Derek Chauvin, in Minneapolis, MN. Millions of people across the globe have taken to the streets since George’s tragic death, with more demonstrations expected on this vital day in American history. One rally in NYC will be held at the Brooklyn Public Library, with Borough President Eric Adams and NYC council members expected to attend, according to Channel 4 News in New York.
Along with demonstrations in NYC, today also marks the first time that some New York state employees are being given the day off from work, citing a shift in American culture and race relations. “Although slavery ended over 150 years ago, there has still been rampant, systemic discrimination and injustice in this state and this nation, and we have been working to enact real reforms to address these inequalities,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo observed.
Although many will be, and have already, taking to the streets for the important day, many will also take to virtual celebrations and gathering in honor of Juneteenth. In Dallas, the Juneteenth Music Fesitval will be live streamed for everyone to see, featuring blues and jazz artists. Tickets are $10 and the stream will be made available on YouTube!Other places commemorating the day include the African American Museum of Iowa, The Amistad Center for Arts and Culture in Connecticut, and the Junteenth Urban Music Festival in Memphis, among many others that will also be live streamed with events, music, and education.
For many, this will also be a day to reflect and find ways to become a part of the solution for a more inclusive future. As such, HollywoodLife encourages it’s readership to celebrate Juneteenth by checking out these resources and more.