Originally posted on Mind of Malaka:
Today is Juneteenth, the day some of us in the Black community celebrate – or at least recognize – the ending of slavery and the beginning of emancipation. What hopes and dreams those newly freed Negroes must have harbored in their hearts on the day the news was read to them (two years after emancipation was officially declared) on that day. To be finally free! It must have been breathtaking, frightening, exhilarating.
What we know now, and what those poor souls couldn’t have imagined then, is that that freedom wouldn’t extend to them full citizenship or human rights or even the benefit of whole personhood. An African born in America was to be counted as 3/5th of a person, would have specific laws ratified to govern their existence and mobility; would be socially and economically marginalized and then have their poverty criminalized; would be brutalized for sport; and then…
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