Juneteenth, an annual holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States, has been celebrated by African-Americans since the late 1800s.
But in recent years, and particularly following nationwide protests over police brutality and the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and other Black Americans, there is a renewed interest in the day that celebrates freedom.
The celebration continues to resonate in new ways, given the sweeping changes and widespread protests across the U.S. over the last year and following a guilty verdict in the killing of Mr. Floyd.
("So You Want to Learn About Juneteenth?", New York Times)
Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed. The troops’ arrival came a full two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth honors the end to slavery in the United States and is considered the longest-running African American holiday.
Confederate General Robert E. Lee had surrendered at Appomattox Court House two months earlier in Virginia, but slavery had remained relatively unaffected in Texas—until U.S. General Gordon Granger stood on Texas soil and read General Orders No. 3: “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.”
("What is Juneteenth?", History.com)
This year numerous states have passed measures to restict voting rights that predominantly effect communities of color. Even more are working on passing restrictive legislation as we speak. Black people in America have been fighting for freedom since our arrival. While Juneteenth commemorates being physically free, legislation such as this during a time where our voting rights are so important remind us that we still have a long way to go. PB-Resources wants to help tackle restrictive voting laws this Juneteenth, because Black people deserve to be heard.
How the bill(s) that were passed in AL effect voting in that state:
Shorten window to apply for a mail ballot
Leave your senator a message
What to say: Hello, I'm [NAME], a constituent calling from [CITY, ZIP]. I'm extremely concerned about the rising number of bills being introduced to restrict voting rights across the nation. These bills are most harmful to the elderly, indigenous communities, low income communities, and people of color. I'm calling to urge [Senator/Representative NAME] to demand bipartisan support for the For The People act. I strongly support voting rights legislation that reduces a state's ability to restrict voting rights for their citizens. Please pass along my concerns to the [senator/representative]. I'd appreciate if your office could follow up with me with any news related to this issue. I can be reached at [CONTACT INFO]. Thanks so much for taking my call.
Shelby, Richard C.