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Monday, June 19, 2006

Juneteenth: African American Emancipation Day

TODAY IS JUNETEENTH. President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 was the the greatest event of the nineteenth century. The joyous news of freedom did not reach Galveston, Texas, until two and a half years after emancipation when Major General Gordon Granger arrived and announced that the Civil War was over and all slaves were free. Ever since, Americans have marked June 19th with special celebrations and traditions commemorating this historic moment.

Yeah? Well what about restitution for hundreds of years of free labor? The African American community is now as American as apple pie, but we are centuries behind in terms of wealth and land distribution. The federal government gave away millions of acres of land to individuals and companies and money for the development of this nation. Blacks were excluded from this largesse. And now we are expected to compete on an equal basis? WHAT? Forty acres and a mule (preferably on oil, gas, coal or uranium lands) will do just fine. We just want what was freely given to others.

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