June 30, 2017

Why it should bother you to say ‘Happy Juneteenth Day’

Elder Michael Jefferson

This past June 19, 2017 marked the 152nd year that the state of Texas announced the abolition of slavery.

Juneteenth is a holiday that commemorates the official emancipation of Negro slaves from the Confederate south. Those familiar with history but unfamiliar with this history may be wondering why it took an additional two years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation for the Negro slave to be freed in all the Confederate States. The answer is simple: The “white establishment,” particularly in the form of government, has always dealt with the dark-skinned creature ambiguously. Therefore, I get it, and I even understand why it should bother you to say “Happy Juneteenth Day.” Actually, I along with many others of the black community would much rather you don’t offer a meaningless pleasantry and instead quote Gil Scott Heron, who said, “The Government You Have Elected is Inoperative” to begin your acknowledgement of your current and historic cruel treatment of black humanity.

This year, Juneteenth occurred one day after the more recognized “Father’s Day.” My first thought when I saw the calendar this year was that even nature lends its allegiance to the marginalization of the dark-skinned humans known publicly in this nation now as African-Americans but more largely referred to as “Niggers.” In New Mexico, as well as the other 49 states, there were several nominal events and celebrations of Juneteenth; however, the holiday in reality took its socially assigned backseat to Father’s Day, Sunday worship, and of course the new sensation, Donald J. Trump. The New Mexico media made little-to-no mention of Juneteenth but continued in this state’s collective practice of the denial of racism while replacing its existence with a “celebration of culture.” “Celebration of culture” is a wall placed around Black America with the sole intent to cause separation and isolate blacks living in this state from the mainstream. For instance, Catholicism, largely embraced by New Mexicans, declares the dark-skinned creature to be uncivilized without possession of a soul. In the absence of a public denial from the Catholic Church of this proclamation from the 1400s, this colonialist mentally continues to have an existence in the darling Land of Enchantment.  New Mexico therefore joins the belief system of the greater white establishment that the “Nigger” is incapable of nurturing, maturing and advancing human life, thus he should be excluded from Father’s Day as well as life in general.

You may be wondering why this writer is not employing a euphemism such as “the N-word” but insists on you, the reader, mentally absorbing and, yes, even verbalizing the word “Nigger.” Well friend, this subject is not intended to be “politically correct.” The fact of the matter is that no political correction, religious correction, societal correction, academic correction, legal correction and scientific correction has ever been advanced that provides reinstatement of the dark-skinned creature to the rightful status of human being.

For example, as recently as 2015, the Vatican has refused to rescind the Papal Bulls of 1452 and 1493, therefore more than one-third of the world continues to acquiesce to Catholic doctrine that says the “African race is divinely inferior to the white race and its natural place is servitude to the superior being.”  Over the last few weeks, both the attorney general of the United States and the federal education department have enacted policies which have displaced previous policy intended to rectify the ramifications of both slavery and Jim Crow laws. These actions effectively dissolve protections for blacks from unjust practices, discrimination and denial of equal access.  During the month of May, nooses were hung and left to be discovered throughout the nation in many prominent African American locations, including the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, as a reminder to the dark-skinned creature’s life is a vapor and any attempt to achieve equality with the white man will be met with death at the hands of the white man.

Still, in this month of May 2017, the justice system rendered three more acquittals of police officers that murdered unarmed Black individuals, despite the jury being presented video evidence, thus reiterating the  premise that law enforcement’s original practice to keep Negros within the defined boundaries of this society is still its chief objective. And finally, as we approach the 4th of July and Veterans Day in November, Congress refuses to reverse a 1958 law that recognizes members of the Confederate Army as Veterans of the United States Military. (May I borrow something from the young people and social media: WTF?) There has not been any effort to make a correction to the colonialist, superiority and domineering disposition this society, specifically the American society,  maintains collectively and globally against dark-skinned creatures referred to as “Niggers.”

Yes, it should bother you to say Happy Juneteenth Day.

One-hundred and fifty-two years after Black slaves left countless locations of forced servitude within the state of Texas there was not then, nor is there now, any cause for Blacks born in America to celebrate. American society, veiled within a mask self-styled as “pop culture” is efficient in hiding its chief agenda item and disposition, which is the continual regulation of Blacks born in America to a level of inferiority normally reserved for animal and plant life. This agenda is systematically, institutionally, and socially woven within the construct of race.  The sad fact is that white has established itself effectively as the default value of human life.  Every human sector strives to prove itself worthy of white acceptance. White, meanwhile, continues to protect itself from both the threat of extinction and a mass attack with inoculations of divisiveness that keep people distracted and blinded from reality.  This article will not solve that problem, nor will it spark the wholesale changes necessary to change the course of humanity. But it does provide you with some answers to why it should bother you to say “Happy Juneteenth Day.”

Elder Michael Jefferson is a minister at Procession Ministries in Albuquerque.