June 19 Open Thread: It's Juneteenth, everybody!

It's Day 170 of the Year 2019 CE (Gregorian), meaning that it's June 19, 2019 (Gregorian), or 13.0.6.10.11 by the long count


June 19, Emancipation Day. Corpus Christi, 1913

Before I start, I'm going to toss in one bit of unrelated history, a prescient one-liner fron Wikipedia's summary of historical events for June 19th:
2012 – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange requested asylum in London's Ecuadorian Embassy for fear of extradition to the US after publication of previously classified documents including footage of civilian killings by the US army.

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So, Juneteenth. The short form is that this is when the news of the abolition of slavery hit Galveston. So why would that specific date be such a BFD outside of Galveston? Well .... Abe Lincoln's 1862 Emancipation Proclamation freed some of the slaves in the US with an effective date of January 1, 1863. The 13th Amendment, Constitutionally prohibiting slavery was passed by the SEnte in April 1864, by the House in January 1865, and ratified on December 6, 1865. Lee had surrendered at Appomattox on April 9, 1865, and Jefferson Davis was captured on May 10, 1865.

Gordon Granger arrived at Galveston with 2.000 US troops to occupy the now defeated Texas on June 18, 1865. On the following day he read aloud from the balcony of a local building a document known as "General Order No. 3": as follows:

The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.

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There was a large celebration among the freed slave populace of Galveston, which had swelled to great zise as slaveowners from other parts of the Confederacy had fled to Tejas taking some or all of their slaves along with them. This became an annual event, which was given official status in Texas in 1980. It spread, officially or otherwise, throughout the US and is now celebrated in 43 states as either an official state holiday or a ceremonial holiday, or day of observance.

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So, first and foremost, we need a celebration

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Traditionally such celebrations include "traditional" songs such as Swing Low Sweet Chariot:

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Also, Lift Every Voice and Sing:

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ok, so let's just add a few more appropriate pieces without further commentary except to note that the struggle continues:
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Image is June 19, Emancipation Day. Corpus Christi, 1913, by Geroge McCuistion.

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Its an open thread so have at it. The floor is yours
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issue an Executive Order against gays in the military?

Remember when Clinton did not simply use his power as CIC to repeal that order of Reagan's, but instead enlisted Republicans Colin Powell and Dick Morris to shield Clinton from blame from both pro and anti-gay rights forces for triangulating the issue into DAD triangulate the issue into DADT and then had Congress pass it, also to help shield Clinton from accountability/del> vast right wing conspiracies?

Remember when Obama said that, since Congress did, at the request of Bubba, pass DADT, Obama's powers as CIC did not extend to altering DADT without Congressional action? And, while the nation waited for Congressional action (that Democrats delayed intentionally until after the 2010 midterms, but lost anyway), individual gay members of the military suffered irreparable damage?

"Lincoln freed the slaves," is sometimes used as a retort after being told to perform some task or other. It's partly true. Lincoln did free many, but not all, slaves. Of course, Lincoln had plenty of historical "justification" to not free any slaves: Slavery had been a pivotal issue in negotiations prior to the Revolution of 1776 and the Constitutional Convention. (Ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment did the rest, although illegal slavery continues to this in the US, as does much legal or illegal activity that is profitable).

Congress's considering an issue like emancipation and rejecting it would have been one thing. THE only and only Constitutional Convention ever held in the US's considering an issue and rejecting it is quite another. Yep. Lincoln could have sat on his hands. After all, the issue did not affect Lincoln personally, any more than the military's being anti-gay affected Bubba or Obama personally.

However, as stated above, "Lincoln freed {many of} the slaves" by something we call the Emancipation Proclamation, issued September 22, 1862 and effective January 1, 1863. Officially, the "Proclamation" was Executive Order No. 95, issued pursuant to Lincoln's powers as CIC.

Amazing how much an Executive Order issued pursuant to the powers of the President as CIC can accomplish when a President doesn't feel a need to hide behind Congress and how little it supposedly can accomplish when a President does feel that need. Then again, putting the good of the nation and the good of humanity itself above the good of the President and his political party seems to have become an outdated concept.

And then, there was Juneteenth. When I googled this morning, the first hit I got was (PLEASE DO NOT CLICK!) https://www.juneteenth.com/history.htm. This website deceptively entitles itself "National Registry" in large letters, followed by, in smaller, lighter, harder-to see-letters, Juneteenth Organizations and Supporters. Supporters of celebrating the date in 1865 that Texas finally acknowledged having heard of the Emancipation Proclamation, which had become effective on January 1, 1863. Are you kidding me?

Speaking of deception, the first line on the website's first page reads, "

Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free.

Are you kidding me?

Please also note that, before Juneteenth, 1865, the Thirteenth Amendment, forbidding slavery in the US, had passed both Houses of Congress (the Senate in 1864) which "obscure" US news allegedly also escaped Texas and Texan slave owners./s Coincidentally (not), Texas also lagged in ratifying the Thirteenth Amendment. https://texaspolitics.utexas.edu/archive/html/cons/features/0206_01/slid...

What Juneteenth actually commemorates is the too-belated end of the knowing, unlawful extension of slavery within Texas by the State of Texas and Texan slave owners. Hence, no doubt, why a Major General of the US military brought the "news," and not some reporter. Because I'm sure Emancipation would never otherwise have become known in a slave state the size of Texas, had not a high-ranking member of the U.S. military traveled to the state to announce it./s (Sadly, Lincoln had been shot the evening of April 14, 1865, dying April 15, a bit over two months before Juneteenth.)

You can even buy souvenirs of the end of that shameful 18 and a half months.

And, now, google will forever record my visit to that disingenuous website, but without also recording that it was google that served me that website as my first Juneteenth hit, immediately after Twitter results. https://www.axios.com/what-google-knows-about-you-3f6c9b20-4406-4bda-834...

(I don't even care how fat my ADD looks in this post!)

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mimi's picture

and my lightbulb is always in need to be recharged before it dies out completely. So, thanks.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

@mimi

Adult ADD keeps me hopping from one subject to another. Sometimes, if I am lucky, I remember to come back to the original point. I wish it gave me excess energy, the way ADD does to many kids, but that is not one of my symptoms.

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enhydra lutris's picture

strategy was to be Reagan or to the right of Reagan with respect to all things except a few social issues with regard to which the party was supposed to at least appear liberal, or at least more liberal than Reagan. Getting DADT passed and signing it was an attempt to carry that through without seeming to condone being gay. Of course, signing DOMA without at least one veto and scathing veto justification destroyed the illusion that he was supportive of gay rights.

Then again, putting the good of the nation above the good of the President and his political party seems to have become an outdated concept.

Back when I was young there was a rarely used word to distinguish those who put the good of the people and/or the good of the nation above themselves, their party and their state from the vast mob of self-serving politicians. Remember it? Statesman (or woman), maybe in need of an update to statesperson, but there would be no point in that because they are now soooo much more scarce than ever before. Barbara Lee is as close as we will ever get again, I fear.

Thanks for reading, and have a great one.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@enhydra lutris @enhydra lutris

socially just, but potentially controversial, policy with the military was the invention of Truman and/or his advisors. (Racial integration, during an election year in which Truman was embattled from all sides and, IMO, believed he needed the black vote to win. I can think of no other reason why anyone, especially a former member of the White Citizens Council, as Truman was, would pick an election year to do this. Especially that election, where Truman up against a popular Republican, a Progressive (capital P), and a segregationist, among others.

By JFK's day, his advisors told him he absolutely needed the black vote or he would lose. They advised him to call Coretta King about MLK Jr.'s being in prison. MLK, Sr., theretofore a "Lincoln Republican," as were many black people, promised JFK that MLK Sr would do all he could to deliver the black vote to JFK if JFK got Jr. out of prison. And the rest is (more widely-known) history.

Clinton tried to have it both ways with DOMA, but wiki outs him on that one. And the claim that it was needed to avert a Constitutional amendment is cynical crap, intended to be swallowed by those who are shy on information and/or analysis. https://caucus99percent.com/content/lets-amend-constitution

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The Aspie Corner's picture

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Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

Guerrilla Liberalism won't liberate the US or the world from the iron fist of capital.

enhydra lutris's picture

@The Aspie Corner
yet. Thanks for posting it ll the same.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

Raggedy Ann's picture

Happy Juneteenth! Thanks for posting the history - it's always a good refresher!

Beautiful days here in the land of enchantment. Warming a bit everyday. I love the heat, so bring it on! Of course, a little rain in the mix is necessary, too, but not too much. Humidity is not my thing - I only visit humidity occasionally!

Have a lovely day, everyone! Pleasantry

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“It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong.”

-- Voltaire

enhydra lutris's picture

@Raggedy Ann

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

is just a set of musings. Our society does not seem to want to know history or the literature that tells us our history. Few read Madison Smart Bell or Joseph Conrad or others (the list is not that long). I don't understand why our culture is not consciously steeped in this history, and literature, and art, and music. While on a daily basis my powerlessness is made crystal clear to me, the very least I can do is to remember and acknowledge the injustice that others have endured. But our society can't even seem to move itself to look at what we are doing this very day to people who are risking their lives to show us the truth about what is going on.

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enhydra lutris's picture

@randtntx
embedded in this culture, A simplistic false narrative is handed out to all comers who are then inundated with diversions to keep them from seing either the truth or the fnords. Thanks for the music and have a good one.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@enhydra lutris I don't have a clue what a fnord is. Thanks for the OT btw.

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lotlizard's picture

@randtntx  
trilogy . . .

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fnord

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@lotlizard in the public school system, I don't see the fnords. I do have an unexplained feeling of unease and confusion at seemingly random times .... I think you've explained it. Thank you.

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The Aspie Corner's picture

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Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

Guerrilla Liberalism won't liberate the US or the world from the iron fist of capital.

enhydra lutris's picture

@The Aspie Corner
Have a great day.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

how is it that most people on this planet don't get anything close to what they need, let alone a good life.

Harpers Magazine
Keep Going North: At the Border with William T. Vollmann

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smiley7's picture

@randtntx
all your comments today giving me comfort that i'm not alone. Thank you.

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@smiley7 you liked the music. The first record I ever bought was by Black Sabbath. That strikes me as being very funny now, but it happened. I think she does a great job with that cover.

One of the best things about the intertubes, I think, is that we can share our points of view and ideas. Far and wide. In kinda real time. That's unprecedented.
We can also throw each other lifelines. I know, I know, everyone will say they're not real just virtual. But I think they can be real. Here's a thread. It has to do with storytelling, which is acting, which is basic. But you know that.

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magiamma's picture

et al...

cloudy here, dripping mist. My heart is heavy. Looking up, down, about. I love the earth and all that she holds so much. May the low clouds away, heavy disperse, away. away.

Thanks for the thoughtful essay and tunz. Have a good one, el and everyone...

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Stop Climate Change Silence - Start the Conversation

Hot Air Website, Twitter, Facebook

enhydra lutris's picture

@magiamma

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@magiamma I could help. I'm just a fellow traveller who feels much the same way though. I so appreciate your work here, it makes me feel a little less alone. I would have to discover the bitter truth without the company.

Last night at dusk, the big owl (don't know what kind) flew right over my head. It was breathtaking. I also saw a snake slither a few feet away into a crack in a wall, that was breathtaking as well but in a different way :-). Fellow travelers all. I welcome their company.
Hang in there magi....all my best to you.

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magiamma's picture

@randtntx
Fellow travelers all. Gaia. I saw an owl here a couple of times. Big. Hard to see. Harassed relentlessly by the crows. I hope she is thriving.

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Stop Climate Change Silence - Start the Conversation

Hot Air Website, Twitter, Facebook

smiley7's picture

Been down so not in mood to say much except thanks for the OT

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enhydra lutris's picture

@smiley7
soon. Thanks for reading.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@smiley7 you had alligators due this week. I've been having to sprint through your OT's this spring barely stopping to smell the roses. Saturdays have turned into a work day for us as it is the only day of the week when we have available hands to help with the big jobs we're tackling.
But I did see you were expecting the alligators. It sounds as if they are causing the trouble you anticipated. Well, just well. People Alligators will show their true colors.
Sending you best wishes smiley and hope you can stay clear of the worst parts of the swamp.

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@smiley7

you, smiley7. Your goodness, exquisite taste, intelligence and creativity shines through your fonts and we bask in the glow whenever you post.

Life is an often difficult, yet incredible, journey. At times, I've figuratively shaken my fist at, well, who knows what, if anything. Would not want to have missed out on it though, despite some truly awful parts. Trite, I know, but, unlike you, I'm nowhere near a poet.

If you have time, the entire film (Lovers and Other Strangers) is on youtube, no doubt in violation of our Disney corporation copyright/anti-terrorism laws. If the alligators don't give you any time off, though, this much briefer clip provides as good a primer on happiness as anything written by a shrink that I've read. Finally, never forget: "Ya gotta take the good with the bad." (Keyboarded as the characters in the film mangled the aphorism.)

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

NATIONAL MARTINI DAY – June 19

BTW, this is from my trusty wall calendar--a "Big Lots" special, you could say. Smile

Join Magi in thanking you for the interesting and thoughtful essay. Hope you don't mind my chiming in on such a 'silly' topic.

Also, enjoyed the tunes. Nina Simone is one of my favorite artists.

Here you go,

This was from my first Simone album, and, one of my favorites.

Have a nice day!

PleasantryMollie

“Dogs have given us their absolute all. We are the center of their universe. We are the focus of their love and faith and trust. They serve us in return for scraps. It is without a doubt the best deal man has ever made.
~~Roger Caras

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Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

enhydra lutris's picture

@Unabashed Liberal

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --