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What to do on Juneteenth

It’s Juneteenth – the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States, dating back to 1865.

The events of the past few weeks have sparked long overdue conversations surrounding the structural inequities Black Americans face as a result of hundreds of years of enslavement and racist policies.

And while part of observing Juneteenth involves celebrating emancipation, it’s also a day for fostering those conversations, especially among white folks. Slavery may have ended, but its shadow is long. On Juneteenth, we must confront the white supremacy that still infuses American public life.

That’s why I am closing my offices today in recognition of the Juneteenth holiday.

My team and I will use this day to reflect on the recent events, engage in conversations, learn more about the history of this holiday, and stand in solidarity with the Black community.

This is work we need to be doing every day. Our focus on inequality cannot intensify during challenging times and then fade away.

Not sure what to do to observe Juneteenth?

The Skanner has put together a list of events in Portland, including their own incredible livestream. Head over to their website and check out the options, and please, commit to making time for reflection and observance today.

In solidarity,

Earl

Posted on June 19, 2020.