Black ancestors, civil rights heroes to be honored throughout Juneteenth celebrations in Brooklyn

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Brooklyn Councilor Farah N. Louis says she will honor black ancestors and civil rights activists on Saturday during “Second Independence Day,” commemorating the June 15th celebrations in Brooklyn.

“Junieenth, our annual holiday commemorating the end of slavery on June 19, 1865, has been recognized by black Americans since the 1880s,” said Louis, the daughter of Haitian immigrants Caribbean life on Tuesday. “And this ‘Second Independence Day’ continues to find new resonance.

“This year’s celebration comes at a moment of profound social and generational change,” added the representative for the 45th borough of Brooklyn. “Across the country, Americans are counting on the sins of the past and looking for a more just future.

“With this in mind, on Saturday we will honor our black ancestors and all those civil rights activists who fought for freedom before us,” she continued. “In addition, we are once again committed to the fight for equality with a 45-minute selection of speeches, prayers, poems, music, dance and drums.”

Louis said her office organized the June 15 opening ceremony at the Brooklyn Public Library in Grand Army Plaza last year.

She described the event as “a tremendous success,” and as a result she said, “It probably helped Governor Andrew Cuomo recognize Juniteenth as an official national holiday.

“Join us this Saturday as we continue to break down barriers, build communities, and make history,” said Louis.

She also said she will unveil a statue of George Floyd at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday to mark the start of Juniteenth.

The councilor said the six-foot-tall sculpture was created by artist Chris Carnabuci and will be on display in Flatbush Junction about two to three weeks before moving to Union Square in Manhattan.

Louis said she “values ​​Confront ART and the We Are Floyd Foundation, who were“ actively involved in the selection, construction and transportation of the sculpture ”.

Among those expected to speak at the reveal is George Floyd’s brother Terrence Floyd.

Louis said the rapper and poet Papoose would recite a poem he wrote in honor of George Floyd.

A full Juneteenth rally and “Cel-Liberation” will follow at 10:00 AM at the Brooklyn Public Library.

Louis said the cast will include the PUSH dance team; Ashley Richards; Blue Angels Drumline; and Brooklyn Unbound Drumline.

Parishioners visit one of the murals in George Floyd Square, now behind barricades that formerly blocked the street after city officials began reopening George Floyd Square, the area where George Floyd in the previous year Minneapolis, Minnesota, killed in police custody, USA, June 3, 2021. REUTERS / Nicole Neri, file

According to, Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States.

Originating in Galveston, TX in 1865, said the June 19th celebration spread across the United States and beyond as African American Emancipation Day.

“Today Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement,” it said. “It’s a day, a week, and in some areas, a month of celebrations, guest speakers, picnics, and family gatherings.

“It is a time of reflection and joy. It is a time for assessment, self-improvement and planning for the future, “added “Its growing popularity in America means a long overdue level of maturity and dignity.”

It states that in cities across the country, people of all races, nationalities and religions “come together to truly recognize an era in our history that shapes and continues to influence our society today.

“Sensitized to the conditions and experiences of others, only then can we achieve significant and sustainable improvements in our society,” said

Caribbean-American Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke (NY-09) recalled the commemoration of the 156th anniversary of June 19, “When Union forces arrived in Galveston, Texas and the abolition of slavery two years after the Emancipation Proclamation and two months after the end of the civil war.

“With their freedom, the original sin of the American experiment ended, and a chapter – optimism and promise – was opened. The productive importance of Juneteenth continues to resonate in our global diaspora, ”said Clarke, daughter of Jamaican immigrants Caribbean life. “Whether you are from the Caribbean or Africa, born in America or abroad, June 10th marks the release of many of our ancestors from bondage.

“However, the realization that while free, black Americans continue to face racial discrimination, inequality and terror; and violence is still a cause for concern and a clear call to action, “added Clarke, Chair of the Immigration Task Force for the Black Caucus, a senior member of the US House of Representatives’ energy and trade committee and a senior member of the House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee.

“June is more than a celebration; it is a reminder of the centuries of painful plight of enslaved people, ”the congresswoman continued. “We must never forget the sacrifices of our ancestors who paved the way for us to stand here today, the way into tomorrow. We honor our ancestors and will continue to work in their honor. “

Public attorney Jumaane Williams also said Caribbean life that the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 “should have granted the people of African descent in the United States rights and privileges that need not yet be fully realized.

“We are collectively not yet free from this system of privileges; but like our ancestors we celebrate the tenth of June because, like our ancestors, we believe in true freedom, ”said the son of Grenadian immigrants. “And also, as they did, we continue with pragmatic hope; it comes.

“As a nation realizes the importance of this holiday, we will continue to strive to create the transformative changes, the freedoms that were promised but not received 150 years ago,” added Williams.

Congregation member Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn, chairman of the Brooklyn Democratic Party, said Juneteenth is “a day of appreciation for people of color across the country, and I am delighted to see more people from different backgrounds celebrate.

“Here in New York we are fortunate enough to finally be able to celebrate June 10th, a holiday for the liberation of slaves in the United States, as an official holiday,” said the daughter of Haitian immigrants who heads the 42nd assembly district in Brooklyn. “As we continue to campaign for social justice reform today, we must not forget history. I’m proud to celebrate this holiday with our wonderful Brooklyn community. “

Haiti-born council member Dr. Mathieu Eugene said, “This historic moment is an important reminder of the struggle that the African American community has been through for centuries in the struggle for acceptance, equality and equal rights on the global spectrum, a struggle that continues in America today.

“The key to equality is education, acceptance and appreciation for one another,” said Dr. Eugene, who represents the 40th borough in Brooklyn. “And by working together and focusing on the common good that we all embody as human beings, we honor our ancestors by continuing the path to equality and respect for all people, regardless of race, gender, nationality or religion.

“On June 10th, we celebrate the freedom of the African American community, but we recognize that we are only truly free when everyone can live and work as human beings in a peaceful and respectful environment,” added Eugene, a candidate for the office Brooklyn Borough President, added.

Veteran Caribbean Legislator N. Nick Perry noted that 156 years ago, on June 19, 1965, “Thousands of blacks working in the fields of Texas and other southern states received the late news that they were theirs Freedom was withheld for more than six months by rebellious slave masters who refused to accept President Abraham Lincoln’s proclamation of emancipation.

“As we commemorate and celebrate Juniteenth, it is important for us to remain aware of the fact that true freedom, including economic freedom, is still an elusive dream for millions of black Americans and continues to enjoy their rights and equal opportunities in America today “said Jamaica-born Perry, who represents the 58th Congregation District in Brooklyn.

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