Yesterday lawmakers voted, and president Joe Biden signed into law an ordinance that declares Juneteenth a national federal holiday. The United States hasn’t seen a new national law since Martin Luther King Day was declared a national holiday.

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President Abraham Lincoln declared abolish slavery in 1863, but some slaves did not learn until their freedom until June 19, 1865. That’s two whole years later they learned that they should have been getting paid for their labor, but they believed that they were still slaves. I bet there was no retroactive pay for the former slaves for their two years of work.

It’s all good that Juneteenth it’s finally being acknowledged, but what about some real changes for Black people today? I want to see Juneteenth written about and taught in our schools. Great historians have said that if we don’t learn from our history that it will be repeated, and this is one part of history that we cannot be repeated.

Take some time out this weekend to learn about Juneteenth and what it means and how we can move forward to do better. There will be plenty of opportunities for you to learn about Juneteenth and to celebrate our ancestors in the Capital Region this weekend.

If you are in Troy tomorrow morning you can learn about Juneteenth and also be part of the park dedication Geneva Pompey Park located at the corner of Seventh Avenue and Ingalls in Troy.

Also in Troy, the Juneteenth Freedom Day Parade and Celebration will take place from 11 AM to 1 PM at the Best Western Plus Franklin Square Inn at 14th St. in Troy

The Juneteenth Freedom Day Celebration and Open house will take place tomorrow at the Underground Railroad Education. Center at 194 Irvington Ave. in Albany from 12:30 to 4:30 PM.

The African American Cultural Center of the Capital Region, Inc. will hold a celebration at 135 South Pearl St. in Albany tomorrow from 3 to 11 PM.

Schenectady Will also be celebrating. They are holding the Juneteenth Celebrating the End of Slavery with Hamilton Hill Arts Center. But event will be held tomorrow at 1 PM at the art center located at 409 Schenectady St., Schenectady, NY.

Make sure you come out and learn about Juneteenth while you are also having fun. I hope to see some of you there.

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