If you’re not aware, Juneteenth is around the corner. It is the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people were freed over two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Recently acknowledged as a federal holiday, people are already trying to celebrate the day in ways that are awkward and quite weird. With companies doing a host of obnoxious activities that don’t really move the needle, I think creating a quick cheat sheet of things you shouldn’t do or say to your Black friends for the holiday is necessary.
1.“You know, I completed my ancestry report, and I am 2.5% Nigerian.”
2.Don’t attempt to cook a “soul food” dish as a way to connect.
3.Why are you breaking out in random trendy dances?
4.Our hair doesn’t grow the same, so don’t even bother.
5.Haphazardly using Black movie/music references as an attempt to be relevant will fail every time.
6.Black History is American history, but we don’t need to hear random facts.
7.We don’t need or want your awkward apology for slavery on behalf of your ancestors.
8.Please don’t tell me how many Black friends you have!
9.Performative actions are never okay.
10.The best way to celebrate is to recognize and honor the history of Juneteenth, but don't overdo it.
Cheers to a Happy Juneteenth!
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