Happy Juneteenth! Today we as Americans commemorate the issuing of General Order No. 3 by Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger in 1865, enforcing the Emancipation Proclamation in Texas, marking a crucial moment in the quest to end slavery across the continental U.S. following the conclusion of the Civil War.
Since 1980, Juneteenth has been recognized as a state holiday in Texas. But more and more states have officially recognized Juneteenth in recent years; despite most Americans not knowing what it is, powerful institutions have tried to mainstream it.
In a 2021 response to the racial animosity from the previous summer of rage, President Joe Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law after it passed both chambers of Congress with “overwhelming support.”
But recognizing the end of black enslavement is not what the federal recognition of Juneteenth is actually about. After all, it’s not as though anyone in the U.S. is upset slavery was abolished; black Americans are widely celebrated at every level of American society. But as earlier indicated, Juneteenth simply hasn’t caught on.
Nevertheless, in an act of leftist intersectional solidarity and conservative cultural capitulation, Juneteenth became the U.S.’s 11th federal holiday, not counting Inauguration Day, and the second explicitly dedicated to American “independence.”
The very name of the legislation is incredibly revealing. Referring to it as a “National Independence Day” — as opposed to the Fourth of July, America’s original Independence Day, that doesn’t enjoy the “national” language — is semantic manipulation intended to convey that this is the real independence day. This bestowal of honor on Juneteenth is an exercise in refounding the country in accordance with the priorities of the intersectional identitarian left (e.g., direct democracy, expansive legal privileges for preferential political groups, and the weaponization of government against “bitter clingers”) in the pursuit of casting aside the few remaining constitutional and republican norms of the American founding such as a societal reverence for natural law and federalism.
But because most Americans are rightfully skeptical of the people telling them to disregard their traditions and culture, it’s why corporate entities must work in union with the federal government to monolithically push cultural agendas like Juneteenth.
Juneteenth is a direct challenge to the few remaining columns of America’s civic pantheon. The old traditions of patriotic service and duty are rapidly fading, and in place rises an aggressive, ever-expanding civil rights regime, maliciously motivated by identitarian grievance, that reduces Americans to the sum of their parts while stripping them of their uniqueness as individual actors in our somehow still enduring republic.
This article has been updated since publication.