Congressman John Garamendi

Representing the 3rd District of California
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Congressman Garamendi’s Statement on Juneteenth

June 19, 2010
Press Release

ANTIOCH, CA – Congressman John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek, CA) today issued the following statement in recognition of Juneteenth, celebrated June 19th, the oldest, nationally-celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States:

"On this Juneteenth, Americans across the nation will recognize a day that represents freedom from oppression and justice for all. One-hundred-and-forty-five years ago, Union soldiers arriving in Galveston, Texas informed local slaves that the Civil War was over and that they were now free from the shackles of tyranny.

"With the wisdom of time, we now know both how historic and how incomplete their celebration really was on that day. Generations would continue the struggle for true equality for African Americans. Their trials and triumphs would inspire millions of Americans to reevaluate their own positions in society and spawn important civil rights and social justice movements that continue to resonate to this day.

"From the halls of Congress to living rooms throughout this country, on this Juneteenth, I hope every American is committed to a freer and more just world. America, the land of the free and home of the brave, has much to be proud of, but we must never abandon the expectation that our best and brightest days are yet to come."