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17.06.2021 03:56 News >> Congress Creates Federal Holiday In US For 'Juneteenth'

Congress Creates Federal Holiday In US For 'Juneteenth'

Biden to sign bill for honoring day in 1865 when slaves learned of their freedom.

The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a bill late Wednesday that makes the freeing of America's slaves a federally recognized national holiday.
Juneteenth, which falls on June 19th, honors the day in 1865 when slaves learned of their freedom after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation.
The vote in the House was 415-15 with bi-partisan support.
Rep. Joyce Beatty, a Democrat from Ohio, hailed the bill, saying: "We cannot change the future if we do not recognize the past."
The bill faced some opposition in the Senate last week, where its passage was narrower. But once passed there, it sailed through the House and now heads to President Joe Biden for his signature.
Still, there were holdouts. Republican Congressman Matt Rosendale of Montana said in a statement that he voted against the bill because "this is an effort by the Left to create a day out of whole cloth to celebrate identity politics as part of its large effort to make Critical Race Theory the reigning ideology of our country."
Critical Race Theory is the idea that racism is a social construct and educators lately have been fiercely debating its teaching in schools.
Some Republicans objected to the title of the bill, "The Juneteenth National Independence Day Act," saying it sounded too similar to the American Independence Day of July 4th, but approved the bill anyway.
Juneteenth has actually been celebrated and recognized for years, mostly in America's Black communities. Some states have already made it a state holiday, and in fact, also on Wednesday, it officially became a new state holiday in Illinois, Abraham Lincoln's home state.​​​​​​​
Juneteenth leapt into the public consciousness last year when then-President Donald Trump announced that he would hold a campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma on that day. After an outcry, he changed the date but later took credit for all the new interest in Juneteenth that he inadvertently created. -



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