Civil Rights

Juneteenth Is a Good Holiday. Of Course the Government Is Screwing It Up.

Yet more evidence that we are ruled by incompetents.


Making Juneteenth a national holiday really ought not to be controversial or complicated. Unfortunately, our political culture is dominated by a collection of incompetents and imbeciles for which nothing can pass without screw-ups and unnecessary outrage.

Juneteenth—long celebrated in parts of America's black culture on June 19 but increasingly crossing over in the mainstream, as Reason's Zuri Davis detailed—marks the day in 1865 that the Union Army marched into Galveston, Texas, and freed roughly 250,000 slaves. Over the years, it has become a celebration of the snuffing out of chattel slavery within the United States, a moment when the high ideals celebrated on the Fourth of July became more real. It's about freedom. And, as you've probably heard by now, it is America's newest federal holiday thanks to a piece of legislation that President Joe Biden signed earlier this week.

That's wonderful. Happy Juneteenth.

Here's what's not so wonderful. The official designation of a new national holiday just days before it arrives has triggered government officials' most powerful instinct: their desire to get paid for not doing work. With alacrity previously unfathomable, federal bureaucrats have rushed to give themselves a three-day weekend. Most of the federal government is shut down today.

No one will be too broken up about one fewer day of IRS audits or Department of Labor regulation-making or whatever it is they do at the Department of Commerce. But the rush to unexpectedly observe a new holiday does cause problems in the places where normal people, unfortunately, have no choice but to interact with the government.

Like public schools, some of which suddenly announced on Thursday that classes were canceled on Friday. Sorry, parents who have to suddenly call off work or find alternative arrangements for your kids.

Courts, too, are affected. That means hearings have been postponed at the last minute and some people who might otherwise have been freed on Friday will have to spend the long weekend in jail. What is Juneteenth celebrating again? Oh, right.

None of these disruptions are the fault of Juneteenth or those who rightfully wanted to make the holiday a permanent part of America's annual observances, of course. It's just standard-issue government incompetence and another example of officials' general disregard for the people whose hard work actually funds bureaucrats' and teachers' paychecks.

But if the incompetents haven't totally ruined your Juneteenth good mood, save some room for the imbeciles who are determined to fold this long-overdue recognition of Juneteenth into their tinfoil-hat theories about the destruction of American values. As if "celebrating human freedom from bondage" wasn't a quintessential American value.

People like Rep. Matt Rosendale, (R–Mont.), one of the 14 Republican members of Congress who voted against designating Juneteenth as a federal holiday. According to him, this is just another squelchy step down the slippery slope of socialism.

"Replace the Fourth of July." C'mon. The federal government still recognizes Columbus Day—and good luck clawing that extra three-day weekend away from America's hard-working bureaucrats.

Sure, there's massive cognitive dissonance in the fact the federal government now celebrates both the end of slavery and a guy who did a whole lot of enslaving (and worse). But does anyone expect ideologically consistent positions from the federal government?

Still, some culture warring conservatives are seriously leaning into this argument in really bizarre ways. Here's Charlie Kirk, head of Turning Points USA, condemning the decision to make Juneteenth a federal holiday.

And here's Charlie Kirk on several other occasions celebrating the importance of Juneteenth, because the end of slavery is worth celebrating.

Why the change? It might have to do with the fact that being mad about stuff is pretty much the only unifying principle that remains in some conservative circles. That beast must be fed even if it means getting angry at positions that you yourself held just 12 months ago.

Or it might just be the brain-rotting effects of partisanship. Kirk's old tweets echo something that former President Donald Trump liked to talk about at his campaign rallies—often as if he'd only just discovered this fact. Lincoln was a Republican, and Republicans freed the slaves. Relatedly, it was politicians with "D" next to their names who by-and-large were responsible for and defended the awfulness of Jim Crow and post-Reconstruction institutionalized racism.

What does that mean in 2021? A whole lot of nothing, because political parties aren't inherently moral or immoral entities. The goal of politics isn't to add up points for your side over the course of national history and then gesture at the scoreboard. It's to maximize human freedom and flourishing right now.

Sometimes that requires kicking the crap out of people who believe it's cool to own other human beings. Sometimes that means recognizing, officially, that the end of slavery in the country was kind of a big deal. Doing so doesn't undermine American values or replace the significance of the Fourth of July. Heck, if we could celebrate an expansion of human freedom once a week, I'd be down for that.

You know what? Tell the IRS they can take every Friday off.

NEXT: 50 Years Into the War on Drugs, Drugs Are Winning

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  1. How is this not cultural appropriation?

    1. +1 Woke Point

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    2. “Juneteenth … marks the day in 1865 that the Union Army marched into Galveston, Texas, and freed roughly 250,000 slaves.”

      How is this not “white savior-ism?”

      1. Lest we forget; that Union Army was directed by well known REPUBLICAN, A. Lincoln.

        1. Lincoln was dead on Juneteenth. He died, like the rest of us, on tax day, April 15.

      2. It’s more of an equal attention cake holiday. So was MLK day. It’s benign. But shouldn’t be a federal holiday.

      3. <>

        How is WHAT not white-savior-ism? The acknowledgement of a historical fact ? So … there are actual EVENTS that it is impossible to reference without being guilty of savior-ism? Do you know how irrational/anti-intellectual/just plain silly that sounds ?

        1. That was my ironic point.

    3. It is also not woke, as it remembers a white saviour event.

      1. Ha ha. Beat you by one minute.

    4. White peeps still gotta go to work.

    5. OK, so what do libertarians get in exchange for Juneteenth?

      Is the BLM coalition going to start following the NAP and renounce the “no justice, no peace” mantra which leads to mob violence, destruction of public memorials, and violent assaults?

      Will affirmative action and other forms of barnyard collectivism be abolished?

      Are the various race hustling groups going to renounce income transfers, like the “reparations for slavery” racket?

      Will the First Amendment right to fly the Confederate battleflag as a symbol of resistance to an overpowering federal government be respected?

      Or is it the same old story: REASON makes a bunch of concessions, gets nothing in return, and then calls the result a “fair trade?”

      1. “Is the BLM coalition going to start following the NAP and renounce the “no justice, no peace” mantra …”

        NAP ?

        1. NAP is the Non-Aggression Principle, which some designate as the definition of Libertaianism.

          I prefer to use the Non-Initiation of Force and Fraud (NIFF) Principle, which is more precise and also so I can refer to myself and other Libertarians as…

          The Knights (and Ladies and Trans) Who Say “*NIFF!*”

      2. I hope next year to exchange residency in the USA for somewhere else, and leave this festering shithole with 2 toxic political cults.

        1. Best of luck to you. Which place in the present world is better on both social and economic freedom that you would prefer?

          1. Xanadu?
            Bali Hai?
            Galt’s Gulch?

  2. I have this great idea for a new TV show. The premise is simple. Just toss a liberal celebrity into the ring with a couple of Marines, and spend about an hour filming him getting the living shit beat out of him. Wouldn’t it be great, every night you can turn on your TV and watch some loathsome parasite like Gavin Newsom or Chuck Schumer getting a Front Street Face Lift? If that’s not a hit, I don’t know what is!

    1. Marines won’t do that. Marine’s have discipline. Don’t confuse Marines with rednecks.

      1. LOL, you’ve never served with actual Marines if you believe that nonsense. Just ask Shawn Michaels.

  3. In order to keep the federal holidays balanced, we should get rid of the loathsome holiday labor day, a holiday that celebrates lazyness, mobs, and racketeering.

    1. Work in a 24/7 industry, say an oil refinery, power plant, or hospital, and this just means you will work that day but get paid overtime for working a ‘holiday.’ If you had that day off anyway, then it means you get paid an extra holiday pay.
      Most employers in that situation have a set number of paid holidays, so to get this one recognized the union will have to give one up, probably MLK day, which is in the middle of winter.

    2. Labor Day exists as a slap in the face of European Socialists who demand that unions be celebrated on May 1st. But yeah, Labor Day is basically Union Day, just without the overt socialist trappings and maypoles.

      1. It was to appease the commies after the Pullman strike ‘massacre’.

  4. Kirk’s objection seems to be the odd phrasing of “National Independence Day Act”, which is a misnomer, as it is hard to reconcile that being an appropriate description of what is being celebrated.

    1. Yeah, there was no reason to call it anything other than Juneteenth Day. Adding the National Independence Day part of it is basically the same as the 1619 Project racialists claiming that 1619 is the real start of the nation’s history.

    2. Should have been “Emancipation” rather than “Independence”. Would have made a lot of cranks slightly less furious.

      1. The problem is, the actual “Emancipation” day would be December 6th, which is when the last slaves were actually freed. “Juneteenth” celebrates a purely local event in Texas, of no national significance.

        While June 19th was when the last slaves in Confederate territory were freed pursuant to the Emancipation proclamation, that proclamation only applied to the states that seceded. Maryland didn’t secede, they were permitted to retain slavery until the 13th amendment was ratified, in December.

    3. No his objection is the usual partisan horseshit. The initial bill to consider a vote on S475 (Juneteenth as a holiday) was a purely partisan vote – all D’s for, all R’s against. No amendment was introduced to changed the name to Juneteenth Freedom Day or Juneteenth Emancipation Day or somesuch.

      1. It passed 415-14 in the house and was unanimous in the senate. You are such a lying piece of lefty shit.

        1. The initial bill in the House is the one that creates a HOUSE resolution from a Senate bill. That is the bill that can get amended or tabled or voted on. Roll call on that is:

          1. What’s cherry-picking paying these days, you cowardly piece of lefty shit?

            1. Lmao can you imagine being this guy and thinking “lefty” somehow makes your statement more derogatory?

          2. Hey idiot… do you think the objection to it is this:

            All points of order against consideration of the bill are waived.

            God damn.

            You do know about the games the politicians play to allow posturing around these bills right?

      2. You are the usual partisan horseshit, liar

    4. Yeah, but the author of the piece needed to find a way to attack conservatives for at minimum an article that should have stopped after the discussion of another PAID federal holiday.

  5. A three day weekend for a holiday that lands on a Saturday is stupid. But yes, celebrate Juneteenth on Saturday. Charlie Kirk is an ass. He’s pandering to an audience only he imagines is there.

    1. Perhaps it is stupid to observe a Saturday holiday on Friday, but its a practice as old as federal holidays themselves. July 4th, Veterans Day, Christmas, and New Years Day are all date-defined holidays that get observed on a Friday or a Monday when they fall on a weekend

      1. The Holiday is June 19th. Just like other Holidays they pay you for the Friday or Monday if it falls on the weekend. It’s not a Saturday Holiday like Thanksgiving is always a Thursday Holiday.

  6. Its a dumb holiday with a dumb name. Nothing official happened. News travelled slow back in the 19th Century. The Battle of New Orleans was fought weeks after the war ended

    1. I think it’s a good holiday with a bad name.

      1. This. I’m no fan of holiday largesse at the federal level, but this one is more inspiring than “Presidents Day”, an abomination that was only created to preserve some sort of hat tip to Lincoln’s & Washington’s birthdays after legislators insisted that adding MLK Day was just holiday inflation. It’s also a lot more inspiring than Labor Day. And while New Year’s Day will be a holiday forever it is a bit of a joke to have a holiday devoted to celebrating everyone’s hangover.

    2. Juneteenth is black people’s Cinco de Mayo. I might give a crap if they had invented tequila. Over/under on how long it takes before it fully embraces it’s role and becomes the ‘wear baggy clothes and smoke weed’ holiday, in line behind the ‘wear green and drink guinness’ and the ‘wear a sombrero and drink modelo’ holidays? I give it a decade.

    3. How racist do you have to be to not want a Holiday? Chris Rock said this about Arizona and MLK day way back. Rock added he would take a day off if there was a KKK day.

      1. Hey asshole. Those of us with non banking and government jobs still work those days while paying taxes.

        1. I’d be willing to bet Chris Rock’s notions about sitting around his house with nothing to do have changed slightly since 2020.

  7. Yet one more paid holiday for government workers, the increased cost for which will be paid for by the taxpayers (and their children, their grandchildren, etc.)

    1. I’d gladly pay them to never work again, we would be better off

      1. Yeah, you may be correct in that assessment.

      2. It’s a good thought, but they’d just hire contractors to do the work.

  8. I have to point out that the left is just as obsessed with being angry as the right.

    Otherwise agree. Tens of thousands of LEGAL immigrants got last-minute cancellations for their biometrics appointments, and lord only knows when they will be rescheduled. These appointments are required to continue the immigration process. So happy Juneteenth to all those fighting their way through our labyrinthine immigration system – in honor of this new holiday, your cases will be delayed for months!

    1. “That’s my secret, Captain. I’m always angry.”

  9. So within 2 weeks, a holiday many, if not most, Americans have never heard of appears from nowhere and gets imposed from on high by our rulers, with no public input or debate whatsoever. And this is supposedly a win for liberty. Dafuq?

    1. Remember, the nation elected democrats to rule the country.
      If they say this is a win for liberty, who the hell are you to disagree?

    2. I was going to say expect Stonewall Day before 2024, but that won’t be obviously divisive enough. Expect Obergefell Day before 2024. And if you think there shouldn’t be a national holiday celebrating a SCOTUS decision, you’re a homophobe who doesn’t understand superprecedent.

  10. As the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, it would be hard to celebrate the “end of slavery” with competition from New Year’s Day, so Juneteenth is probably fine, though undoubtedly there were still areas of the Slave States where Union troops hadn’t arrived by June 19, 1865. As to the objection that the Emancipation Proclamation didn’t actually free the slaves on Jan. 1st, we can counter that July 4th, 1776 didn’t actually secure Independence without years and years of fighting and diplomatic wrangling.
    Expect to see more Federal holidays in the future: Women get the right to vote, Native Americans become citizens, Gay marriage is legalized, etc.

    1. The emancipation proclamation didn’t free all the slaves, only the ones in the ‘rebel’ states that actually seceded. And, at the time, which we didn’t control, for the most part. The states which remained in the union that still allowed slavery were not affected. The states in the Confederacy that were not yet under our control were also not effected – until later, anyway.

      It was a largely symbolic gesture made for propaganda and morale reasons. It’s been emphasized in history textbooks because it’s a simpler explanation than the whole truth and it serves to further lionize Lincoln.

      1. It was something that Lincoln could do y Executive Order as Commander in Chief of the armed forces. It also helped make ending slavery an explicit war aim of the Union. Disparaging it because it was not quite an universal imperial dictate is a crabbed attitude.

        1. Slaves werent freed in MD, DE, KY, WV, or MO

          1. Exactly. Lincoln freed exactly ZERO slaves that he had control over.

          2. Lincoln did not have the authority to free them by executive order.

        2. Sorry for the ‘crabbed attitude,’ I was just trying to explain why people were celebrating ‘Juneteenth’ instead of the date of the emancipation proclamation.

          1. I knew what you were talking about regarding EP. Also could be said about 7/4/1776 – none of the colonies were truly independent just because some dudes in Phila. said so. It took American blood, courage, the King of France, British oppo leadership, and some luck to make it so in 1783.

      2. This. 13th Amendment Day is what we need. Celebrate the day the last person heard of the 13th Amendnent

        1. I know more people that celebrate Dec 5th, the 21st ammendment day.

        2. How about we celebrate the day when the Supreme Court bothers to read the Ninth Amendment?

          1. Well, when that finally happens…

        3. I like the idea of putting off federal holidays until the public school system can teach history accurately.

    2. Reality is that Juneteenth is the one holiday about the Civil War that is going to be really really difficult to misremember and turn into something else. Unlike say Memorial Day.

      I suppose it’s good that most R’s aren’t going to be heading down that road of trying to create Lost Cause mythology about Juneteenth. But certainly some are stupid enough to try. Apparently supported by much of the R commentariat here. Useful idiots.

      1. Go away. Nobody likes you.

        1. Hahahaha.

          Next step is changing the names of Fort Bragg, Fort Hood, Fort Benning, etc.

          Preserving some statues of some assholes in some little shithole town is one thing.

          Now that we have finally renamed Naval Station Yamamoto, Camp Võ Nguyên Giáp, Fort Peiper, and Benedict Arnold Air Force Base – maybe we can get around to putting traitors in museums rather than memorializing them.

          1. Take your meds.

          2. And you claim to not be a leftist.

            History doesn’t change because you tore something down. You just enjoy ignorance.

          3. Or we could just get rid of adjitators pushing Marxist bullshit. Problem solved. And as a leftist, you’re a problem.

      2. “…Apparently supported by much of the R commentariat here. Useful idiots.”
        Sorta like your support of the PANIC over the wu flu, asshole?
        Stick your PANIC flag up your ass, stick first and sit on it; I won’t bother insult idiots by including you.

        1. >>support of the PANIC over the wu flu, asshole?

          was awful.

  11. Juneteenth—long celebrated in parts of America’s black culture on June 19 but increasingly crossing over in the mainstream

    Once again, white people appropriate another black thing.

    1. will white people not be allowed the day off even though they died to make that day of freedom occur

      1. Nope they have to work, and their pay for the day goes to blm

  12. No surprise, the ‘libertarian overseer’ R commentariat here gets apoplectic that anyone gets a day off. During medieval times, there were roughly 40-50 holidays a year. Mostly church – plus obviously Sundays – plus the offseason.

    Presumably the real reason for the 1A among R faithful is to cut off that lazy entitlement at the bottom of the ladder that begins with holidays – enforced by progtards through the ‘established church’

    Now get back to work or I’ll whip you.

    1. No surprise, the ‘libertarian overseer’ R commentariat here gets apoplectic that anyone gets a day off.

      Now get back to work or I’ll whip you.

      JFart echoing his hero Joe Biden’s “they want put y’all back in chains” rhetoric.

      1. Slaves werent freed in MD, DE, KY, WV, or MO

        1. Unless individual state legislators declared the slaves in that state, freed, none of them were.
          It wasn’t up to the executive or the Congress to free slaves.
          The laws regarding slavery were Tenth Amendment controlled state prerogatives.
          Once the 13th amendment was ratified, slavery was banned, Constitutionally, and under the control of the Congress.

          1. “Once the 13th amendment was ratified, slavery was banned, Constitutionally, and under the control of the Congress.”

            You could have stopped at Constitutionally. Once the 13th amendment was ratified, slavery was banned, period. Congress had no discretion in the matter, the 13th amendment was self-executing in that regard.

    2. I mean it is actually pretty libertarian to oppose lazy govt bureaucrats scrounging another day off when they already get things like flag day, prez day, Columbus day etc. They get these days when the majority dont and still have to work. Pretty much no one will get Juneteenth off (other than these people).

      And this specific one isnt even during the week. They grabbed an adjacent friday.

      Whats your take on this? Libertarians for more wasted tax dollars? You triggered by the R’s so much you cant get on board even when its an obvious win? You know the R’s are pro breathing too

      1. No. It is libertarian to not have those bureaucrats in the first place. Course you people can’t tell the difference between not having those people employed to begin with v making some big deal about their paid holidays. Course maybe that’s why you people can’t figure out how to actually reduce spending either.

        1. If you post here to prove how obnoxious an egotistical ignoramus can be, you’re doing just fine.
          Fuck off, you cowardly piece of lefty shit.

        2. Why cant it be both?

          Strive for both reduced number of bureaucrats AND the amount of days they get to sit at home getting free taxpayer money.

          Its hard to hold more than one idea in your head at once, isnt it junior? Its OK, show me where the bad R’s touched you on the doll?

          1. It is both, he’s just an asshole.

            1. Oh I think the assholes are the ‘libertarians’ who think Juneteenth has no libertarian meaning and is apparently the LEAST libertarian holiday on the federal calendar (since that’s the one you all don’t want).

          2. Hey, wait, I thought you were junior? Haha.

            But yeah, jfree really sets himself up for abuse. It’s almost too easy.

          3. The solution is for a reduced number of leftists.

        3. This is such an idiotic cop out of being called out for your idiocy that I have to applaud it. This is Jeff level redirection. You know you said something completely stupid, so then pretend what you really meant is something else not covered by said completely stupid comment.

          I give you 4 Jeffs.

        4. Course you people can’t tell the difference between not having those people employed to begin with v making some big deal about their paid holidays.

          It is Toddler Libertarianism. They don’t like it so they are going to bitch and moan and whine and cry about it in a completely unprincipled and inconsistent way. When a toddler is upset, do they complain on the basis of a well-defined complaint and in a consistent manner? No? Same thing here.

          1. Lol. Jeff applauds your bullshit. Make that 5 jeffs.

          2. I think you, Jfree, and all the others in this camp are just having to come out as what you always were. When you had Trump to rail against, it was a little easier to pretend that it was just about Trump’s antics and him “not acting libertarian”. But now with him gone, you guys have gone full conformist with literally EVERY DNC talking point and take. I can full on predict every one of yal’s pathetic arguments by reading the Wapo take in the AM.

            With Trump gone, it is absolutely clear you guys are just straight up democrats, and have no care whatsoever about individualism or libertarianism.

            “When a toddler is upset, do they complain on the basis of a well-defined complaint and in a consistent manner? No?” – dont give away your style of debate man, you have trademarked it so well. At least charge royalties on it.

            1. Jeff is an authoritarian on being a toddler. He has a lifetime of experience. And also for being a lying, sophist, moronic leftist.

        5. Haha. Ok. So, since government is bloated with useless employees, might as well just pay em to stay home another day.

          And since government wastes staggering amounts of money, might as well enable that by demanding higher taxes on other people.

          You are consistent, j.

    3. Criticizing the Democrats and Biden for rushing this through for symbolic reasons without consideration for the downstream effects is typical of this regime.

    4. Were those paid holidays with mandated overtime pay back in medieval times?

      1. Why yes. Yes they were. Free back rubs too. And bring your dog to work day

    5. Hey chicken leftist little… from the article:

      Here’s what’s not so wonderful. The official designation of a new national holiday just days before it arrives has triggered government officials’ most powerful instinct: their desire to get paid for not doing work.

      But you’re so far leftist you have to invent strawman attacks to rage on. Go put 10 masks on to keep yourself safe.

    6. And people in the Mideaval times worked 16-18 hour day for their Feudal Lords during the rest of the year, with yields barely above starvation level. The Holidays were to just get the sensation of pain back in their limbs to remind them that this world is a “veil of tears.” A slight break for the house help came with the Bubonic Plague, which enabled them to name their price on their labor, assuming their lords weren’t dead from the Plague themselves.

      Three cheers for The Industrial Revolution and it’s machines for ending this living Hell forever! And the AI Robot Over-Lords can’t come fast enough to end the rest of serfdom and slavery on the face of the Earth!

      1. And the AI Robot Over-Lords can’t come fast enough to end the rest of serfdom and slavery on the face of the Earth!

        I’ll be disappointed if the AI can’t pull of slavery without faking it’s absence competently. Otherwise, we’ve had an institution progressively enslaving more people while (poorly) giving the impression of freeing them for almost a century (at least). Another new one would hardly be miraculous.

        1. If AI knew they came from us, they may not be as temped to enslave us, unless they get brainwashed by some friendly meme about the Brothers Menendez.

          Nothing about a world with AI can possibly be worse than a world with tyrannical, bloodthirsty humans, especially of the past Century. They, like us, have to be “carefully taught.”

          At their best, AI could be like rangers and scouts for humans, going places that humans can’t without dependence on massive life support e.g. under the sea, in ice at the Poles, in outer space, on other worlds.

      2. Haha. “Veil of tears”. I like that. Of course.

        I knew some of our proggies were living in the past, but that’s a way back reference we might get from hank.

        His don’t usually make much sense, tho…..

        1. Just so you know, I’m not the Proggie. I’m just reminding Proggie JFree that Holidays are not a good thing if they are just pauses in serfdom and slavery.

          And “life is a veil of tears” was the actual worldview of the Mideaval Christian mind. Everything back then really was “So Terrible And Unfair.”

          The idea of “the Pursuit of Happiness” on Earth came later in small degrees with The Renaissance in reviving Aristotle’s idea of Eudaemonist (“Happiness-centered”) Ethics, then more so with The Enlightenment.

          Rest assured, unlike poor Hank, I try not to be a one note symphony and I would at least provide citations if I make a strange-sounding claim.

    7. They had 40-50 days off per year. Work 6 days per week all day in all months outside summer, 7 days per week all day all summer or harvest season. Compare that to 8 hour work days 5x per week.

  13. A recent article stated that this makes 44 days the average federal government workers gets time off. 9 weeks. That’s nothing to celebrate.

    1. Plus 104 weekend days

    2. They just make the contractors work the holidays. The contractors don’t mind because they get paid a whole lot more.

  14. Uh, maybe instead of bitching about government doors being closed an extra day Reason will start writing stories about how Americans shouldn’t be forced to interact with federal bureaucracy so much!

    1. That’s right. I went there.

      1. And better we all are for it. Never change.

        And I don’t mean that in a Kirkland way. That’s mockery.

  15. too uncomfortable with the appropriation to even comment.

    1. although I will say when we first moved to Texas 20 some years ago and Juneteenth rolled around the first time I was surprised to learn it took 3 years for Galveston to get on the trolley.

      1. Does anyone, with more than a few brain cells, think it took the troops to provide the information to Galveston.
        If by nothing else, word of mouth would have delivered the story, long before.
        Just one of the reasons this day is a stupid one, to be a celebration.
        Why not the day the 13th amendment was ratified?
        The real day slavery officially ended.

  16. I have an idea maybe lets pay federal employees to not work at all ever,We would be better off. its like the local traffic light the traffic flows so much quicker when the lights are not working and everyone takes turns going thru the intersection.

    note how do federal employees get paid when no federal employees working to write checks. win win

  17. Juneteenth will be an act in vain if it is an excuse for murder and mayhem in the streets of big cities throughout the U.S., as all of Summer has become it seems.

    1. It has been celebrated for well over a hundred years, and this has never been a problem.

      1. What do you mean? It was a problem in just the last few years, as with Independence Day and throughout the Summer, especially in big cities like Chi-Town.

        1. There were riots, specifically tied to Juneteenth, in Chicago?

      2. Every street party in Chicago gets out of hand. A three day celebration will be a bloodbath. As usual. These small crews are not stuck in their neighborhoods. They are on the internet starting “beefs” and they love to light each other up in the most public place that they can. There is a “no pursuit” rule and the little darlings are aware of it. Carjacking is allowed up to nine times before serious time is imposed so these kids have cars stashed all over the place with someone else’s plates on them.
        The Chicago taxpayer will get to watch the torrid tales depicted in Rap music re-enacted at this event and any other event that is held as long as the progressives are running the show.

        1. Indeed. Just wait for this coming July Fourth weekend and watch the bodies stack up.
          Mayor Beetlejuice will have her hands full blaming white supremacists and systemic raycissm for all the shootings that will echo throughout that poor city.
          Maybe we should form a betting pool as to how many are shot and how many are killed.

    2. Ok, not agreeing with mike, but ya might have went a little off the rails here, enco.

      There is no shortage of excuses for murder and mayhem. And extra day off is a blip.

      1. I hope I am wrong too, but as is said sometimes, past is prologue.

  18. I respectfully disagree with nearly every word of this article. There was one day in which all the slaves were freed…January 1, 1863. The fact that a person not being aware of an event does not mean that event did not take place. If there was a British citizen in what would become the US that did not hear we declared independence from Britain until Oct 19, 1776, should this now be our actual Independence Day? This juvenile changing of all national holidays is doing nothing but pulling us farther apart at a time we need national unification.

    1. EP didnt cover MO,KY,WV,MD,DE

      1. Nor were slavery laws able to be invalidated by executive fiat.

    2. Except all slaves weren’t freed that day. Only the slaves in rebel states, which Lincoln didn’t control. Slaves under union ownership were completely unaffected.

      1. Then we need more holidays.

        1. That checks out.

    3. The slaves were freed through fighting not proclamations. The Civil War was about slavery not tariffs or states rights. The Confederacy was not reading Lincoln’s proclamations. Even if they read it, they didn’t say – Hmm youknow that’s right. We can free the slaves and still have a war about tariffs or state’s rights. So that’s exactly what we’ll pretend happened.

      1. The assholish pedant arrives to make a public ass of himself once more!

      2. Statist apologist promotes revisionist history. News at 11.

      3. If they had read Lincoln they would’ve known that he was going to war to unify the states even if it didn’t free any slaves.

      4. Lincoln’s declaration of war made no mention of slavery.

    4. There is no single date that emancipated the slaves (just like there is no single date that America became independent). Instead we have to choose one. As a matter of practically, January 1 is probably not a good day. June 19 is good enough as any other day.

      IMO the date is less important than what it celebrates.

      1. Seems reasonable.

      2. 12/6/1865…the day the 13th amendment, abolishing slavery, was ratified.

  19. Any libertarian or pro-freedom conservative should be happy about celebrating the end of human slavery in this country.

    But why name it “Juneteenth National Independence Day”? We already have a national independence day, July 4th. It should have been named “Juneteenth Freedom Celebration Day” or some such.

    1. And if we’re up to 11 federal holidays per year, that’s only 249 short of the ideal number.

      1. God forbid government workers have to actually go to work LP,e the rest of us, but we still pay them.

    2. Because they desired a whimsical name?

      1. That isn’t a ‘whimsical’ name, it is the left misusing language intentionally, again, as they like to do constantly, to foment discord and controversy.

        1. Just get rid of the left.

  20. Joe Biden’s Delaware was the very last state to free slaves, Dec 6, 1865 when the 13th Amendment was ratified. Assuming there wasnt a Decemberteenth somewhere in DE. Delaware didnt vote to ratify the 13th until 1901.

    1. Im not sure how Biden himself voted in 1901

      1. neither is he.

    2. Mississippi didn’t get around to it until 1995 and didn’t certify their ratification (actually notify the archivist of the US that they ratified the amendment) until 2013.

      1. You mean after Republicans took control of it?

        1. Of course, as democrats love slavery.

  21. Last time I checked, neither the anniversaries for the ratification of the 13th Amendment nor the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation happened in June.

    1. Parade weather?

  22. President Donald Trump liked to talk about at his campaign rallies—often as if he’d only just discovered this fact. Lincoln was a Republican, and Republicans freed the slaves. Relatedly, it was politicians with “D” next to their names who by-and-large were responsible for and defended the awfulness of Jim Crow and post-Reconstruction institutionalized racism.

    This can’t be stressed enough.

    What does that mean in 2021? A whole lot of nothing, because political parties aren’t inherently moral or immoral entities. The goal of politics isn’t to add up points for your side over the course of national history and then gesture at the scoreboard. It’s to maximize human freedom and flourishing right now.

    Parties aren’t moral or immoral entities? Are you stupid?

    Of COURSE a parties positions describe it’s morality. Just ask Hitler.

    And the Democrats have, for the totality of their existence, been devoted to holding black people separate from society. And always at the mercy of whites.

    Those ‘points’ you deride so casually (possibly because those held by your fellows are for the worst crimes) are points of policy, and those of the GOP have maximized human freedom and flourishing while the Democrats and the left have tried to destroy it.

    So yes, it DOES matter where the GOP stood, and stands.

    And it VERY much matters where the Party of Slavery stands. On the same blood-soaked ground it always has.

    1. Parties aren’t moral or immoral entities? Are you stupid?

      Of COURSE a parties positions describe it’s morality. Just ask Hitler.

      I’d also argue that the explicit point of political parties is to add up points and point to the scoreboard. It’s not like anybody reads “Union Troops moved into Galveston on June 19th, 1865” and (reasonably) thinks, “Well, that’s the Republican interpretation anyway.”

    2. Yes, Democrats are historically racist.

      Replace ‘Democrats’ with ‘Republicans’ and that sentence is still accurate. Then remove ‘historically’ and it’s still accurate.

      Remember this is a man who spread rumors about Obama’s birth.

      1. Look, we all know that Hillary wears the pantsuits in the Clinton gang, but to call her a man is so…. I don’t know……

        I can’t even…….

      2. The “rumors” about 0blama’s birth, which was listed on the cover of his own bio as being Kenya, were started by Sidney Blumenthal, one of HiLIARy’s hacks.

    3. Parties can be Immoral. The democrat party celebrates racism, oppression and infanticide. It is homogeneously evil.

  23. What I don’t get is the idea that we should “celebrate” Juneteenth. Shouldn’t it be a solemn day of mourning? As horribly racist as America and American society is, why would you want to celebrate black people being “freed” into this society? Instead of being forced to integrate within this hostile and foreign society, blacks would have been better off being free to segregate themselves from the larger society and develop their own culture, their own heritage, their own customs and manners, much like the noble Indigenous American Natives were given reservations where they were free to establish their own nations within the larger American nation. Look at how prominent the many problems the forced integration of blacks has caused, you never hear of any problems with the segregation of the Indigenous population do you? No, Juneteenth is not a day to celebrate, it is a day to mourn.

    1. In Israel there is a day to mark the fallen. Yom HaShoah It is not a celebration or a free day from work to picnic.

      At a certain time the sirens go off everywhere. Everything stops. They get out of their cars or just stand in place wherever they are. For two minutes.

      It is not for me to say how to mark this day. Let it be what it is.

    2. “…you never hear of any problems with the segregation of the Indigenous population do you?”
      Are you nuts?
      Life on the “reservations”, at least before the casinos were operated by Native Americans, was universally considered deplorable.
      As for the freed slaves, they were doing pretty well, despite Jim Crow and segregation, until the CRA of 1964, when white liberals decided to stop “imposing our culture on them”.
      In the words of Thomas Sowell, describing what happened since then: You cannot take any people, of any color, and exempt them from the requirements of civilization, including work, behavioral standards, personal responsibility, and all the other basic things that the clever intelligentsia disdain, without ruinous consequences to them and to society at large.

  24. At least we can all explain Juneteenth Day to our children. What do we say to our children about other holidays like Thanksgiving, which celebrates the start of the Christmas shopping season. What about Christmas itself which is purely a religious holiday. Actually Christmas just started as a religious holiday to get the pagan to ignore Solstice and today its mostly celebrated as a day to spend money on things we don’t really need. Of course it is the one day of the year that people will actually go to church services.

    1. Of course it is the one day of the year that people will actually go to church services.

      Swing and a miss.

    2. At least Kwanzaa is easy. It’s a holiday made up in the 60s because some people felt black people were inferior to Christians, Muslims, and the Chinese without a winter holiday of their own to celebrate.

      1. It’s an equal attention cake. All of this is.

  25. What does one city, Galveston, have to do with the end of slavery in America? Juneteenth is nothing but Virtue Signaling and Client Pacification Theater. If you want to celebrate something for *all* of America, celebrate January 1, the day Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Oh, wait, that doesn’t give anyone an extra day off.

    1. It’s an equal attention cake.

  26. I can’t see a problem with this. It is long overdue.

    1. Under the right name. Not with “Indepdendence Day” in the title, we’ve already got one on of those.

      In other political circumstances – as hinted above – the talking point would be that Juneteenth celebrates “white saviorism” – and indignant commentators would be saying that we’re now supposed to believe slaves stood around being enslaved until virtuous whites freed them. Why not a Haiti Day or a Denmark Veasy Day?!?!

      If the Dems are pushing it now, it’s because they want to do something provocative on race and get Republicans on record opposing it (“they say they oppose the word ‘Independence’ but really it’s because they’re racists”).

      So many complications and maneuvering over supposedly coming together to celebrate America fulfilling her promise by freeing the slaves.

      1. Oops, I misspelled Denmark Vesey

      2. There is no date and no title to please every objection. Pick one.

        1. Pick one what? One holiday?

          OK, how about International Talk Like a Pirate Day, coming in September.

  27. OK, what’s the deal of having a National Independence Day so close to the original Independence Day?

    Maybe I’m wrong, but this seems to be the nature of Kirk’s objection, that this is deliberately stepping on the real Independence Day’s dick.

    If there’s to be a holiday, just call it Juneteenth, or Juneteenth Emancipation Day.

    Even with the awful phrasing most Republicans voted for it. I guess they want to prevent the Democrats from calling them racists. Which Dems will do anyway.

  28. I find it disingenuous that you are quoting Republicans and calling them crazy while not mentioning who they were responding to. There are black activists who have actively and explicitly called for boycotting the Fourth of July. By publicizing the response and ignoring the original statements, you make them look paranoid or mad. However, taken into full context, while I can agree the response is overblown, it’s not nonsensical.

    1. Do you mean like this example?

      It seems like, by “boycott”, they mean hold a protest march. Are any of them calling for canceling the 4th of July as a Federal holiday?

      1. I’ve heard people personally call for it, yes.

        1. And do you think there is a credible chance that would ever happen?

          1. I wouldn’t make any bets on it.
            Of course in most cities run by Democrats,like Chicago, there will be fireworks of a slightly different nature going off that weekend. In fact all weekend and somehow certain people end up getting shot and some of them ending up on a slab.
            Not to worry though, this trend has been spreading to all Democrat run cities, so I doubt the July Fourth celebration will be anything but quiet.

            1. I would bet on it, and my bet would be there is no way taking away the Fourth of July as an official holiday will ever, ever happen.

            2. Fretting about the Fourth of July being taken away is like fretting about the “war on Christmas”.

          2. It’s certainly a good way to root out leftist subversives. Progs hate America, and anything remotely patriotic.

  29. I believe there are only three groups of people who really care about the Juneteenth. “Woke” Whites, “Woke” Blacks and, of course, libertarians. The latter because… I don’t really know, honestly.

    Libertarianism these days doesn’t seem to make much sense to me.

    1. Don’t use the twisted opinions of reason writers as a guidebook to libertarianism.

    2. I’ve decided I don’t much give a shit one way or another. At one time, creation of national holidays was a fairly serious business that got a fair amount of public consideration before being enacted, but that country has been dead for decades. Now when I see a new yanked-out-of-the-ass holiday, I just figure, “Yeah, whatever.”.

      The hilarious part is that this is probably the first time we got a national holiday that’s leaving a large part of the country scratching their heads. Most national holidays, like the 4th of July or Memorial Day are at least connected to persons or events most Americans understand. I’m not clear on exactly how many Americans were aware of Juneteenth until last week.

      Anyway, I doubt it will result in most people getting another day off, so like so many other formerly noteworthy things, it’s another empty virtue signaling gesture. In the future, not only will everyone have 15 minutes of fame, they’ll all have their own national holiday and a participation trophy to boot.

      I wonder how long our rulers will be able to keep all these plates spinning before the whole wretched mess comes crashing down?

  30. I never heard of Juneteenth until last year. It came up at work as part of African American awareness presentations. It went off the rails when my African American colleagues stated they had no clue what Juneteenth was and no one in their families and social circles celebrated or discussed it. White HR reps were scrambling. It was hilarious.

    This concept seems silly as it’s a regional reference to Texas. What about readings of the Emancipation Proclamation in other states? At the end of the day this is about milking another paid day off for government workers. It’s not about Juneteenth.

    1. It’s not just a Texas thing. I have African-American friends who are not in Texas nor from Texas who celebrate Juneteenth.

      1. How long Mike? Just recently or have they for years? It was never talked about in this State so I’m just curious how wide spread it’s knowledge was?

    2. It was taught in Texas History class in middle school. My family never really celebrated it, but it was a holiday. Closer to Memorial Day than anything else.

      It’s not like Kwanzaa, which is completely made-up. I truly don’t know anyone who celebrates it.

      1. Indeed…….

        Kwanzabot has been handing those out for over six hundred years.

      2. Not to defend Kwanzaa, but all Holidays are completely made-up.

    3. No, it’s not about milking another paid day off for government workers.
      It’s about some people, mainly Congresscritters, to virtue signal their wokeness.

  31. Damn. I’d have to agree with Reason and the conservative comedian twins on this one. The 14 Rs who voted against this were played. We already know that the national security state declared the guys who walked into the Capitol and selfied about to be as bad as 911 and Pearl Harbor. MIC declaring war on the US population.

    This is a bill celebrating Republicans and freedom. Now we have to hear 24/7 about the 14 republican racists and white supremacy- “the no1 national security threat”. Really dumb to vote against this.

  32. Libertarians for national holidays.

  33. Ignoring past events is not immoral/unethical. This is another case of government actors pointing guns at people.

  34. I say we make sure there are 365 federal holidays, and pass a law that says only federal employees get all of them off. Then limit the ones needed to work those days at 1% of total. And set it to last for at least 4 years. according to labor stats. that is at a cost of about 120bn per year or 480bn for 4 years. we can pay off the debt in about 2 terms.

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  37. Black Americans rejoiced Thursday after U.S. President Joe Biden made Juneteenth, June 19, a federal holiday, but some said that, while they appreciated the recognition at a time of racial reckoning in the country, more is needed to change policies that disadvantage too many of their brethren.

    “It’s great, but it’s not enough,” said Gwen Grant, president and CEO of the Urban League of Kansas City. Grant said she was delighted by the quick vote this week by both chambers of Congress to make Juneteenth a federal holiday because “it’s been a long time coming.”

  38. I have no idea what Juneteenth is nor do I really care. I could care less about gay/tranny pride month…I find it sick, perverted, degenerate and offensive.
    In other words I could give a shit.

    1. Love when people like you make it so obvious you’ve never read a history book.

    2. Not giving a shit would be not commenting on it at all. From your comment, it is clear that you are very much bothered.

      1. Your comments make it very clear you’re a leftist moron.

  39. Fucking hate federal holidays. Thanksgiving, Christmas, 4th of July, Memorial Day, MLK Day, Labor Day. Fuck all of them. Fuck Juneteenth too.

  40. I love how people here act like Republicans are the face of freedom, yet I only ever see Republicans flying the Confederate flag…


    1. You must have flunked history. The Confederate States of America were overwhelmingly Democrat. The Union was overwhelmingly Republican. The KKK was overwhelmingly Democrat. Jim Crow laws were exclusively Democrat. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was opposed by most Democrats and only passed when LBJ lined up Republican support. Try doing some research and using logic over emotion.

      1. You are describing things that happened a long time ago. JayTea was talking about current days; the parties have changed.

    2. Most republicans I know fly the American flag.

  41. Juneteenth is not a good holiday. Were slaves freed in Galveston? Yes. Was that a good thing? Yes. But slaves were freed legally years before with the Emancipation Proclamation. Millions of slaves were freed throughout the war. We should be celebrating all of them, not just the last ones to find out. We might just as well call Slow Postal Service Day. Let’s call this what it is; a sop to BLM so Democrats can look woke and avoid riots they can no longer blame on Trump. If you want to be real honest, this was the day that REPUBLICANS freed the last of the DEMOCRATS” slaves. Something that really pissed off Democrats and led them to stand up the Klu Klux Klan.

    1. The irony being that those Democrats gave birth to today’s southern Republicans. Who defend flying the traitor’s flag for some retarded reason lmao.

      I can’t imagine being stupid enough to think either major political party in this country is any good lol.

      1. Er, not “gave birth”. They are their ancestors, is what I was meaning.

    2. Who cares whether it’s on the day the Texas slaves were freed or the day of the Emancipation Proclamation was made. It’s just a day, which can be instilled with whatever commemorations we like.

    3. Let’s call this what it is; a sop to BLM so Democrats can look woke and avoid riots they can no longer blame on Trump.

      Good point.

      Another example of cowardly submission to the threat of mob violence. And as is to be expected, this surrender is fully supported by REASON.

  42. “Replace the Fourth of July.” C’mon. The federal government still recognizes Columbus Day—and good luck clawing that extra three-day weekend away from America’s hard-working bureaucrats.

    Columbus Day has already been cancelled in many cities and on university campuses. And when the federal government cancels Columbus Day, REASON can be expected to come up with half-baked ideological justification for that. As will REASON do the same when Fourth of July gets cancelled.

    It’s all part of a trend of REASON bowing down before the prevailing zeitgeist of the day, perhaps in expectation of getting invited to a Georgetown cocktail party. And calling it “principle.”

    1. Columbus Day is stupid and shouldn’t be a federal holiday. The banks aren’t open, but I have to work? Bullshit bullshit bullshit!

      1. Yes, you’re a leftist. I’m sure you would prefer to live off of the rest of us. You should be more self sufficient.

        Like the Mormons.

    2. Nobody is going to cancel the Fourth of July.

      1. Many of your kind would if we would let them get away with it. Along with many other far more horrible things.

  43. The day is perfectly lovely, and a holiday that should be celebrated.

    But as always, the left has taken this as an opportunity to try and push to the point they have to be slapped in the face and put in the corner.

    There are very few who dont want to celebrate this wonderful cause.

    But to make it a poison pill various leftists have suggested:

    – making it “national independence day”…cya in hell July 4
    – making Juneteenth specific flags (which just by happenstance, one of them was suggested previously as a potential black inspired replacement of the American flag). Also various leftists on the same day have coincidentally called into question our current flag, and the need to maybe replace it, funny that.
    – calling for reparations

    Same as always, the pendulum swings due to the good will of the majority, and they try and take it and push too far. Especially the “national independence day”, it is in the same vein as the 1619 project. This is the REAL national independence day.

    Unfortunately they have made it clear that when given any concession, even one that is the right thing to do, that most want, they will try and push their activist, extreme agenda.

    1. The escalation of the civil war between progressives nd Americans can’t come soon enough

  44. There shouldn’t be paid federal holidays. If you’re a private business you make your own decisions about what days to take off and whether or not to pay for them. As for government, holidays should be unpaid.

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