JUNETEENTH – By Sundiata Acoli, 7/8/11

Sundiata Acoli, 7/8/11


The Juneteenth Celebration was put on by the younger Bros at FCI Otisville so that they might gain experience and improve their skills. They designed a program format in which anyone could  stand and speak on any topic they desired and afterwards stand ready to answer questions about it from the audience.

Black Warrior opened the event with a brief history  that Juneteenth was a holiday created by Blacks to celebrate the end of their and all chattel enslavement in the u.s. It dates from the June 19, 1865, announcement by Gen. Gordon Granger following his landing at Galveston TX, that the Civil War had ended and that the enslaved were now free. This was 2 1/2 years after President Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation of Jan. 1st, 1863 (which was ignored by the slave owners still at war) and about 2 1/2 months after Lee’s surrender on April 9th, 1865 which ended the Civil War.

The Emancipation Proclamation had declared slaves free in Confederate states still in rebellion but there were not enough Union forces in those states to enforce the declaration. With the arrival of Gen. Gordon and his regiment at Galveston the Union Army  had enough forces on the ground in Texas to enforce Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and Granger’s General Order No. 3 that the enslaved were indeed free. Since then Juneteenth is looked upon as Black Independence Day by many in Texas and the states to which it spread.

Black Warrior also explained among other things that he had never heard of Juneteenth until a couple of  years ago and he made the point that that’s why it’s important that we hold events like this in order to educate ourselves and others concerned.

Righteous Born followed with an oration on why Black people should stop using the word “nigga” and then threw the floor open for volunteer speakers from the audience.

Ra’uf Abdullah took the floor and and read four of his poems: (1) Unity (printed below), (2) History, (3) Skag and (4) Convict.

Heru acknowledged the Ancestors and poured libations in their honor.

Abdullah Muhammad spoke on the topic of “There Is No Mystery God.”

Broadway Cole spoke on “The Enemy Is Self.”

And Redemption held the audience enraptured with his speech on “Sine Dine” and it’s application to the u.s. Constitution ,the dissolution of the Union on March 9th, 1860 and President Lincoln declaring himself Commander n Chief.

Time expired and that ended the Event.

A condition of harmony,
The quality or
State of being made one.
Its true essence:
“One for all; and all for one!”

Is something which has to be nurtured:
“In order to bring about true Unity,
Everyone has to put forth an effort!”

With Unity you form a union:
An act or instance of Uniting,
Which is a unified condition.”

With Unity you become like family,
You become Brothers.

With true Unity:
“You become a Brotherhood”

You have many forms of:
Such as the Mafia,
La Cosa Nostra!”

When we break Brotherhood down,
We know that a Brother:
“Is one of the male members of a family!”
We know that a Hood:
“Is a protective covering!”
Like a Hood on a coat:
Protects your head from the elements!
Or the Hood on a car:
“It protects the vital parts of a car from the elements!”

None of us are true Brothers:
“Until you want for your Brother,
That which you want for yourself!”

In order to  establish a strong Brotherhood:
“You must have sincere love,
For one another!”
You must develope:
“A closeness,
That no out-sider can penetrate!”

If your Brother had a bowl of soup:
“Half of it,
Was Yours!”

In closing:
“You are supposed to be so close,
That you can hear each other breathing!”

You must be so close”
“That if one of you have a tooth ache,
You all go  get your tooth pulled!”

(c) Ra’uf Abdullah
(aka William Christian) 7/13/06

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