Slavery is America’s original sin, says Biden
Regional / World
June 21, 2024

Slavery is America’s original sin, says Biden

by Renwick Rose

The President of the United States of America three years ago officially proclaimed June 19, popularly known as “Juneteenth”, as a Federal Holiday in that country.

The proclamation was signed into law by US President, Joe Biden. June 19, 1865, marked the official end of slavery in the USA though slave-like practices continued to be carried out for another two centuries, particularly in the south of that country.

President Biden has now proclaimed the Day a Day of Observance, describing slavery as America’s “original sin” and calling for Americans to work together to get rid of systemic racism. The following is taken from the official proclamation:
“On June 19, 1865, freedom finally came for the 250,000 enslaved people of Texas. That day, which has become known as Juneteenth, the Army arrived to enforce what had already been the law of the land for two and a half years – the Emancipation Proclamation.

“Today, we recognize that Juneteenth not only marked the end of America’s original sin of slavery but also the beginning of the work at the heart and soul of our Nation and making the promise of America real for every American.

“One of my proudest moments as President was signing into law Juneteenth as a new Federal holiday- the first Federal Holiday to be established since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day four decades prior. Juneteenth is an acknowledgement of the truth of our Nation’s history. It is about realizing the idea that America was founded on: All people are created equal and deserved to be treated equally through their lives. It is about the generation of brave black leaders and selfless activists who never let us walk away from that idea…

“Now Therefore, I, Joseph R. Biden Jr, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the USA, do hereby proclaim June 19, 2024, as Juneteenth Day of Observance.

“I call upon the people of the USA to acknowledge and condemn the history of slavery in our nation and to recognize how the impact of the original sin remains. I call on every American to celebrate Juneteenth and recommit to working together to eradicate systemic racism and inequality in our society.”