Happy Juneteenth everyone!
[QUICK HISTORY LESSON] On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas to emancipate enslaved Africans.. make note that this was TWO YEARS after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed (January 1, 1863). Major General Gordon Granger led Union troops across Texas to deliver the news and "free" people on plantations. There are tons of stories floating around about why it took two years to get the news to Texas- the most popular explanation involves a murder and the government purposely withholding information. Big surprise.
Whatever the truth is, June 19th is now celebrated as the day that slaves "gained their freedom" across this country. This was just one major event in the sorted history of Black people in America. Specifically, Black women. By 1865, there were already generations of slaves in the United States. A century later, many Black families are still dealing with the trauma of our ancestors. Believe it or not, the psychological toll of slavery has weighed down on Black Americans for more than 200 years.
Of all of the stereotypes of Black women that have come and gone since 1865, one seems to stick around- the angry Black woman. We're always mad, always scowling and never pleasant- according to the stereotype. I'm not sure of the exact moment when every decided that we were mad "for no reason' but I've been hearing it since the mid 90's (as a child). In high school, I didn't get the loud, mean Black woman in movies. I college, I damn near turned into that loud, mean Black woman, and now as a young adult I'm learning to sympathize with women who are labeled "angry". Honestly, Black women have a right to be angry- but that's a story for another day. This post is actually about the amazing vibes and sense of community that I feel around other Black women.
For Memorial Day, my friend and manager hosted an amazing pool party in Los Angeles. The entire weekend was filled with good drinks, amazing food and Black Girl Magic.
Do those Black women look angry to you? For five days, we cooked together, drank together, and laughed together.
The last photos are super bright, but you get the picture- it was a good time! No arguments, no drinks thrown, no drama. Black women aren't angry- we're passionate (word to Amanda Seales).