Juneteeth and whitewashing
According to a 2019 Washington Post poll, most Americans know very little about slavery.
The annual commemoration of Juneteenth therefore represents a significant moment of celebration among Black communities across the nation — and a significant opportunity for members of the broader public to acknowledge the painful history of enslavement. From the 17th to the 19th century, an estimated several hundred thousand African captives were transported to the territory that what would become the United States. At the start of the Civil War in 1861, there were four million enslaved Black people — an estimated 250, 000 of them resided in Texas.
The Latta Plantation’s event, which has since been canceled after the public outcry, flies in the face of this history. It attempted to downplay the experiences of enslaved people and even garner sympathy for slaveholders and defenders of the Confederate States of America. Such attempts to miseducate the public about slavery are appalling on any day — but especially on Juneteenth.
WATCH AND LISTEN: Opinion | This is what whitewashing slavery in the South looks like