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Freedom Center statement on Juneteenth as national holiday

Yesterday, in a unanimous vote, the United States Senate voted to recognize Juneteenth as a national holiday. Juneteenth is a date that rightly deserves its prominent place in the pantheon of American history and is instrumental in telling the full and true story of our nation. We applaud our leaders for their recognition of this historic date and the fulfillment of freedom it embodies.

I hope our leaders in the House of Representatives, too, recognize the significance of this date. I hope our fellow Americans challenge themselves to learn about Juneteenth and to hear the voices of all those who built this nation. I hope we all rededicate ourselves to those principles upon which this nation was founded – life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness – so they can be enjoyed by all Americans. It is a promise we have long fallen short of fulfilling, but it is a noble and righteous cause we must all continue to pursue.

I thank our leaders for taking this momentous step to immortalize the date of June 19, 1865, and all it symbolizes to this nation. Now, I ask each of us to finish the work started on that day as we ensure that, without condition, America truly is the land of the free.

Woodrow Keown, Jr.
President & COO
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center


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