Colorado Democratic Party Statement on Juneteenth
Denver, CO — Colorado Democratic Party Chair Morgan Carroll and Executive Director Halisi Vinson released the following statement on the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth:
“George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Ahmaud Arbery. Eric Garner. De’Von Bailey. Elijah McClain. These are just a handful of the lives senselessly taken by systemic racism and white supremacy here in Colorado and across our country. But the painful reality is that these are names we know because someone managed to either record it or it was reported on. At least three men have been literally lynched, hanging from trees, since the murder of Floyd; and the police assumed they were suicides…men, hanging from trees in public spaces.
“On this, the 155th anniversary of the day when Black Americans in Texas found out that they were finally freed from the shackles of slavery, we still as a country grapple with the struggle for true equity for people of color. It is encouraging that many of us have collectively looked in the mirror and have come to terms with the harsh reality that the promise of the American Dream has been shattered by the scourge of American apartheid. Black communities still haven’t recovered from every subsequent attack on their lives since the first Juneteenth. Whether it’s Jim Crow, the Tulsa Massacre, or the countless men and women denied the loan, denied the job, or even worse, killed by police; our country still struggles with the spectre of white supremacy that pushes our country to view Black lives as anything but lesser than.
“Black lives matter. Until every one of us in this country understands what this truly means, the fight for racial equity will not be over. We are extremely proud of the elected Democrats in Colorado who have not only listened to the protesters who have been marching for weeks now, but that they have taken nationwide-leading action to address systemic racism in our justice system. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. We as the Democratic Party cannot rest until we as a country adopt anti-racism in every facet of our lives and our laws, so that the promise of the American Dream is no longer deferred for people of color. It will be a long, difficult, and uncomfortable road, but for Black, Indigenous, and other people of color who have faced hundreds of years of oppression, guaranteeing equal treatment under the law, and truly equal opportunity to pursue the American Dream, is the least we can do as a country.