Juneteenth has always been a celebration of freedom but today it must also be a celebration of leadership. When Republican Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 he displayed courageous leadership in freeing American slaves and restoring true liberty for all in America. And while the country was bitterly divided over the issue of equality for all mankind, Lincoln reminded the world that freedom was endowed by our creator and not by man. Still, in Texas it would take another two years and another courageous leader, General Gordon Granger, to bring this news to Galveston, Texas.
As an African-American, when I think about Juneteenth, I remember the past, but think more and more about the future of our country. I remember my grandfather, who emphasized Juneteenth over all other summer holidays. I remember his stories about the emancipation of African-Americans and how after emancipation the quest for true freedom through opportunity would begin.
With each generation, it is harder and harder to understand the significance of this special day. It is our duty, however, to keep these old stories of struggle alive so that future generations will remember the value of freedom and recognize threats to it. Because Freedom is not white, black or Hispanic. Freedom is a gift from God to all Americans, and it is our responsibility to preserve it.
As Ronald Reagan so prophetically said, “freedom is not passed through the bloodstream.” We owe it to our children to share these stories and let the truth be known about our values and which leaders have always been on the side of courage, truth and freedom.
History shows us that Republicans have always been on the side of freedom for all Americans, whether it was standing up for emancipation in 1865, standing up for the unborn, or standing up to preserve the liberties threatened by the growth of government power today. Never has liberty been more threatened today, and we need strong leaders in the mode of Abraham, Lincoln and Ronald Regan today. That’s why I’m standing behind Ted Cruz. We need strong leaders like Ted, who will stand and fight the radical Obama agenda. Liberty isn’t just something you go to Washington to vote for. It’s something you go to Washington to fight for.