June 19 is now officially Juneteenth National Independence Day, a US federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.
- The day’s name is a blending of the words June and nineteenth.
- It commemorates June 19, 1865: the day that Union Army Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger rode into Galveston, Texas, and told slaves of their emancipation. That day came more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. Even after Lincoln declared all enslaved people free on paper, that hadn’t necessarily been the case in practice.
- Juneteenth is also known as Emancipation Day. People across the country celebrate with food and festivities, much like the Fourth of July.
- All but one state, as well as the District of Columbia, recognize the milestone of Black liberation in some shape or form. For example, some companies honor the occasion by giving their employees the day off.
- Despite being celebrated since 1865, it was only until 1980 that Texas became the first state to make Juneteenth a state holiday.
- With Biden’s signature, Juneteenth is the first holiday to be approved since Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which was established in 1983.
Celebrating freedom – Who is included and Who is excluded?
Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, originated June 19, 1865 to recognize the day the remaining enslaved African Americans in the Confederacy were made aware of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation more than two years prior. This occurred in Texas—the most remote of the Confederate states—when Union troops arrived in Galveston Bay and read federal orders declaring that all enslaved people were free. Once a mostly regional observance, Juneteenth has in recent decades become a much broader celebration of African American freedom. This year in particular, it’s seen as a way to express support for the African American and Black community during a time of widespread protests against systemic racism and police brutality.
However, in my view, the issue of Freedom, Emancipation, and Slavery cannot be discussed strictly in the context of the lifetime experience of African Americans. It must be discussed keeping in view of the man created by LORD God Creator without concern for the human identity in terms of nationality, race, and ethnicity. In my analysis, the US has institutionalized the practice of Slavery.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – A SLAVE DRIVER:
This article is updated in response to “The Notice of Slavery Award,” Date. August 16, 2014, sent by the US Social Security Administration (SSA), Great Lakes Program Service Center-Harold Washington Social Security Center approving the Claim for Old Age (66-Years and more) Retirement Income Benefits at a monthly rate of $1347.80. After duly approving the Retirement Income Benefit, SSA without any regard for the US Labor Laws, informs that the Department cannot and will not pay the Retirement Benefit in view of the applicant’s citizenship status. The Decision given by SSA is coercing the senior alien to continue his labor to earn hourly wages to simply maintain his marginal existence until death intervenes.
This article is dedicated to the memory of Mr. Subba Rao Rebbapragada, B.A., LL.B., (b. October 13, 1893 – d. May 26, 1948). He served as a Government Prosecutor at the District Sessions Court, Rajahmundry, East Godavari District, Madras Presidency, the Province of the British Empire in India, as a loyal subject of the British Crown. India existed under foreign rule during much of its long history and won its independence on August 15, 1947, just about 74 years ago. Indians are very tolerant of slavery and servitude imposed by their foreign masters. India has its own traditional laws and it established secular laws under the influence of its British Rule.
The moral influence of Christianity has provoked man to rebel against the evil, and corrupt practice of slavery and involuntary servitude. Slavery was commonly practiced in the world of Bible times. Slavery existed in various parts of the world for thousands of years and it took the full intellectual force of Christian Faith to ban it from the globe. The New Testament Book of Galatians, Chapter 3, verses 26-28: “You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” The New Testament Books of Bible moved away from the concepts shared by The Books of The Old Testament, and preach that man has to make a moral choice between Spirit and Sin. If man chooses Spirit, he submits to the Will of LORD God and lives his life as God’s slave. If man chooses Sin, he succumbs to a life of vice, and corruption. Christianity teaches that men are created equal if they share a common faith in Jesus Christ and it provides an opportunity to man not to choose Slavery, Involuntary Servitude, and Forced Labor imposed by another man, social institutions, and national entities. Hence, man has a natural right to oppose the practice of Slavery, Involuntary Servitude, or Forced labor even if the secular Laws created by man may condone or overlook such practices. The United States adopted its ‘Declaration of Independence’ on July 04, 1776 while announcing its separation from Great Britain and it had boldly announced:”We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
While Americans are aware of man’s natural rights, they continued the practice of Slavery until the ‘Emancipation Proclamation’ issued by President Abraham Lincoln in September 1862 which came into effect on January 01, 1863 freeing the slaves in all territory still at War with the Union. It appears that Americans have entirely forgotten the lessons they learned from fighting a bitter, bloody Civil War to end the practice of Slavery in the Union. Americans have resurrected the practice of Slavery, Involuntary Servitude and Forced Labor by enacting secular laws that violate the Principle of Equal Protection under Law. Such slavery practices are enforced using the force, and machinery of its legal institutions, governmental agencies and departments that they have created to serve their subjects who lost their discerning ability to know right from wrong.
THE INSTITUTIONALIZED PRACTICE OF SLAVERY, INVOLUNTARY SERVITUDE, AND FORCED LABOR IN THE UNITED STATES:
The term ‘Slave Driver’ describes a person who oversees and directs the work of slaves. The United States is using its Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Internal Revenue Service, and Department of Homeland Security to enforce the practice of slavery and involuntary servitude in its territory while people labor on the US soil to support their natural rights to Life with or without the rights entitled to its citizens.
The term servant describes a person employed to perform services, a person who earns wage by providing hourly labor. Serf is any person who is oppressed or without freedom. Bondage involves subjection of a person to some force, compulsion, or influence that takes away freedom. The term slavery refers to hard work, toil, labor like that done by slaves, drudgery or servitude as practiced by societal institutions or by employers sanctioned by the State. It is clearly documented beyond any doubt that billions of dollars deducted from the paychecks issued to alien workers flow to the Social Security Administration(SSA) every year. These public funds will be used by the United States to pay retirees and Medicare beneficiaries while the alien workers have no legal right to claim the benefits to which they had fully contributed under the provisions of the Federal Insurance Contributions Act(FICA). In this context, it must be understood, that labor consumes the short hours, the short days, the short weeks, the short years of human life. The characteristic of all labor is that it consumes some part of human life. All humans are subject to the natural condition called aging. The Labor Law is a body of law applied to such matters as employment, remuneration, and conditions of work. In its most comprehensive sense it includes old age and disability. Old age is a natural condition that contributes to the disability associated with the aging process that forces man to seek retirement from work.
The United States Department of Labor was established in 1913 to administer and enforce statutes that promote the welfare, improve the working conditions of all laborers or workforce. Social Security is a public program that provides for economic security and welfare and it is operated by the Social Security Administration(SSA) that was established in 1946. It provides some cash payment to defray income loss due to old age. The US Social Security Act of 1935 established retirement insurance. The health insurance plan called Medicare was added in 1965 and it is administered by the Health Care Financing Administration that was established in 1977 as a branch of the Department of Health and Human Services. While the US Labor Law explicitly prohibits the practice of discrimination at workplace, it allowed the separation of workers into two distinct categories; 1. The domestic, or native workers who are entitled to claim the benefits of retirement insurance, and health insurance to which they make contributions through payroll deductions, and 2. The alien or non-immigrant workers who pay into the System and contribute towards the benefits provided by retirement insurance and health insurance but are legally disqualified to apply for the benefits to which they have already paid.
THE US CODE CHAPTER 77, TITLE 18, Section 1581, 1584 and 1589:
The United States has enacted legislation that specifically prohibit slavery, involuntary servitude or forced labor. These provisions are contained in Chapter 77 of Title 18. Section 1581 prohibits using force, the threat of force, or the threat of legal coercion to compel a person to work against his/her will. Section 1584 makes it unlawful to hold a person in a condition of slavery, that is a condition of compulsory service or labor against his/her will by use of actual force, threats of force, or threats of legal coercion. Section 1584 specifically prohibits compelling a person to work against his/her will by creating a “climate of fear” through the use of force, the threat of force, or the threat of legal coercion(i.e. if you don’t work, I’ll call the Immigration Officials”) which is sufficient to compel service against a person’s will. Section 1589 broadens the definition of the kinds of coercion that might result in forced labor and it includes by means of the abuse or threatened abuse of law or the legal process.
“THE COMMON LAW IS THE WILL OF MANKIND ISSUING FROM THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE”:
The US Department of Justice wants to uphold the principles of natural law and it has boldly proclaimed its motto: “The Common Law is the will of Mankind issuing from the Life of the People.” It is indeed very pleasing to read that US wants to abide by the Principles of Natural Law that are enshrined in the Supreme Law of the nation called ‘The Constitution of the United States of America’ which gives the hope of equal protection, or equality of protection to all human beings who reside in its territory where the Law is the Sovereign principle governing the lives of people. I am asking my readers to tell me as to why the US Department of Health and Human Services declines to offer the benefits of retirement insurance and health care insurance to alien/non-immigrant workers aged 66-years or more who have fully paid their contributions to seek the eligibility established for receiving these benefits. The alien/non-immigrant workers aged 66-years or more are legally coerced by the State to continue to labor or work against their will. If such persons apply for their retirement insurance and health care insurance benefits, the State may use is its inherent power and remove those individuals from its territory and send them empty-handed and compel them to lead a life of forced labor as they have no access to old age retirement. For this reason, I have named United States as a ‘SLAVE DRIVER’ and if I am wrong, kindly spare a few minutes of your time and tell me the reason to suggest that I could be wrong.
I would like to invite my readers to share their views and correct me if I am wrong in expressing my concerns about Slavery, Forced Labor, and Involuntary Servitude.
Rudra Narasimham Rebbapragada
Ann Arbor, MI 48104-4162, USA
Special Frontier Force-Establishment 22-Vikas Regiment