Tomorrow, June 19th 2021, is the 156th Juneteenth celebration in the United States. We would like to take a moment as a community to honor the historical origins of this important milestone towards the freedom of Black people, reflect on the progress we still need to make, and (crucially) amplify Black joy._
Information technology can be a force for progress— But it so often amplifies prejudice, biases and oppression. So if you ask "What does this have to do with software development?", the answer is "Where do we start?". Our industry is building the future, and if we do not learn about our human history or pay a microscope on inequities around us, what are we even doing?
Last year on June 19th, we shared a post that includes some of the history behind Juneteenth: Black Independence Day in the United States. If you're wondering what Juneteenth is all about (which might especially be the case if you're not located in the U.S.!), we recommend you take a look at it as a starting point.
This year, we wanted to share some ideas for celebrating Juneteenth worldwide — specifically for software developers. Because it is our responsibility as technologists to support Black freedom, joy, and genius as we build the future together.
Awesome Accomplice by DEV community member @karaaj is a great place to start...
Thank you to community member @lethargilistic for pointing us here!
My preferred way to celebrate Juneteenth is to read some of the narratives of former slaves. The US government collected thousands of them. Enslaved people were people, and the best way to understand their humanity is to read their life stories in their own words.
In this one, a former slave recounts being informed of his freedom. It's also a great example of the immediate success of lies behind the former Confederacy's Lost Cause myth.
... A free and virtual conference made for Black people in tech. Inn the words of JuneteenthConf's organizers, the conference "celebrates Black Excellence and promotes community for Black people who are severely underrepresented, overlooked, and underutilized in the tech industry."
June 19th. Register here
Because honoring Black History shouldn't be confined to one month per year.
We would love to hear how you plan to commemorate Juneteenth this year in the comments below ❤️