When Juneteenth is mainstream

To the editor:

How will Juneteenth be celebrated once the holiday becomes mainstreamed? Will it become as caricatured and commercialized as St Patrick’s Day? Or trivialized into a cookout such as Memorial Day — “the start of summer?”

No doubt they’re spooling up kente cloth beer koozie production at the Xinjiang internment camps, preparing for next year’s Juneteenth sales events. Meanwhile, some outside the Black community might wonder how to celebrate Juneteenth in a respectful manner, without the tacky cultural appropriation.

The Adirondacks is predominantly white, but we can pride ourselves on some serious Juneteenth street cred. John Brown’s Farm is in North Elba, it’s a state historic site, and there lies the world’s preeminent abolitionist. The Underground Railroad passed right through our communities and many safe houses still exist. Our predecessors met in local churches and overwhelmingly voted to defy the infamous Fugitive Slave Act of 1850.

I think we already get it, corporate America, no koozies and ice cream needed here.

Frank Pagano



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