As racial tensions continue to build in this country following the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and many others, multiple corporations have started to acknowledge the importance of Juneteenth for Black people and this country. LL Cool J shared his gratification that this day of independence is finally getting the recognition it deserves worldwide.
“I don’t know exactly where I will do something, of course it’s about time that people recognize the day worldwide,” he told Yahoo! Finance. “And let me tell you something man, you know Blacks in America have come a long way, but still got a long way to go. And there’s a lot of remnants of, you know, systemic issues that still exist that try to exclude us from participating in certain things.”
The Mama Said Knock You Out emcee hopes that one day Black people can get to a point where they are allowed to celebrate themselves without being terrorized by others. “I would encourage people not to get bitter, but to get better,” he said. “I’m definitely celebrating that day in a big way. It’s a very important day to me, a very important day to Black people.”
He continued, “It’s beautiful to say like when we get to the point where we can all celebrate ourselves without being intimidated by others, or being like when we can celebrate our ethnic and cultural differences in a way that is not offensive to everybody else. That’s going to be a beautiful day, but we’re not there yet. But that’s going to be a beautiful day.”
Earlier this week, Gov. Ralph Northam, along with Pharrell, announced a proposal to make Juneteenth a paid state holiday in Virginia. “This is a very special moment. Very special. This is a big display of progress and I’m grateful for Virginia and us leading the way,” said the In My Mind rapper.
Companies such as Twitter, Amazon, Nike, Square, Target and more have declared Juneteenth a paid company holiday for their employees. The NFL has also announced that their offices will be closed as “a day to reflect on our past, but more importantly, consider how each one of us can continue to show up and band together to work toward a better future.”