Today is June 19th, also known as Juneteenth. It commemorates the day in 1865 that slaves in Galveston, Texas were told of the end of the Civil War and that their forced bondage had been ended — two and a half years before.
The Emancipation Proclamation ended slavery in 1862 and the law reflected this on January 1, 1863, but the news of it conveniently managed to not be distributed in Texas and there are various explanations for this mind-boggling delay. They include one version where a messenger was murdered. Another was that slave owners were being given one last harvest. Theories include Texas not recognizing President Lincoln’s authority. All of these, while possibly true, seem to point to a cruelty beyond reason: that humans could be kept as property even when the law forbade it, simply because enough people wanted slavery to continue for their own reasons.
MagicLinks has taken a public stance on the Civil Rights / Human Rights movement happening in America and around the world right now. We are a company, but we are made up of human beings and we know that our values come before anything else we can possibly hope to stand for.
We also recognize that the mic belongs to those who’ve been denied equality. We hosted an Instagram Live event this morning with Mena Adubea to discuss equity (spoiler alert, she slayed) and one of her key points was to make sure that organizations include equity and representation explicitly. She spoke to making sure brands approach campaigns with a diverse audience and diverse influencers as part of their structure. She discussed negotiating with brands by knowing your worth – something we agree with wholeheartedly and which is why since day one we’ve been transparent with influencers about their data. Mena discussed the limited spaces on brands’ IG pages and how they need to always reflect the diversity of their customers, not just because a wave of public sentiment arose during the Black Lives Matter movement.
For the broader, sweeping importance of Juneteenth – The New York Times podcast, “The Daily,” did a wonderful interview with Dr. Daina Ramey Berry from the University of Texas at Austin. She breaks down the events of the day itself and what it’s meant for black Americans through the decades, including for her own family and teenage son as he comes of age. We could write more about Juneteenth here, but the power in her discussing the reality, the lived experience, deserves being heard.
Join us in living your values, and reach out if you’d like to be part of another event like ours with Mena. We’d love to have you