To coincide with Juneteenth, the 19th of June, the day the United States Of America celebrating the emancipation of those who had been enslaved in the United States. Originating in Texas, it is now celebrated annually through the USA, with varying official recognition. Specifically, it commemorates Union army general Gordon Granger announcing federal orders in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, proclaiming that all slaves in Texas were free, even though it was still legal and practiced elsewhere until the end of the year. Traditions include public readings of the Emancipation Proclamation, singing traditional songs such as "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" and "Lift Every Voice and Sing", and reading of works by noted African-American writers such as Ralph Ellison and Maya Angelou. But with the Black Lives Matter protests in the wake of more killings of African-Americans by police, it has hailed greater cultural prominence in 2020. Which is why DC Comics posted on Twitter the following image, by Milestone co-founder and creator Denys Cowan, with the phrase
Listen, reflect, and learn. #Juneteenth
The artwork showed a number of Black DC Comics characters taking the knee or posing with the Black Power salute, including Green Lantern, Rocket, Amanda Waller, Hardware, Bumblebee, Aqualad, Icon, The Signal, Black Manta, Mister Terrific, Black Lightning, Superman Of Earth 23, Static, Guardian, Doctor Mid-Nite, Lucius Fox, Bronze Tiger, Vixen, Tyroc, Steel, Cyborg, Batwing, Wise Son, Jakeem Thunder – though the names had to be repeated to fill the space.
But it was also noted by commentators that only one of the named characters currently has a solo series currently, Green Lantern Sojourner "Jo" Mullein in Far Sector from N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell, many aren't regular characters in any current DC comic book – if they appear at all. Maybe some of the people who should be listening, reflecting and learning might the people who make such decisions at DC Comics?