We sat down to talk with our community, continuing our series, which amplifies the voices and stories to help inspire others. You can also read our 5 Things To Know About Juneteenth post from last year.
BUSINESS PIONEER + PHILANTHROPIST
Q: Why is educating yourself about history crucial in evolving as a community?
M: With Juneteenth, I think it's important to understand the scope of hundreds of years of enslavement. Research [Juneteenth] and know that we still live in a nation that hasn't come to terms with its truth. We have obligations as human beings to acknowledge that truth.
QUAY DISTRICT MANAGER
Q: As we honor + celebrate Juneteenth, what is one way you think individuals can do to practice allyship?
J: To put it simply, listen. Listen to all of those around you and genuinely hear and try to empathize with their experiences. We’ve all come from different paths, and it doesn’t cost you anything to hear someone out and take a moment to attempt to place yourself in their shoes.
ACTIVIST + MODEL
Q: June marks the celebration of International Pride Month + Juneteenth. Being that you identify as both gender queer and Black—for you, how are these two moments inherently intertwined?
M: Juneteenth is a holiday to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States, but the fact that it also takes place during Pride Month is a poignant reminder of the multi-layered complexities of existing as a queer Black person. Not only do we face queerphobia, but also systemic racism in the form of anti-Blackness.
LOVE IS QUAY
The only way to fight racism is to be actively anti-racist—educate yourself, speak up, donate, take action. There is no neutral position on racism.
We believe that all people—regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, or creed—deserve respect, opportunity, and love.