The Detroit Lions have joined a growing number of sports teams not only observing but establishing Juneteeth as an organizational holiday.
Juneteeth is the commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States. On June 19, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger and the Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas to announce the Civil War was over and the 250,000 enslaved people were free.
That happened a full two and half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed in 1853. There was little Union presence in Texas until Granger arrived and read to the people General Orders No. 3: “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.” Slavery in the U.S. was formally abolished later in December with the 13th Amendment.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodelll announced the NFL would recognize Juneteeth as a company holiday.
Roger Goodell announced that the NFL will recognize June 19 as a company holiday.— ESPN (@espn) June 12, 2020
Called Juneteenth, June 19 is celebrated as the effective end of slavery in the United States. pic.twitter.com/Kx5Kt3tljo
A number of teams have announcing they, too, are closing offices for the day:
This Friday our offices will be closed in honor of Juneteenth - join us in learning more about the holiday, celebrating it, and participating in the fight for equality.— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) June 17, 2020
In a series of Town Halls with employees, Broncos President & CEO Joe Ellis announced Juneteenth will be a permanent, paid holiday for the organization starting this year as a day of reflection, learning and service.— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) June 15, 2020
» https://t.co/iJJnqtjW2y pic.twitter.com/n8LfT4VraR
The #Texans business and football offices will be closed on Friday as the organization observes Juneteenth.— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) June 17, 2020
The City of Detroit is holding a weeklong series of Juneteeth events, including discussions on Black mental health, and criminal justice reform. The celebration ends with a freedom rally at Spirit Plaza, which is the area near the Spirit of Detroit statue. Click here to view the whole list of events.
And onto the rest of your notes.
- CBS Sports’ Sean Wagner-McGough offered his top 10 quarterbacks for the 2020 season, ranking Matthew Stafford at No 7. Now the Detroit Free Press’ Carlos Monarrez outlines how Matthew Stafford can justify his top 10 ranking this year.
- More on the team meetings dedicated to topics like racism and social injustice:
- Erik Schlitt for LionsWire explores whether the Lions should sign Cam Newton.
- Happy Birthday, Jason Hanson!
Today is former @Lions K Jason Hanson's birthday.— Detroit Lions PR (@LionsPR) June 17, 2020
His 327 career games rank as the most by one player with one team in @NFL history & he is the only player to play 300 games with one franchise
He is also the only player in NFL history to score 2,000 points for one franchise. pic.twitter.com/sj3MvECtE6