On this day in history, June 19, 1865, marks the day on which slaves in Texas first learned that slavery had been abolished. Although the Emancipation Proclamation had been in effect since January 1, 1863, the news didn’t reach Texas until June 19, 1865.

So here we are in 2012, and even though I was not around (physically) during the 1800s, I can imagine how difficult it was for those who were stripped of all human dignity and forced to wear chains and shackles like animals.

Just think back to when those ancestors endured so much in their fight for freedom (free-dumb)--  and I use the term freedom cautiously because even though you may think you’re free physically, you may not be free mentally.

Just take a look around you at those individuals in our community today who still live with chains and shackles (uneducated, mis-educated, poverty stricken, drug addicted, products of the prison system, those individuals who refuse to learn and understand what it means to have an awareness of self, those individuals who lack a knowledge of their cultural history, etc.) on the brain!