“Today, on June 19, Americans celebrate the end of the horrific system of slavery in the United States. It has been 152 years since word of emancipation reached Texas, the last state in the union to free its slaves. Yet, in our country, those from communities of color are still subject to vestiges of slavery in the form of deeply rooted racism and discrimination. While it is essential to celebrate the progress we have made in making America a more equitable and just place to call home, it critical to continue to fight existing systems of oppression and injustice.
“Days ago, St. Anthony Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez, who shot and killed Philano Castile, was acquitted of second-degree manslaughter charges. Unlike his victim, Officer Yanez was able to leave a courtroom and return home to his loved ones. The ongoing pattern of unconscionable police shootings sends a stark message to young Black children that law enforcement officials can kill them with utter impunity. However, despite setbacks, I remain deeply committed to addressing and fixing such inequality in our justice system with our local, state, and national partners.
“I am proud of the progress we have made in the last 152 years. I am proud that Milwaukeeans marked this historic day with their 44th annual ‘Day of Jubilee’ parade. Most importantly, I am proud of the determination of my fellow Democratic colleagues in Congress to continue fighting with me so that no American has to feel the sting of oppression or disenfranchisement.”