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How should we celebrate Juneteenth?

Gloria Johnson-Hovey and Mary Heveron-Smith on "Connections"
Emmarae Stein
Gloria Johnson-Hovey and Mary Heveron-Smith appear on "Connections with Evan Dawson" on Thursday, June 2, 2022.

A year ago, Juneteenth became an official federal holiday. This followed decades of advocacy for a day that is often known as Emancipation Day, Freedom Day, and Black Independence Day. This year, there are a number of local commemorations for Juneteenth, but critics point out that already, the holiday is being commercialized. Walmart is selling Juneteenth-flavored ice cream, for example.

We discuss the significance of the day -- and how it should be celebrated -- with our guests:

Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.
Emmarae Stein is the production assistant for "Connections with Evan Dawson."