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Usher recently wrote an opinion piece for the Washington Post, where he discussed Juneteenth.

In the article, Usher stressed the importance of making the day a holiday. He wrote, “Recognizing Juneteenth as a national holiday would be a small gesture compared with the greater social needs of black people in America. But it can remind us of our journey toward freedom, and the work America still has to do.”

“We could observe it, as many black Americans already do, by celebrating both our first step toward freedom as black people in America and also the many contributions to this land: the construction of Black Wall Street; the invention of jazz, rock n’ roll, hip-hop and R&B; and all the entrepreneurship and business brilliance, extraordinary cuisine, sports excellence, political power and global cultural influence black Americans have given the world.”

Usher also discussed the current state of America. “My heart is shattered by the ongoing injustices in this country, incited by its long history of racism that has led to deadly outcomes for too many of our people. This country must change.” He added, “And it must change quickly.”

Read the full piece here.