Juneteenth

No More Normal: Free-ish?

Jun 20, 2021
Khalil Ekulona / KUNM

One hundred and fifty-eight years ago, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, putting an end to slavery in the United States. News traveled slowly in those days—no social media to spread the word. But this executive order took an especially long time to get to all corners of the country: two-and-a-half years, in fact. On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, where the last enslaved people were told of their freedoms. From that moment on, African Americans have celebrated June 19 as the end of slavery in their communities, towns and cities. What do they celebrate? Freedom for one. There is also a theme of remembering our ancestors who survived almost unfathomable hardships so that we can be here, today.

Elliotte Cook

Albuquerque lost an influential anti-racism activist and educator this summer. Bahati Myhelatu Ansari died from lymphocytic leukemia at 72 years old on June 27, 2020. She was the founder of the “Racism Free Zone” program for schools, which she started in Oregon about 30 years ago after her sons experienced racist attacks in junior high school. KUNM's Yasmin Khan met up with Ansari’s son Elliotte Cook at his mother’s favorite spot in Albuquerque, Tingley Beach, to talk about his mother and her legacy.

Yasmin Khan / KUNM

Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865 when enslaved people in Texas learned they were free, almost two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation had officially outlawed slavery. Hundreds of people gathered to celebrate Juneteenth in Albuquerque this weekend, filling Roosevelt Park with music, dancing and barbeque. 

YNMG & COVID: The Doors Are Locked

Jun 19, 2020

In episode 78 we discuss what’s happening in Santa Fe at the legislative special session. It’s a unique situation up there; COVID-19 precautions have led to a locked-in session with no opportunity for citizens to attend in person. But first, we hear from organizers of the Albuquerque Juneteenth celebration commemorating 155 years since the official end of slavery in Texas, with the entire United States following soon after. 

Shaun Griswold

Firearms and other deadly weapons are prohibited in Albuquerque parks and recreation facilities under a new administrative order issued Friday by Mayor Tim Keller’s office. The rule excludes law enforcement officials and applies to any city property used for public school-related activities, including Civic Plaza.

YNMG & COVID: Demilitarize Defund Dismantle

Jun 11, 2020
Nash Jones / KUNM


The country is grappling with practical steps for ending police brutality and racism in policing. We explore some local ideas in episode 74, from completely burning down the system to moderate reform to minor policy changes. Community and Black Lives Matter organizers, Albuquerque’s mayor and City Councilor Lan Sena, and activists who work with and against police weigh in on what the future of public safety could look like.

Mrs. Charles Stephenson (Grace Murray) [Public domain]

Let's Talk New Mexico 6/13 8a: New Mexico has rich African American history and culture beginning with the arrival of Spanish explorers, continuing with the Homestead Act, through the Civil Rights era, and into the present day. In celebration of Juneteenth, we'll hear from folks who are working to preserve and share this legacy here.