What is your 4th of July?

Every year, America celebrates their independence day from British. It is indeed a very important day but it wasn’t a holiday that everyone celebrated.

As a history buff, I’m always trying to relate current events to our past because you won’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve come from.

And on this very patriotic holiday, I have to pay homage to another fellow journalist, Frederick Douglass. He was born a slave but died a public speaker, an abolitionist, editor, journalist and free. So today as we celebrate America’s 236th birthday, I want us all to remember one of Douglass’ many speeches, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July” – July 5, 1852.

What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer; a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim.

To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sound of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciation of tyrants brass fronted impudence; your shout of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanks-givings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy — a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages.

There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States, at this very hour.

Happy 4th of July America — remember your past to make a better future.

Until next time,

Kirstin

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One thought on “What is your 4th of July?

  1. This is doubtless one of Douglass’s finest speeches, vividly depicting the contrasts between slaves and whites in this country on a day replete with bombastic praise for America’s liberty when freedom and independence for blacks were non-existent.

    JAG

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