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Comedian Chris Rock received a lot of flack for his Fourth of July tweet which read, ”Happy white peoples independence day the slaves weren’t free but I’m sure they enjoyed fireworks.” Although the tweet is factually true, it struck some as ungrateful and mean-spirited. Some people even went so far as to call Rock un-American for the comment. But was Frederick Douglass un-American when he made a similar observation about the Fourth of July in 1852? Douglass acknowledged back then what Rock acknowledged this week, that the slaves weren’t free:
On July 5, 1852, Frederick Douglass gave a speech at an event commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence, held at Rochester’s Corinthian Hall. In the moving oratory, the speaker told his audience, “This Fourth of July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn.” And he asked them, “Do you mean, citizens, to mock [...]
The post Frederick Douglas: The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro appeared first on Black Like Moi.