July 4th isn’t a “white” holiday

I can understand why some African-Americans decline to celebrate July 4th, the birth of the United States. The Declaration of Independence was a sort of promissory note, not fully available to them.

“You call it Independence Day,” they say, “but it was not independence for Black people in America.”

They defended a country that wronged them (Photo: Military Times)

That is partly true, and is one reason why Juneteenth is important.

While slavery once was practiced in both the North and South, as the Colonies ramped up to fight for their freedom, white Northerners passed laws to secure freedom for people who didn’t look like them. 

Many African descendants living in the Colonies were free even before that. Some Blacks enslaved other Blacks.

A free Black man, Crispus Attucks, was a patriot who was killed in 1770’s Boston Massacre, and is credited with being the first person to die for freedom in the Revolutionary War.

His name should be widely known and celebrated among both Blacks and whites.

The truth is, the vast majority of African-Americans do celebrate the Fourth of July. Just drive through Fairmount Park and see the families grilling and picnicking.

Or look at our military, in which Black people comprise about 30% of active duty military personnel while they are only 13% of the population. By this measure, you could argue Blacks are more patriotic than whites.

Edison High School holds the sad distinction of having more of its students killed in Vietnam than any other high school — 64, almost all Black.

In World War II, the Black Tuskegee Airmen were discriminated against in large and small ways by the Army, but they took that guff because they were determined to fight for a country that did not treat them fairly. How many other people love this country that much?

The Black people I know — which excludes some academics and those who make a living out of assumed victimhood — celebrate Independence Day.

They feel they have earned it. 

And they have.

Happy Independence Day to everyone.

25 thoughts on “July 4th isn’t a “white” holiday”

  1. Good, and informative, article Stu. It is a shame but in spite of what you said there are other groups who feel African-Americans should not be afforded anything.

        1. H,
          I agree, but Stu emphasized NEVER for a good reason: Because of the world we occupy. Personally, I believe there’s a better life after death.

          1. Tom, I understand why Stu emphasized NEVER and unfortunately I know it to be true. That does not keep me from wishing and hoping. I, too, believe what you said about there being a better life after death.

  2. Philadelphia, PA

    Dear Stu,

    It should be noted that for a long time after the Civil War, Black Americans were almost the only people in the South to celebrate Independence Day. They were, of course “Lincoln Republicans,” though the rest of the South was solidly Democratic. Up to the end of Reconstruction, when federal troops were removed from the South, black Americans were very influential in several state governments (the leaders of the Confederacy had been disenfranchised), and sent a good number of representatives to Congress.

    At the end of Reconstruction, what happened was that the “radical (Lincoln) Republicans” lost power to Northern business interests –the Republican “stalwarts” — who were up to their ears in corruption.

    Happy Independence Day!

    H.G. Callaway

    Thank you Veterans and active duty personnel for safeguarding my freedom.
    Short and to the point. For further support of this argument, here are two names. Frederick Douglas and Thurgood Marshall. If people don’t know these names, then welcome to the wonderful world of google. LOOK THEM UP !
    Like you and most of the bloggers here, I have known people with the hyphen that are either proud and good folks are quite the opposite. This isn’t limited to black, though that is the message from the media and the swamp. I really do think that things are better than what is perceived. Low lifes of all persuasions will always look for the freebees. It’s the quiet multitude that just just trudges along, making a living, supporting the family, and hoping for health and happiness.
    Speaking of Veterans, and I was. Research the military. Most of the ‘lifers’ in my day were black. They had opportunities in the service that was not available to them in the civilian world. The smart ones stayed in, climbed rank, married and had families. The ones that I know, came out with a nice retirement package and went to work – again, for the government. Another pension ! So, boys and girls. Tell me again about racial inequality.

  4. Isn’t it sad that Independence Day needs to be defended? No other country in history has accomplished more to correct its faults. No other country even tries.

    All of what you say is true, Stu.  But when agenda driven why let truth get in the way?  You don’t have to read today’s Inq (Currents) to understand this. Just the headlines. Or just a few of the convenient reader letters.

    Like CRT, a “non issue manufactured by some Republican operative………… blah blah blah!”  Another reader: our democracy under attack on two fronts ……an  “‘insurrection’ on Jan 6, an attempt to stop the certification (legal..my words)of votes….etc.,” and the other front, “to change voter laws, to restrict our access, our very ability to vote.” The latter an unwitting attempt of projection, ignorant of anarchists’ ANTIFA and BLM and the two billion dollar riots and murders. It was the democrats (lawyers) before the election who changed the laws. 

    When we come to grips that the media is the democratic party, then and only then will we be “woke.” 

  5. To all those who lost a loved one in any of our wars-engagements, police actions, or covert operations I hope you have a peaceful and restful Holiday. To all those who served our country in some form in the military, I thank you for your service. But there is a third group of public servants that today that deserves just a little extra thanks due for their dual contribution. May the Holiday be enjoyed and used as a special thank you to all those who served in the military in defense of our country and then spent additional years in a police or fire department or as a first responder again serving their country professionally. I pay homage to all the families who suffered the loss of a loved one or waited in fear for the return of their family hero who spent a great part of their life in support of our independence. Lastly, I toast to all Americans on this day of remembrance of our fight for independence and hope those who ignore their valor never have to face the despots of other countries who seek no confrontation with the American soldier.

    1. well said, Tom. Many of us upon return from military were offered employment with the city. I’m not cut out to be a cop, as many of my family wore the blue.

  6. Dear Stu:
    With regard to Edison High School young men killed in Vietnam, all attended Edison High School, but a large number of them did not graduate.
    Like the more than 58,000 Americans killed in that conflict I call the Childrens Crusade, they went off to war when they heard the call.
    I know because I wrote all their obituaries for the Philadelphia Daily News special edition published in conjunction with the dedication of the Philadelphia Vietnam War Memorial in Society Hill.

  7. The fact you felt compelled to address this issue shows how far the dissolution of e pluribus unum has progressed. Sad.

  8. Apparently the Patriot Front group feels it should be for White people only, and only certain White people, according to their beliefs and what they want.
    I, personally, want to tell them, and I hope some of them see this, stay the f*** out of my city.

      1. Stu, we do not know what they had planned to do if they had not been confronted. Their smoke bomb was not peaceable by any standards.

        1. We do NOT know what “might” have been “planned, ” so we deal with what they did, which was NOTHING.
          The smoke bomb was harmless. They did not bomb, loot or burn, as far as I know.
          If they defaced George Floyd monuments, they should be prosecuted as vandals. Same for those who vandalized Columbus, Rizzo and others.

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