Friday, July 4, 2008

Frederick Douglass on the Meaning of the 4th of July

Today is a good day to revisit the famous speech that Frederick Douglass gave in Rochester's Corinthian Hall on July 5, 1852, called The Meaning of July 4th to the Negro." Daily Kos has a thoughtful essay by Meteor Blades, as well as an excerpt from Douglass' longer speech, on the abolitionist's heroism in speaking truth to power. At the time of Douglass' speech, it was a holiday that was a celebration in name only for American blacks.

And as you read the speech, ask yourself how much of the disparity that Douglass speaks of remains in American society today.

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