Black Main Street
Black History

WATCH: Frederick Douglass “What, to the American Slave, is your 4th of July?

On July 5, 1852, Douglass gave a speech at an event commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence, held at Rochester’s Corinthian Hall. It was biting oratory, in which 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 me, by asking me to speak today?”

Within the now-famous address is what historian Philip S. Foner has called “probably the most moving passage in all of Douglass’ speeches.”

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.

 


Follow Black Main Street on BlackJunction and Facebook. Follow us on InstagramTwitter and Youtube

READ  Black Archaeologist Searches To Find Sunken Slave Ships

Related posts

Share Our History: Stagecoach Mary Fields – Wild West Badass and First Black Woman to Carry the Mail

BMS Admin

Share Our History: 6 Little Known Facts About African King Shaka Zulu

BMS Admin

Never Forget: The 1979 Greensboro Massacre: North Carolina’s Deadly KKK Shootout

BMS Admin

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

JOIN OUR COMMUNITY
Social networking for
the Black Community
www.blackjunction.com