America still has battles it must win
Another Independence Day has come and gone. Flags were waved, firework displays were everywhere, picnics were held, beer was drunk and many swore their undying love for America.
Meanwhile, there was a terrible earthquake in California, some poor souls were hit by lightning in South Carolina, another unarmed man was gunned down by the police and the Pirates struggled on.
Down in Washington, D.C., President Donald Trump’s brainchild for July 4, a parade glorifying the military and promoting militarism, was in full swing. It resembled something out of a totalitarian society and brought back memories of May Day in Moscow, when the Soviet bureaucrats attempted to pawn themselves off as friends of the workers.
While we celebrate independence here, the U.S. bosses have undermined or attempted to undermine independence movements in smaller countries. They worked to overthrow democratically elected governments in numerous countries, including Chile, Guatemala and Iran, and militarily intervened in others. Vietnam is a case in point.
Concerning the holiday, black abolitionist and social critic Frederick Douglass had some strong views on this day.
Douglass argued that July 4 was a cruel hoax for black people, who were held as slaves back then and who, following a civil war to end slavery, were prisoners of segregation in the Jim Crow south.
It would take a century for black people to gain some civil rights by fighting for them. For the most part, black people continue to be segregated at the bottom.
The Native American peoples were the victims of a genocidal war waged on them by an army of occupation.
For women, the reality of the Fourth is that they were denied the right to vote and were kept in a subservient position in society.
Many workers had to wage a fight for basic rights, as the main beneficiaries of the Fourth were wealthy white men.
Yes, the American Revolution was a step forward, and I do not want to downplay the importance of the freedom that still exists that was won through struggle against the powers that be.
To quote Douglass, “power concedes nothing without a demand.”
There are more battles on the horizon.