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Seth Cotlar @SethCotlar
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1. On this beautiful 4th I celebrate our Founders who stopped the enforcement of oppressive laws through collective direct action (Google “Stamp Act”)
2. On this beautiful 4th I salute our Founders who recognized that the rules of civility should not be used as a cover for powerful people who wanted to be complicit with oppressive gov't action. Google (Continental Asscoation 1774) or read nationalhumanitiescenter.org/ows/seminarsfl…
3. On this beautiful 4th I salute Crispus Attucks, the first colonist to lose his life in the Revolution. Attucks, an African-American man in a multi-racial crowd of working people, was shot while protesting military harassment of civilians. pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part2…
4. On this beautiful 4th I salute the rich, powerful, often slave-holding white men who nonetheless signed their names to these revolutionary words "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." archives.gov/founding-docs/…
5. On this beautiful 4th I salute the many enslaved people in Revolutionary America who, like Elizabeth Freedman ("Mum Bett") in Massachusetts, heard the words of the Declaration and used them as a political lever to gain their own freedom. pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part2…
6. On this beautiful 4th I salute Lemuel Haynes, a free black minister in Vermont who wrote "Liberty Further Extended" in 1776, urging the Patriots to recognize that slavery was a contradiction to their own, revolutionary principles. inside.sfuhs.org/dept/history/U…
7. On this beautiful 4th I salute the 14 people enslaved at George Washington's Mount Vernon who, upon seeing a British ship of war in the Potomac in 1781, ran to it and claimed their own freedom from "the father of our country." mountvernon.org/george-washing…
8. On this beautiful 4th I salute Ona Judge who, at the age of 16 and separated from her mother by her enslavers (George & Martha Washington), escaped from her captors with the help of dozens of free black & white ppl who defied the law to help her. nytimes.com/2017/02/06/art…
9. And contra Mr. Huckabee, on this beautiful 4th I salute our Founders, most of whom hated militarism and were concerned that what they called "a standing army" would become an engine for tyranny. teachinghistory.org/history-conten…
10. On this beautiful 4th I celebrate the progressive descendants of the Founders who extended their vision of equality into new territory. Like the feminists at Seneca Falls in 1848 who declared that "all men AND WOMEN are created equal." sourcebooks.fordham.edu/mod/senecafall…
11. And on this beautiful 4th I celebrate the abolitionist descendants of our Founders like Frederick Douglass, who pushed his fellow citizens to shed their racism and truly extend the Declaration's promise of equality to all humans. teachingamericanhistory.org/library/docume…
12. And on this beautiful 4th I celebrate President Lincoln, who insisted that THE central document of the founding era was the Declaration of Independence with its guiding, unfolding principle of fundamental human equality. abrahamlincolnonline.org/lincoln/speech…
13. On this beautiful 4th I do NOT salute the Confederates who said "Our new government is founded...upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition." teachingamericanhistory.org/library/docume…
14. Finally, on this beautiful 4th I humbly acknowledge the many members of Native nations, like William Apess, who have pointed out the political and religious hypocrisy of the Americans who forcibly occupied their lands. books.google.com/books?id=PJRi-…
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