05
Jul
14

Douglass Redux: What, to Women, is the 4th of July?

Douglass Redux: What, to Women, is the 4th of July?

 

by @zizii2

****

On that sweltering July 5th 1852, exactly 162 years ago today, Frederick Douglass delivered his famous speech “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July”, a speech uncensored in its brutal rebuke of the hypocrisy of America celebrating independence, while its black population remained shackled in slavery. I wonder what he would say today if he were here in our time. No doubt the brutality of slavery in his time can never be compared to anything going on today.

Yet in view of the determined aggression of America’s conservative forces in our time, to derail every single gain made in the last century to advance Democracy and make this country “a more perfect union,” one wonders what he’d say. In the lifework of Frederick Douglass in which he combined his abolitionist cause with the fight for Women’s Rights, he always saw the struggles of enslaved African Americans as intertwined with the struggles of ALL disenfranchised Americans.

****

This particular address, What to the Slave, is the Fourth of July was delivered before a gathering of women in Rochester, New York, and like his contemporary Sojourner Truth, who spoke eloquently about her own bittersweet position of advocating for women’s rights alongside a cadre of upper class white women who were ill at ease with her own struggles as a slave woman, Douglass knew his own bind. Afterall, “Free states” like New York had themselves just become complicit in entrenching slavery when the Fugitive Slave Act, allowing slaveowners to go anywhere in the union to hunt down their “property” had been passed in Congress just a year prior, in 1851. Douglass had every right to sneer in disgust at being invited to speak on the occasion of American Independence:

*****

“What have I, or those I represent, to do with your national independence?”
Fellow-citizens, pardon me, allow me to ask, why am I called upon to speak here to-day? What have I, or those I represent, to do with your national independence? Are the great principles of political freedom and of natural justice, embodied in that Declaration of Independence, extended to us? and am I, therefore, called upon to bring our humble offering to the national altar, and to confess the benefits and express devout gratitude for the blessings resulting from your independence to us?
Would to God, both for your sakes and ours, that an affirmative answer could be truthfully returned to these questions! Then would my task be light, and my burden easy and delightful. For who is there so cold, that a nation’s sympathy could not warm him? Who so obdurate and dead to the claims of gratitude, that would not thankfully acknowledge such priceless benefits? Who so stolid and selfish, that would not give his voice to swell the hallelujahs of a nation’s jubilee, when the chains of servitude had been torn from his limbs? I am not that man. In a case like that, the dumb might eloquently speak, and the “lame man leap as an hart.”
But, such is not the state of the case. I say it with a sad sense of the disparity between us. I am not included within the pale of this glorious anniversary! Your high independence only reveals the immeasurable distance between us. The blessings in which you, this day, rejoice, are not enjoyed in common. The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought life and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me. This Fourth [of] July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn. To drag a man in fetters into the grand illuminated temple of liberty, and call upon him to join you in joyous anthems, were inhuman mockery and sacrilegious irony. Do you mean, citizens, to mock me, by asking me to speak to-day? If so, there is a parallel to your conduct. And let me warn you that it is dangerous to copy the example of a nation whose crimes, lowering up to heaven, were thrown down by the breath of the Almighty, burying that nation in irrecoverable ruin! I can to-day take up the plaintive lament of a peeled and woe-smitten people!

Fellow-citizens; above your national, tumultuous joy, I hear the mournful wail of millions! whose chains, heavy and grievous yesterday, are, to-day, rendered more intolerable by the jubilee shouts that reach them. If I do forget, if I do not faithfully remember those bleeding children of sorrow this day, “may my right hand forget her cunning, and may my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth!” To forget them, to pass lightly over their wrongs, and to chime in with the popular theme, would be treason most scandalous and shocking, and would make me a reproach before God and the world. My subject, then fellow-citizens, is AMERICAN SLAVERY. I shall see, this day, and its popular characteristics, from the slave’s point of view. Standing, there, identified with the American bondman, making his wrongs mine, I do not hesitate to declare, with all my soul, that the character and conduct of this nation never looked blacker to me than on this 4th of July! Whether we turn to the declarations of the past, or to the professions of the present, the conduct of the nation seems equally hideous and revolting.

America is false to the past, false to the present, and solemnly binds herself to be false to the future. Standing with God and the crushed and bleeding slave on this occasion, I will, in the name of humanity which is outraged, in the name of liberty which is fettered, in the name of the constitution and the Bible, which are disregarded and trampled upon, dare to call in question and to denounce, with all the emphasis I can command, everything that serves to perpetuate slavery—the great sin and shame of America! “I will not equivocate; I will not excuse”; I will use the severest language I can command; and yet not one word shall escape me that any man, whose judgment is not blinded by prejudice, or who is not at heart a slaveholder, shall not confess to be right and just.
{snip}

 

……….
“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.”

****

But Douglass showed up. And minced no words. The gem of his speech, lay not in the eyebrow-raising harshness of his language, or the beautiful lyrical turns of phrase, but in the pearl he himself pried out of the American morass he had just described, to show his audience that in spite of all the bile he had every right to spew, America was still a place of HOPE. That hope was written in its founding creed – “all men are created equal”. It was a creed that the young nation had FAILED at living up to, but it was there to be rediscovered and enacted into reality.

But before that could happen, Americans needed to confront the retrogressive forces full bore:

*****

 

“Americans! your republican politics, not less than your republican religion, are flagrantly inconsistent. You boast of your love of liberty, your superior civilization, and your pure Christianity, while the whole political power of the nation (as embodied in the two great political parties), is solemnly pledged to support and perpetuate the enslavement of three millions of your countrymen. You hurl your anathemas at the crowned headed tyrants of Russia and Austria, and pride yourselves on your Democratic institutions, while you yourselves consent to be the mere tools and bodyguards of the tyrants of Virginia and Carolina.
You invite to your shores fugitives of oppression from abroad, honor them with banquets, greet them with ovations, cheer them, toast them, salute them, protect them, and pour out your money to them like water; but the fugitives from your own land you advertise, hunt, arrest, shoot and kill. You glory in your refinement and your universal education yet you maintain a system as barbarous and dreadful as ever stained the character of a nation—a system begun in avarice, supported in pride, and perpetuated in cruelty. You shed tears over fallen Hungary, and make the sad story of her wrongs the theme of your poets, statesmen and orators, till your gallant sons are ready to fly to arms to vindicate her cause against her oppressors; but, in regard to the ten thousand wrongs of the American slave, you would enforce the strictest silence, and would hail him as an enemy of the nation who dares to make those wrongs the subject of public discourse!
You are all on fire at the mention of liberty for France or for Ireland; but are as cold as an iceberg at the thought of liberty for the enslaved of America. You discourse eloquently on the dignity of labor; yet, you sustain a system which, in its very essence, casts a stigma upon labor. You can bare your bosom to the storm of British artillery to throw off a threepenny tax on tea; and yet wring the last hard-earned farthing from the grasp of the black laborers of your country. You profess to believe “that, of one blood, God made all nations of men to dwell on the face of all the earth,” and hath commanded all men, everywhere to love one another; yet you notoriously hate, (and glory in your hatred), all men whose skins are not colored like your own. You declare, before the world, and are understood by the world to declare, that you “hotel these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal; and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; and that, among these are, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”; and yet, you hold securely, in a bondage which, according to your own Thomas Jefferson, “is worse than ages of that which your fathers rose in rebellion to oppose,” a seventh part of the inhabitants of your country.

Fellow-citizens! I will not enlarge further on your national inconsistencies. The existence of slavery in this country brands your republicanism as a sham, your humanity as a base pretence, and your Christianity as a lie. It destroys your moral power abroad; it corrupts your politicians at home. It saps the foundation of religion; it makes your name a hissing, and a by word to a mocking earth. It is the antagonistic force in your government, the only thing that seriously disturbs and endangers your Union. It fetters your progress; it is the enemy of improvement, the deadly foe of education; it fosters pride; it breeds insolence; it promotes vice; it shelters crime; it is a curse to the earth that supports it; and yet, you cling to it, as if it were the sheet anchor of all your hopes. Oh! be warned! be warned! a horrible reptile is coiled up in your nation’s bosom; the venomous creature is nursing at the tender breast of your youthful republic; for the love of God, tear away, and fling from you the hideous monster, and let the weight of twenty millions crush and destroy it forever!

*****

And there you have it. Douglass warned of the dangers of kowtowing to religious fundamentalism and how that would destroy this polity and all its glorious potential. The War on Women, and workers, and perennially on minorities all sanctioned with the backing of “religion”, nothing new. But they are corrosive to this beautiful country to the core. And just as he did despite risks to himself and his causes, SPEAK he did!!! One of the worst things DEMOCRACY-loving Americans have failed to do is SPEAK UP LOUDLY and PERSISTENTLY, without fear, and FIGHT CONTINUOUSLY without PAUSE those who would do us harm. Douglass died after attending yet another event on Women’s Rights. He died fighting. What about us?

After we won those hard battles for our rights over the last century and a half we rested on our laurels. We left the battlefield and left a vacuum which carcasses the fundamentalist and regressive conservatives picked clean and replaced with their venal institutions and propaganda outfits, many of which pervert the very name of our American ideals, LIBERTY, FREEDOM, RIGHTS, CHOICE. Goldwater lost badly after the Civil Rights and Voting Rights acts were passed. But what happened. We celebrated triumphs and went to sleep. Goldwater’s minions used that watershed election to organize a 50 year onslaught against us the American people. Look where we are today? We win elections, yet the regressive forces cheat and steal. They stack courts to roll back our rights. We look on helplessly. WTF happened to our country!!!!! Look what happened to WOMEN this week!!!

Douglass would gather all of us, Women, minorities, workers, all the 99% and he would tell us to gird up and break out of fear. Death be damned!!!

****

Nuff said!!


99 Responses to “Douglass Redux: What, to Women, is the 4th of July?”


  1. July 5, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    Will read and ponder this fine essay, zizi!! Thank you.

    Want everyone to ponder this fact ….

    #OWNthe114th

    Yes WE MUST

  2. July 5, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    This is unacceptable and insane! Instead of covering the jobs report Thursday it was wall-to-wall on the 3 Israeli teens…not a peep for a U.S. Palestinian citizen.
    https://twitter.com/haaretzcom/status/485562144922955777

    The Palestinian youth who was caught on video earlier this week being beaten by members of the Israeli Border Police is a United States citizen from Florida, the U.S. State Department confirmed on Saturday. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki named the youth as Tariq Khdeir, 15. He was a cousin of Muhammed Abu Khdeir, a 16-year-old Palestinian whose burned body was found Wednesday in the Jerusalem Forest. Khdeir was visited by a U.S. consulate official, the statement said.

    “We are profoundly troubled by reports that he was severely beaten while in police custody and strongly condemn any excessive use of force,” Psaki said. “We are calling for a speedy, transparent and credible investigation and full accountability for any excessive use of force.” “We reiterate our grave concern about the increasing violent incidents, and call on all sides to take steps to restore calm and prevent harm to innocents,” it added.

  3. July 5, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    On a lighter note…….Happy 4th of July TOD family!

    The Dutch goalkeeper did a fine job during Penalty Kicks, but never forget:

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

  4. 7 vcprezofan2
    July 5, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    The males have it! Well done, Bobfr and runner-up, LPlains!

    • 8 vcprezofan2
      July 5, 2014 at 9:46 pm

      /double take/ Lovely Plains, is that truly you? I thought you had moved to Timbuctoo, where there may not yet be internet.

      • July 5, 2014 at 9:51 pm

        Hello up north neighbor!!! What happened to Bouchard at Wimbledon today? Your countrywoman let us down :(

        This fella must have been distracting her from the stands :mrgreen:

        Image and video hosting by TinyPic

  5. 10 Nerdy Wonka
    July 5, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    Good stuff, zizi.

    • July 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      Thanks Nerdy for posting this. You rock! :)

      • 12 mtmarilyn
        July 6, 2014 at 10:24 pm

        zizi2, I am trying to catch up on all the posts I missed this weekend and have just started reading yours. I have never heard to this speech or Douglass. Thank you for adding to my education. What a speech and what a person.

        • 13 mtmarilyn
          July 6, 2014 at 11:41 pm

          Just noticed the typo, I meant this speech of Douglass. I now must go and read more of his speeches.

    • 14 GGAIL
      July 5, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      NW, this tweet is so awesome and true!

    • July 5, 2014 at 10:18 pm

      Bill Bryson (boomer humor author) wrote a hilarious account in one of his books (Made in America, 1994, I think) on how unprepared the Pilgrims were when they came ashore.

      They had few practical talents, and all truly would have starved to death if the “noble savages” hadn’t shown them how to hunt, forage and plant vegetables.

      All Americans should be reminded of this on Thanksgiving — a celebration by the European immigrants in honor of the native people, without whom they would not have survived.

    • July 5, 2014 at 11:46 pm

      Absolutely brilliant tweet, NW! Thank you so much for sharing it.

  6. July 5, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    ….But when your National team coaches look like they just came from Savile row

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

    ….and your biggest fan plays soccer with lions wearing Van Gils tailored suits……..I expect you to pull one out against Costa Rica.

    • 19 GGAIL
      July 5, 2014 at 10:30 pm

      Yes LP, the Coaches are pretty snazzy dressers.

      • July 5, 2014 at 10:48 pm

        I love the camera shots where they are all arms crossed & pissed until they finally score…..They looked great their first match against Spain, but after that each game has been a nail biter…. I’m conflicted who to root for now….4 powerhouses left, but no underdog. I think I’m going to pull for Argentina b/c I like Messi so much…..

  7. 21 hopefruit2
    July 5, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    Another fine essay zizi – and some great food for thought. The irony of celebrating 4th of July when the SCOTUS is busy eroding rights of employees and women….

    • July 5, 2014 at 9:52 pm

      Thanks. I’m despondent and feel the same anger Douglass must have felt in 1852 with all the parades and sham geegaws strewn on the streets.

  8. July 5, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Seems only appropriate to post this in your fine thread, zizi ….

  9. 26 Nerdy Wonka
    July 5, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    Hahahahaha…..this is cracking my timeline up. Someone is super drunk.

    The best part? No conservative comments in support. They’re all strangely silent.

  10. July 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    thank you zizi, for reminding us of a wonderful moment in American History because Mr. Douglass brought it.

    you are always on point.

  11. 32 desertflower
    July 5, 2014 at 9:57 pm

    How apropos…. MaydayPAC

  12. 33 GGAIL
    July 5, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    Very thought provoking zizi !

  13. 34 Nerdy Wonka
    July 5, 2014 at 10:00 pm
  14. 36 hopefruit2
    July 5, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    This basically resonates with zizi’s essay. A fourth of July parade – a public event, no doubt paid for and made possible through the use of public funds. Yet it’s a shameful display of hate speech and disrespect towards the country’s duly elected leader on America’s Independence Day.

    Where are the Mayor and other public officials of Nebraska? Why was this float even allowed in this parade in the first place.

    • 37 Layla
      July 5, 2014 at 10:09 pm

      From the article:’However, parade committee member Rick Konopasek told the Lincoln Journal-Star that the float wasn’t meant to be any more offensive than a political cartoon. He also said the outhouse float was the most popular one in the parade, and the three judges awarded it an honorable mention’

      • 38 hopefruit2
        July 5, 2014 at 10:15 pm

        “most popular” according to whom? The five RWNJ’s selected to “judge” the parade floats?

      • 41 cindysweatt
        July 5, 2014 at 11:44 pm

        This just makes me sick. I don’t know what I would have done if I had been there in person. I would probably be in jail. I am steaming mad.

    • July 5, 2014 at 11:50 pm

      Utterly despicable!!

  15. 43 Nerdy Wonka
    July 5, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    LOL.

    • 45 0388jojothecat
      July 5, 2014 at 10:29 pm

      I hope this blows up in Rinse Pubic’s face. “I Miss War; I miss double digit job loss; I miss W’s embarrassing overseas trips; I miss W’s incoherent speeches; I miss W..NOT”.

        • 47 anniebella
          July 5, 2014 at 11:12 pm

          I miss how W. ignored 9/11 warnings, I miss being lied to concerning Iraq war, I miss the President stand there and tell Americans that he wasn’t concern about getting Osama bin Laden. I miss seeing how American were treated like third world citizens after Hurricane Katrina, I miss losing 700,000 jobs a months, I miss the stock market being at 8000, I miss the financial crisis, the housing crisis, I miss having no good health insurance, I miss all the vacations of W. Sure Reince I miss W. What a dam idiot that Reince Priebus is. I am no fan of Michael Steele, but the GOP got rid of Steele and replace him with some thing like Reince Priebus.

  16. July 5, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    zizi, I think my first comment was eaten.

    once again, I thank you for an excellent essay. I remember the essay you wrote about comparing Newt to Douglass’ Master and how it was relevant to today.

    you are always on point.

  17. July 5, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Excellent, thoughtful and insightful essay, zizi2. Thank you for this powerful meditation and call to action.
    “….One of the worst things DEMOCRACY-loving Americans have failed to do is SPEAK UP LOUDLY and PERSISTENTLY, without fear, and FIGHT CONTINUOUSLY without PAUSE those who would do us harm. Douglass died after attending yet another event on Women’s Rights. He died fighting. What about us?…”
    You said it: “Gird up! Break out of fear…” Forward, together!

  18. 53 jackiegrumbacher
    July 5, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Zizi, thank you for bringing this great man’s words to us and making them real and alive today. I’ve come to rely on you to stretch our thinking and show us new ways to see ourselves in the world. American arrogance hasn’t changed in in the 238 years since 1776 or the 162 years since Douglas spoke the words you quoted. We still consider ourselves the “best” in world, still sneer at other less-enlightened or less ‘free’ countries, while we allow the dark forces of bigotry to control our judiciary, our US House, our state houses and worst of all, our minds. Occasionally we wake up as a nation, we fight back, win some battles, make progress forward and then slacken off, grow lazy and shut off our minds and our hearts. Douglas’s words were a call to wake up and actually “see” what was happening around us and that’s what we so desperately need today–a great trumpet sound, a cry so loud we can’t ignore it and a sense of urgency so great we force ourselves to action. Nothing can ever be thought to be won and over. We have to fight, fight again and fight some more. Thank you that cry from the heart. Magnificent and timely as always.

  19. July 5, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Let’s hope at least one of them reads zizi’s ‘call to arms’ ….
    https://twitter.com/Our4thEstate/status/485609568894857216

    #OWNthe114th

    Yes WE MUST

  20. 56 jackiegrumbacher
    July 5, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    Nerdy, can you check to see if my comment got lost somewhere. It was a reply to Zizi on her brilliant essay.

  21. 58 hopefruit2
    July 5, 2014 at 10:35 pm

    As they should be! :)

  22. 59 hopefruit2
    July 5, 2014 at 10:36 pm
  23. 60 jackiegrumbacher
    July 5, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    Zizi, if my comment to you gets lost for good, I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate your bringing the searing remarks of Frederick Douglas to us. Douglas was telling Americans of his time what they desperately needed to hear to shake them out of their complacency and hypocrisy. We need those words today because the fight never ends even if we get too lazy to keep up the battles. This week’s SCOTUS ruling showed us how desperately wrong things can go when stop fighting back. You’ve reminded us, in your usual eloquent way, that the job is never finished and we can never, ever surrender the field.

  24. 61 vcprezofan2
    July 5, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    Drat! Drat! Drat! Lost my answer to you just now, Zizi, because I lost connection when I clicked ‘post…’! I had to reboot the computer to get back online. Damn! I am way too ticked by this to even try to recover what I said. Thank you for sharing the excerpts of Douglass’ speech.

  25. 62 jackiegrumbacher
    July 5, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    All of my comments seem to be floating in cyberspace, so I’m giving up for tonight and will try again tomorrow. Have a good night all.

  26. 63 vcprezofan2
    July 5, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    I’ll be brief – Thanks, Zizi. I’ve lost two comments trying to share my honest reaction to your post, so I’m giving up. My laptop keeps jumping offline each time I click ‘post comment’, so I have to reboot the computer. Not sure what that’s all about. :( :( Not sure this non-comment will make it through.

  27. July 5, 2014 at 10:47 pm

    I’ve mentioned before that I’m doing my part to stimulate the economy, and was at Target today.

    Before last month, I hadn’t ventured into Target for a long time. It seemed to me that their prices weren’t especially good, and I doubted that I would shop much there.

    Today confirmed that for me.

    Two people (a man and a woman, both white) were at a booth they had set up at the entrance/exit to the shopping center which only has Target, Home Depot, Staples and a party store.

    Their booth was festooned with “IMPEACH OBAMA” posters, including one with a Hitler mustache.

    This CD voted for President Obama in both 2008 and 2012 (by a 10-point margin, 54-44 — our district lines changed in 2010 — we had been a reliably Republican CD [Cook Partisan Voter Index R+4]).

    I am a staunch supporter of First Amendment rights — these people have the right to voice whatever opinion they have, but I don’t recall any other President being openly depicted with a Hitler mustache, and that includes Nixon.

    Target is in the bullseye of the believers in white privilege versus everyone else. They don’t sell guns, yet they permit guns in their store, and it looks like RWNJs have taken Target and Home Depot under their wing.

    I didn’t confront them — since I’m not white, I wasn’t in the mood for hearing “Go back to where you came from.”

    • July 5, 2014 at 11:07 pm

      One other thing that really bothers me about this incident is that since 1923, the county that I live in (Ventura — LA exurbia) has voted for the candidate who won the Presidency in every election except for 1976 — it voted for Ford, not Carter), so I believe it is a bellwether county.

      The only other political booths I’ve ever seen outside of shopping venues are the Lyndon Larouche loonies, and I’ve lived here since the mid-1970s.

      This display was troubling in so many ways — the RWNJ have become unhinged from reality, their hatred trumps all.

      • 66 0388jojothecat
        July 5, 2014 at 11:52 pm

        Hi Arapahoe I am so sorry you had to see that ugliness. These people with the Impeach Obama signs and petitions are Larouchies. 2009 after PBO was elected there were these young people with petitions to Impeach PBO in front of my neighborhood grocery store. Pasadena is very much Obama country so much that you see cars with Obama/Biden bumper stickers 2008 and 2012. I asked them why they wanted to impeach Obama when he had just been elected. They gave me some nonsense so I asked who they were supporting to replace him and they said Lyndon LaRouche. I asked them, isn’t he still in prison then walked away. They gave the dirtiest looks. I think people complained and they were never seen around town.

    • 67 99ts
      July 6, 2014 at 1:04 am

      So sad what they are doing – my reaction (and I am white) would also be to stay away from confrontation – but I would write and call all the shops in the center and explain why I can no longer shop at their stores. When such ugliness and hate impacts the bottom line of associated businesses – they will look for a way to remove that hate from outside their stores.

      In my world (no 1st – or any – amendments) the center could have them evicted.

    • 68 jacquelineoboomer
      July 6, 2014 at 1:11 am

      The only way I think they could have set up their little hate stand in that location – private property – would be to get approval from whoever runs the shopping center. Might be a good idea to have some of your contacts in the area make some calls to complain. You may have already done this, but thought I’d mention. Agree that there was no need to confront them. That’s what they want. And you’ll never change their minds.

      You are the far better person, we ALL know that. Sorry you had to go through such an incident.

  28. July 5, 2014 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you, zizii, I am so deeply moved, I cannot find any words expressive enough to matter. Thank you..

  29. 72 anniebella
    July 5, 2014 at 11:19 pm

    Great job zizi.

  30. 73 vcprezofan2
    July 5, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    “I have no love for America as such; I have no patriotism. I have no country. What country have I? The institutions of this country do not recognize me as a man.” ~ Frederick Douglass

  31. 74 vcprezofan2
    July 5, 2014 at 11:22 pm

    O. Kay. Another comment of mine bites the dust. I’m going to bed. Maybe they’ll surface on another post.

  32. July 5, 2014 at 11:37 pm

    Zizi, thank you so much for this beautiful post.

    I’ve freed a bunch of frustrated TODers from spam/pending who wanted to reply.

    Checked and we had a troll here before using the name ‘Douglass’, so s/he was blocked – which, annoyingly, meant any comment containing the name was blocked too.

    I think I’ve sorted it, but not sure. The joys of WordPress :roll:

    • July 5, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      you are most welcome. Sorry it came in late. But I needed to get it off my chest today. It’s ok even if traffic here is light tonight. I can always reprise it or update it another day. The conservative horror show is here till we destroy it.

  33. July 6, 2014 at 12:05 am

    Thank you so much, Zizi, for yet another of your excellent Essays! I am also immensely grateful that you resurrected one of the most important speeches given by the great Black abolitionists, Frederick Douglass. Throughout his life, Frederick Douglass fought against slavery, racial discrimination, and gender discrimination.

  34. 79 sjterrid
    July 6, 2014 at 12:21 am

    Zizi, thank you for sharing Frederick Douglass’s 5th of July Speech. Yes, we have to make sure our voices are heard and we need to keep moving forward.

  35. 80 taiping1
    July 6, 2014 at 12:22 am

    I hit the post button instead of delete. The tumblr link above is to great gifts of our wonderful First Couple being playful.

    On a more serious note, thank you Zizi for this important post. We can never rest on our laurels. All the battles of the progressives on the early 20th century and of Civil Rights and Women’s Rights in the mud-20th need to be refought. Hopefully with the latest outrages people will form a united front and register, donate, and GOTV. Milt Shook has a new book out on why the Unicorn Brigade will never win and the importance of fighting for incremental change. Even blue dogs are better than GOP, vote with Dems 80-85% of the time.

  36. 81 jacquelineoboomer
    July 6, 2014 at 12:29 am

    zizi – Thank you very much for this piece. I’ve always admired Frederick Douglass, and shall read this thoroughly – for inspiration! It’s a profound tribute to him that you’ve brought him out of the history books, and reminded all of us that his message still resounds today.

  37. 82 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 12:51 am
  38. 83 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 1:23 am
  39. 85 jacquelineoboomer
    July 6, 2014 at 1:50 am

    I was strolling through the park one day …

  40. 90 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 2:07 am

    India will provide four new vaccines free of cost as part of a programme to reduce child mortality, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said.

    They include one for rotavirus, which kills thousands of children a year.

    The disease causes dehydration and severe diarrhoea. It spreads via contaminated hands and surfaces, and is common in Asia and Africa.

    The move brings to 13 the number of free vaccines provided against life threatening diseases.

    “The introduction of four new life-saving vaccines will play a key role in reducing childhood and infant mortality and morbidity in the country,” Mr Modi said in a statement.

    “Many of these vaccines are already available through private practitioners to those who can afford them. The government will now ensure that the benefits of vaccination reach all sections of society, regardless of social and economic status.”

    The four new vaccines will combat rotavirus, rubella, polio and Japanese encephalitis.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-28156436

  41. 91 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 2:29 am

    paging 57f. :)

  42. 92 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 2:46 am
  43. 93 jacquelineoboomer
    July 6, 2014 at 2:47 am

    Freakin’ liberals are so creative. And with this, I bid you a goodnight! :)

  44. 94 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 3:08 am
  45. 95 amk for obama
    July 6, 2014 at 3:39 am
  46. July 6, 2014 at 7:13 am

    What the Fuck? Seriously?

  47. July 6, 2014 at 7:48 am
  48. 99 Nena20409
    July 6, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    Awesome Essay Zizi2.

    Wow.

    Congrats to Doc Bobfr for his Au.


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