Happy 4th of July, Las Vegas
—Remembering our History
By Katherine Duncan
Special to the Las Vegas Tribune
On the 4th of July, there are lots of controversies surrounding Black
Americans and celebrating Independence Day. So what is it about the
4th of July that former enslaved people have to celebrate? After all,
slavery was being practiced full-fledged in America when the
Declaration of Independence was created. Additionally, many of those
writers of the Declaration of Independence were slave-owners.
There have been many other days on which Blacks can and do celebrate
freedom from the atrocious slavery system such as January 1, the day
on which the American Emancipation Proclamation became effective. And
the Slavery Abolition Act of 1834, which they would celebrate on
There is Juneteenth (June 19th), which is now a national holiday. But
that’s not what July 4th is about. July 4th is not about freeing
Blacks from slavery; it is about gaining independence from the rule of
Britain, and in this instance, the Revolutionary War is what brought
about that Independence.
The color red in the American flag stands for the blood that was shed
to free the United States colonies from Britain, and the first blood
that was shed in the war was the blood of a Black man named
Christopher Attucks who was killed at the Capitol building.
As a matter of fact, every war that America has been engaged in has
had the participation of its Black people, whether they were citizens
or not. Blacks have always fought in every war that America has ever
had, even including the Revolutionary War and fighting on both sides
of the Civil War.
July 4th is the celebration of freeing Americans from Britain’s
tyranny, and remember: the first blood that was shed was by a Black
man at the Capitol, which started the Boston Massacre. Black blood has
since been shed in all other wars: World War I, World War II, the
Korean War, and you name it. We (Blacks) have been a major factor in
keeping America free, so yes, it’s important that Blacks also
celebrate the 4th of July because, after all, this is our country too.
Being in Boston on this day is especially significant because of the
activities that took place in Boston during the Revolutionary War, it
being the seat of the new government. The Boston massacre which took
place during that time resembles the activities that took place on
January 6th at the new capitol in that protesters and revolters threw
rocks and sticks, which soon ended up becoming gunshots leading to
loss of life.
The January 6th insurrection is similar to the revolt that happened at
the Boston massacre. However, back then the guards were punished and
not the protesters.
So while Black Lives Matter, and Juneteenth and the American Slave
Nation also have flags, the American Flag is a symbol of America’s
freedom, yet we must add that but for the involvement of African
Americans, it would certainly have had a different set of outcomes.
On this past 4th of July we may have watched the documentary “For Love
of Liberty,” but we are encouraged to watch it any time of the year to
fully understand and appreciate loyalty, valor, and patriotism.
Let’s hope we all properly celebrated!
Happy 4th of July, Las Vegas —Remembering our History
Happy 4th of July, Las Vegas