Monday, July 5, 2010

Food for Thought: Independence Day 2010

Happy 4th of July to all. I know, I'm a few days late but I've been inebriated and everywhere accept home for the past 3 or 4 days so please excuse my tardiness. Although many people, like the crew I was partying and having fun with all weekend, simply use this holiday as another excuse to cook out, watch/light fireworks (legally or illegally), party and drink, a friend of mine inspired me to think about the day a little bit deeper. The legal separation of the colonies from Great Britain actually occurred on July 2, 1776 instead of July 4th. Then the actual signing of the Declaration of Independence wasn't actually completed by all the of the politicians until August 2nd, almost a month later. Furthermore, my African ancestors were still slaves in much of the nation and even after being emancipated in 1865, still didn't check that, didn't fight, strive and die for anything resembling freedom until centuries after the Declaration of Independence. However, I didn't let the details put a damper on my holiday mood. I decided that I think think all Americans - no matter their race, gender, religion, etc - should use the date as a symbol to celebrate their independence whenever or however it was achieved. Part of the beauty of America is that it is a smorgasbord of ethnicities, backgrounds, and subcultures; all of whom have their own stories of the struggle for independence and acceptance. Close your eyes and try to imagine the "typical American" and I guarantee it's gonna b a combination of a lot of different images. So as much as I can complain about the plight of the young Black man trying to make it in America and my desire to see the world, I can't really see myself living anywhere else. Food for Thought...