Frederick Douglas was a prominent figure during the Abolition Movement and made strides in getting himself and others to freedom. He gave a speech titled, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” in Rochester, New York on July 5, 1852, that reminded Black people to not be fooled by America’s independence. In the speech, Douglas never referred to American independence as mine or ours, he continuously used the word yours. He stated, “The freedom gained is yours; and you, therefore, may properly celebrate this anniversary. The 4th of July is the first great fact in your nation’s history —the very ring—bolt in the chain of your yet undeveloped destiny.” Douglas knew that no matter what, this celebration would mean nothing to him because of the shackles that were still present around many slaves. Douglas knew the “disparity between” the free and the enslaved as he mentioned, “I am not included within this glorious occasion.”

There was no life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for Black people-only bondage. It was noted that the 4th of July should really be a day of mourning because America did not keep her promise that “all men are created equal…with certain unalienable rights.” This did not include Black people then, and in some cases, still does not include Black people today as we are still fighting some of the same fights our ancestors fought.

July 4th is recognized as America’s independence from Great Britain. The Continental Congress voted in favor of this independence on July 2nd, 1776, and two days later the Declaration of Independence was adopted from the 13 colonies, which was drafted by Thomas Jefferson. However, while America was free, Blacks were still enslaved. July 4th became a federal holiday in 1941, and is celebrated by many people every year through parades, fireworks, family gatherings, etc.

It wasn’t until January 1, 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared “that all persons held as slaves are and henceforward shall be free.” This was 87 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. For 87 years, Black people had to sit back, and watch America celebrate freedom but continued to enslave millions of people. Although the Emancipation Proclamation took effect in 1863, there were many states, including Texas, that still enslaved Blacks.

Tanesha Grant said, “The 4th of July was never about Black people,” and how we as a culture should continue to celebrate Juneteenth instead. She continued and said, “Juneteenth is just for us. As Black people, we are told we don’t deserve our own holidays rooted in our own history. Everything is whitewashed. Juneteenth is for us… Juneteenth symbolizes the hope that my children and grandchildren will be free. It’s Black Joy and Black tenacity to survive.” What she described is something that we as a culture have never experienced with the 4th of July.

In closing, Douglas also stated, “We have to do with the past only as we can make it useful to the present and to the future.” Learn from the past, never forget it, and make it count for now. So, how will you celebrate the 4th of July?



October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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