Mike Burke

What To The Slave Is The 4th of July

One-hundred-seventy-one Julys ago, the escaped slave-turned-orator-and-activist Frederick Douglass gave perhaps his most famous speech to a group of fellow abolitionists. He posed this question – what to the American slave is your Fourth of July? His address confronted the glaring hypocrisy of a day celebrating freedom in a country that still endorsed the bondage and forced labor of more than 1 in 8 of its residents.