Whose Freedom Are We Really Celebrating on the 4th of July (OP-ED)

By: Miya Jones
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Whose Freedom Are We Really Celebrating on the 4th of July (OP-ED)

By Dearest Price

Twitter: @PriceDearest

Instagram: @dearestyprice

Facebook: Dearest Price

As I said in my essay Educational Plantation, “Let this be the teaching day to show what ideology you will play, teaching our children that they will never be ‘boss’, when it’s half of our race that is certainly lost.”

Today some will celebrate, the country we forgot to liberate. The land of the free, forgot to see me.

The term liberation is, “the act of setting someone free from imprisonment, slavery or oppression,” according to Webster’s dictionary. Yet by 1776, the year we coin to this glorious day, some 20 million Africans had been captured, transitioning them from human to property. Only about 400,000 made it alive to the British-controlled colonies, classifying the Middle Passage as one of the largest acts of genocide in all of history!

The home of the brave, has kept me their slave.

In 1661, Virginia laws made all indentured servants “slaves for life.” This decree would continue with the formation of the United States government. The ending of these atrocious acts would not be documented until some of the last individuals in bondage were freed in 1865 on a day we call Juneteenth. Sorry folks, this didn’t happen on July 4, 1776.

My country ‘tis of thee, where is your liberty?

This pseudo-freedom was followed by Reconstruction, Black Codes, Jim Crow, lynchings, the KKK, and most importantly, the chain gang, which became our revolving door back into slavery through the production of mass incarceration.

Land where my fathers died, emergence of Black Panther Pride.

Civil Rights, racial fights, Dr. King, let freedom ring. Malcolm X and Stokely too, Minister Farrakhan, could this be true?

We had fighters on the frontline, but in all actuality, none of them could liberate us from the now institutionalized fabric of Black oppression. These individuals made great strides, but the oppression would still rise.

From every mountainside, slavery would reign.

Now, Black women love food stamps more than their men. Public housing had us moving on down. Black exploitation made us their clown. Crack cocaine, the real white hope, 21 years to life for selling dope?

Today, we can’t even take a knee and serve the way God called us to be. There’s a repeat of history, putting brown babies in cages because you’re worried about Mexicans taking your wages?
So today I won’t camouflage, or serve my kids the 4 of July mirage.

About Dearest

Why Do Preachers Get a Bad Rap? (OP-ED)

Dearest Price grew up in Long Island, New York, North Babylon to be exact. She followed her passion for teaching, attending Howard University and later earning a history and africana studies degree from Stony Brook University. She went on to receive a Masters of Education from Arcadia University. Teaching for over 20 years in several inner-city public schools, including Philadelphia, Camden and Baltimore, she gained a reputation for her uniqueness. She wasn’t afraid to advocate for her children and social injustice. Walking her students home from school or helping parents with grocery shopping was commonplace and made her influential in the communities she served. Some of her accomplishments include being awarded Teacher of the Year in Camden, New Jersey, being honored for her teaching abilities by a State Senator, Founder of The Chainbreakers Project Inc., distinguished author of such works as “Disguised As God”, CEO of Agape Voice Publishing LLC, co-Owner of Black Line News, preacher at New Hope A.M.E. Zion Church, but most importantly, the mother of two dynamic children, Sun and Justice.

Miya Jones

Miya Jones

Miya Jones is a Long Island native and the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Shades of Long Island. She's been a journalist since the age of 17 and is a diversity advocate. Follow Miya on Instagram and Twitter: @miyajones1996 and on Facebook as Miya Jones.

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