July 4th police protest echoes the spirit of resistance which founded America
Two hundred and forty-four years ago, our nation was founded on July 4th with the signing of the Declaration of Independence. A document which listed 27 grievances held by the colonies against the English king. It was signed by 56 white men who proclaimed, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Of those 56 men, 41 were slaveholders.
In the summer of 2020, Americans took to the streets to put into practice the writings of those same men from over two centuries earlier.
“That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
On this 4th of July, several hundred Kansas City residents rallied and peacefully marched the streets to protest police brutality and racial injustice. It was not the picnics, marching bands, and fireworks of the past. There was no laughter and no sense of nostalgia for the past. There was anger and determination for change. But in many ways, it seemed more in keeping with the spirit of the “rabble-rousers” who first signed the Declaration of Independence than were the holiday cookouts of our youth.
It was a truly American 4th of July.