Reflections on the Fourth of July – July 4, 2016

My words below were first published on AJC columnist Jay Bookman’s blog on July 4, 2016.

Another poster: “And it (Lennon’s ‘Imagine’) is anthemic, although I’ve never, not once, heard it played at any kind of sportsball event. . . .”

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Mary Elizabeth’s thoughts regarding that poster’s words:

“That is because many sports of competition with others foster the same bloodlust that the big/little boys play in war.  Killing becomes a legitimized way of ‘winning’ over another who is ‘weaker.’

Happy 4th of July to everyone on this blog.

Words closing the Atlanta Journal and Atlanta Constitution editorial on July 4, 1966, which I mentioned yesterday:

“The American mind, on this Independence Day, is being made up.  Undertaken at last is the great, neglected task of proving ‘that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable right, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.’

Each coming day now yields to each American the privilege of carrying that task forward to a final vindication of the ideal for which the Revolution was fought.

Jefferson could not call a stop to the ‘execrable commerce’ (slavery) in his day.  But the American people whose wisdom he trusted may now honor his faith in theirs.”

To me, honoring Jefferson’s faith in humanity transcends the ideas of slavery into a world brought from the Heavens into the words of John Lennon’s “Imagine,” a world envisioned of loving harmony toward one another in which there is no desire or need for war games.

ADDENDUM added on August 19, 2017:

The following are the words of another poster on the “Get Schooled” blog of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and my two posts which answer that poster’s remarks:

Another poster’s remarks:

“The mistake we make is not teaching our children the entire history. Yes, the civil war was fought, and yes there was slavery. We should encourage our children to learn about history with open minds. Many people have the wrong idea about the war. Slavery is wrong, but children should be taught that during that time, many people accepted this fact without looking into it fully. Now we should teach our children that the war is over. We should respect all people no matter what color their skin is or ethnicity. All blood is red. We all have the same basic needs. I think is is foolish to erase all of history. If we do not learn from history, we are doomed to repeat the same mistakes. The issue is education, and parents should teach their children respect, and compassion for all authority. Teachers should be objective in their instruction. Tearing down statues and changing names of streets will not change minds. Let us work on building bridges of understanding and love, forgiveness and respect for all. There are no superior races. We all need each other. The same goes for immigrants. They have contributed to this country, and should be allowed to have proper paperwork and stay especially if they have not disrespected the laws of this country. God bless this country.”
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Mary Elizabeth responds to the thoughts expressed by the above poster:

“I agree with your sentiments except for the fact that I believe these monuments – which do not simply present history but glorify the unjust cause of white supremacy – should be removed because the world is evolving continuously into higher consciousness, as I see it. Now in this 21st century, we must remove visual glorification of the unjust cause of the Civil War and slavery and a Jim Crow social system based on inequality of human beings. Teaching is one thing; glorification is another. We are now preparing our children and grandchildren to enter the 22nd century’s human consciousness in which America will have evolved to pointing the way to the world that people of all races and cultures can view each other as equals and work together to bring peace, love, and even survival to this planet. Please see my next post which will share the words of the editorial written in the Atlanta Constitution and Atlanta Journal on July 4, 1966, which embrace some of the thoughts that I have here shared. Publisher and editor Ralph McGill was still working at the Atlanta Constitution that time.
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“Words closing the Atlanta Journal and Atlanta Constitution editorial on July 4, 1966:

“The American mind, on this Independence Day, is being made up. Undertaken at last is the great, neglected task of proving ‘that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable right, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.’

Each coming day now yields to each American the privilege of carrying that task forward to a final vindication of the ideal for which the Revolution was fought.

Jefferson could not call a stop to the ‘execrable commerce’ (slavery) in his day. But the American people whose wisdom he trusted may now honor his faith in theirs.”

 

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