Independence Day, For Some

declaration-wide

In 1852, former slave and legendary abolitionist Frederick Douglass was invited to give a speech at a 4th of July event to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

North Country Twit

michele bachmann

Tom Degan: Michele Bachmann maintains that the Founding Fathers ended slavery, huh? She is off by years. Four score and seven years, to be exact. She also pegged John Quincy Adams as one of “the very founders that wrote those documents.” He must have been quite the prodigy. When the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, 8 year old John Quincy Adams was one week shy of his ninth birthday!

The Founders Cared about the Majority Principle

james madison

Joyce Appleby: Senators are pondering partial reform of the filibuster, which is now routinely used to block Senate action. Historian Joyce Appleby suggests that if they want to bring the Senate in line with the founders’ original intent they might follow the lead of the Tea Party and go back to the beginning. In its early decades the U.S. Senate operated on the simple majority principle: no supermajorities, no filibusters.

The 4th of July

Clockwise: Frederick Douglass, Malia Obama, Thomas Jefferson, Ron Kovic

In 1852, legendary abolistionist and former slave Frederick Douglass  was asked to give a speech at an event commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  Known for his extraordinary oratory skills, that speech became one of his best known pieces and stands as a reminder that the 4th of July does not hold the […]

Tips for Celebrating the Fourth

fireworks

First off, get a jump on your neighbors. Don’t wait till Saturday, when “independence” will be so day-before-yesterday. Today, rush down to your neighborhood fireworks stand, grab a small family pack, and wait till dusk. Then go out to your driveway and light up a few to celebrate the 233rd anniversary the Congressional resolution of […]

Right-Wing Sedition

Abigail Adams

In 1798, during the Quasi-war with France, Congress, with President John Adams’ support, passed the Sedition Act. Outraged by attacks on her husband, Abigail Adams supported the act, which was opposed by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, among others. “Let us not establish a tyranny,” wrote an alarmed Alexander Hamilton to an ally in Congress. […]

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