Rep. Cori Bush took to Twitter to slam Independence Day celebrations, writing that it is a holiday for white people. She then added: “This land is stolen land and Black people still aren’t free.”
Bush, a member of the progressive “squad,” tweeted: “When they say that the 4th of July is about American freedom, remember this: the freedom they’re referring to is for white people.”
Last month, Bush used the signing of legislation making Juneteenth a federal holiday as an opportunity to call for reparations for slavery and defunding law enforcement.
Bush tweeted on June 17: “It’s Juneteenth AND reparations. It’s Juneteenth AND end police violence + the War on Drugs. It’s Juneteenth AND end housing + education apartheid. It’s Juneteenth AND teach the truth about white supremacy in our country. Black liberation in its totality must be prioritized.”
However, her July 4 tweet sparked backlash from both the right and left, with radio host Clay Travis writing: “You make $175k a year of taxpayer money to rip the country’s people that pay your salary. Show me any unfree country in the world where that’s possible. You can’t.”
Author and cultural critic Thomas Chatterton Williams responded: “I’m a 40-year-old American descendent of slaves. The year is 2021, and I have been ‘free’ my entire life.”
Georgia radio host Erick Erickson tweeted: “America is so awesome even people who aren’t free can get elected to the United States Congress! America F— Yeah!”
Rep. Maxine Waters also echoed Bush’s sentiment, and posted a tweet on Sunday dismissing the holiday.
“July 4th… & so, the Declaration of Independence says all men are created equal. Equal to what? What men? Only white men? Isn’t it something that they wrote this in 1776 when African Americans were enslaved? They weren’t thinking about us then, but we’re thinking about us now!” Walters wrote.
She posted a second tweet saying, “Further, the Dec. of Ind. says we hold these truths to be ‘self-evident’… yet: -17 states have enacted voter suppression laws -Supreme Court gutted Sec. 5 of the Voting Rights Act -George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Michael Brown, Sandra Bland, Tamir Rice. Need I say more?”
Echoing Bush’s sentiment, former MSNBC host Toure tweeted: “F–k Independence Day. Not only were we not free, the whole reason the Colonies wanted independence was because Britain was moving toward abolishing slavery. Why would Black people celebrate a day so wrapped up in our enslavement?”
Toure’s tweet included a link to an opinion piece he wrote for The Grio titled: “F–k Fourth of July: The only independence day I recognize is Juneteenth.”
Despite the criticisms, millions of Americans took part in the July 4 celebrations, including at the White House.
Sources: New York Post