We celebrate today with many historical and political challenges to overcome. Many
people have concluded that since July 4, 1776 represents the day our nation gained its
independence from British rule, we should celebrate.
It is also clear to many people who are here today that July 4 was never intended to
be celebrated by all who live in America. In fact, it would be another 87 years before slaves
would gain their freedom in America.
Freedom does not stop there in America. There is a third date associated with
freedom. Not all slaves were given the news of their new freedom; it was not until June 19,
1865 that former slaves in Texas received the news of their freedom.
There are lessons to be learned from these examples of freedom.
• Everyone should fight for their freedom
• Everyone should be allowed the opportunity to be free
• Freedom delayed is not freedom denied