The opening of the Fourth of July weekend at the iconic Mount Rushmore ended with fireworks on Friday, after US President Donald Trump gave a speech lashing out at “left-wing mobs.” (July 4)
The Fourth of July holiday is usually filled with an air of joyous celebration — another reason to bring out the grill and have a great time with friends and family — but this year, some stars like Matthew McConaughey, Wale and Madonna are urging people to look critically at the holiday.
In light of Black Lives Matter protests and the coronavirus pandemic that has disproportionately impacted communities of color, Juneteenth has been raised as the country’s Independence Day as it commemorates when all enslaved people were free. Many argue that July 4 is a hypocritical celebration of freedom.
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In a Twitter video, McConaughey, donning a red, white and blue bandanna, wished the United States a happy 244th birthday and acknowledged the growing pains that have marked 2020.
“We is (sic) going through some growing pains in this one aren’t we? It is hotter in more ways than one, but growing pains are a good thing because how the hell else are we going to grow up?” McConaughey said.
The 50-year-old actor encouraged people to reflect and ask themselves how they can be better whether it comes to being “fair” or wearing a mask.
“We individually make these changes that’s how we make a collective change, that’s how we get to next year’s birthday and birthdays beyond that. And we start partying again, looking around and saying ‘Oh yeah, we always got work to do. We never arrived, but we improved,” McConaughey said in the video.
Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger shared a video message of hope amid the coronavirus pandemic, protests calling for racial equality and loss of jobs.
“Happy birthday, America. Thank you for letting me live the American Dream. We must fight every day to make sure that dream is as true for a Black child born in Minneapolis as it was for a white bodybuilder born in Austria,” he captioned his video.
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Madonna shared a video of actor Daveed Diggs asking, “What to my people is the Fourth of July? My people who are failed every day by every country.” The video showed images and clips of Black pain and Black joy including a kneeling Colin Kaepernick and footage of police brutality.
“The 4th of July is a lie,” Madonna captioned the video.
Grammy-nominated rapper Wale also tweeted that today was not a holiday and called out institutions for being performative.
“Performative bare minimum ytpipo give us everything but what needs to be done .We gettin killed in broad daylight and they pander us wit things nobody asked for .401 years of guilt is eating away at folks so ignore Elijah Breonna George etc becuz cartoon voice acting is the prob,” he wrote.
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