This July 4th, many people think that celebrating America means waving the flag or standing up for the national anthem or shouting âAmerica Firstâ.
But that’s not true patriotism.
True patriotism means sacrificing for America to continue.
This means paying taxes in proportion to your wealth. I’m talking to you Jeff Bezos, and you, Elon Musk.
It means paying your workers a living wage so that they can thrive. I’m talking to you, Walmart, and you, McDonald’s.
It means taking full account of how racial oppression and white supremacy have shaped this nation, not whitewashing our history, and ignoring the continuing legacy of racism. I am speaking to you, the lawmakers trying to prevent students from learning about the role that race has played in our history.
True patriotism means protecting America’s democracy and our form of government, not trying to overturn an election that has been upheld by 60 federal courts and the Supreme Court – or seeking to take away the right to vote for people of color. I am addressing you, members of Congress who refused to certify the 2020 election, and you, state lawmakers who have brought forward nearly 400 voter suppression bills, and you – an elder.
True patriotism means not flooding our politics with big bucks, so that the voice of the people can be heard. I’m talking to you, Charles Koch, and you, Michael Bloomberg.
And that means putting our country’s interests ahead of partisanship, Mitch McConnell.
Finally, true patriotism means using your position of power in the media to inform and educate the public rather than arming lies and promoting extremism to get more clicks. I’m talking to you, Mark Zuckerberg, and to you, Rupert Murdoch.
On this July 4th, let’s commit ourselves to true patriotism. It’s not easy, but it’s the hard work we need to do to make this country a better place for everyone.