There are many words that can be used to describe me but patriotic is not one of them. Although I am an American, I feel like this country’s machine is not out for my best interest as a Black man. With that said the 4th of July means nothing to me other than new outfit, BBQ sauce stained fingers, baked beans, coleslaw, potato salad, corn stuck between my teeth, & ambrosia salad.
Although the 4th and most other things related do not resonate with me, I can certainly appreciate and respect the feelings that others have for this date & the perceived significance.
Point in case, on the 4th of July, I worked to register voters at my town’s 4th of July parade. This was my first time registering voters & I must admit it was quite fun canvassing the crowd.
While I was working the crowd, I saw so many people decked out in red, white & blue. Most were waving flags, some had on costumes & the parade procession was very energetic.
For a minute while I was walking, I was thinking that maybe I am just being an asshole with my ‘sometimy’ feelings about this country. After I left the parade I reverted back to my original thoughts as I enjoyed a McRib. Maybe I reverted back because the celebration was over, maybe I am weak minded & cannot hold my own positions in a large crowd environment, maybe I am just caught up in my own shit?????
Anyway, there were many photographable sights but since I was so busy trying to register voters, I did not have time to pullout my camera. I was kinda bummed about that but oh well.
After the parade, I made a quick trip to Detroit to visit the Taste Fest (now called the City Fest). While there, I was inundated with eye candy/many photographable moments. There was a large variety of beautiful people, hot mess, performance art, and many things in between.
Of all of the images that I captured, the two images found in this post were my favorite. They capture the piece of African within me that I love & express. Then there is the piece of me that struggles with what it means to be an American Negro.
What say you? What does the 4th mean to you?