As millions of Americans celebrated the nation’s 246th birthday Monday, major media outlets and prominent liberals used the holiday to denigrate the US.

While contrarian put-downs of the land of the free are second nature to social media malcontents, even the likes of NPR and ESPN got in on the act this year — with the nation’s publicly funded broadcaster scrapping a reading of the Declaration of Independence and the self-proclaimed “Worldwide Leader in Sports” devoting prominent space on its website to a column bemoaning how America is “tearing itself apart.”

For 33 consecutive years, longtime NPR “Morning Edition” host Steve Inskeep celebrated July Fourth by reading out America’s founding document. That ritual came to an unceremonious end this year.

“This July 4th we break with tradition,” announced “Morning Edition” co-host Leila Fadel on Twitter Monday. “Instead of a reading of the Declaration of Independence @NPRinskeep examines what equality means and has meant in this document. Important segment about our past and future.”

“Many of our debates on this July 4th turn on what equality means. What voting rules really give equal access to the ballot? Do abortion laws give a woman equal control of her body? At what point is a fetus entitled to equal rights?” Inskeep asked during the 11-minute segment. 

Several celebrities said they won’t celebrate July 4 thanks to the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
James Keivom

The Supreme Court’s June 24 decision overturning Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that guaranteed women the right to an abortion nationwide, animated many anti-America statements and gestures — like the double birds flipped by Oscar-winning actress Jessica Chastain.

“Happy ‘Independence’ Day from me and my reproductive rights,” Chastain wrote on Twitter, adding a photo of her displaying both middle fingers to the camera.

Jessica Chastain
Actress Jessica Chastain posted a photo to Twitter captioned, “Happy ‘Independence’ Day from me and my reproductive rights.”

Other A-listers voiced similar sentiments about honoring the holiday in the wake of Roe v. Wade. Both Kim Kardashian and mom Kris Jenner shared a post to both their Instagram stories that read: “4th of July has been canceled due to a shortage of Independence. Sincerely, Women.”

Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) claimed on Twitter that this Fourth of July is “overshadowed by the dark reality of the Supreme Court’s decision that makes half of America less equal.”

“Instead of celebrations & BBQs, many are opting to do the most American thing they can do today: protest peacefully​,” she added. 

​​In that vein, ​Claudia Conway, the daughter of former Trump administration staffer Kellyanne Conway and political pundit George Conway, marched in an abortion rights protest in New Jersey and questioned why Americans should buy into “July 4 propaganda.”

​”We’re not free. Why should we be celebrating ​independence when not all of us have independence​. ​And that’s why we’re out here fighting for our reproductive rights, challenging the overturn of Roe v. Wade by the Supreme Court​,” she said. ​​

ESPN writer Howard Bryant penned his thoughts on the holiday in a column headlined “Baseball, barbecue and losing freedom this Fourth of July.”

Chairman Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) gives her opening statement during a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health hearing to discuss protecting scientific integrity in response to the coronavirus outbreak on Thursday, May 14, 2020
Rep. Anna Eshoo claimed on Twitter that this Fourth of July is “overshadowed by the dark reality of the Supreme Court’s decision that makes half of America less equal.”
Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

“It is Independence Day in America with independence under current and relentless assault,” Bryant wrote. “From Miranda rights to the environment, to the separation of church and state, to guns – so many guns – people are reeling. The U.S. Supreme Court has run a chain saw through what two generations of Americans had known to be the legal baselines of their lives.”

“Tens of millions of women today do not feel freedom and certainly are not celebrating independence. The people who can become pregnant who feel celebratory toward the Court may do so from the victory of their position, but it nevertheless remains true that the power of choice – and the right to privacy – has been taken from all of them,” he opined.

The City of Orlando spent the holiday weekend cleaning up its own mess after it released a newsletter on Friday about its planned Fourth of July celebrations that sparked a different type of fireworks.

Media personality Kim Kardashian poses backstage of the Jimmy Fallon show on Tuesday, June 21, 2022.
Kim Kardashian, as well as mom Kris Jenner, shared a post to her Instagram story that read: “4th of July has been canceled due to a shortage of Independence. Sincerely, Women.”
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

“A lot of people probably don’t want to celebrate our nation right now, and we can’t blame them. When there is so much division, hate and unrest, why on earth would you want to have a party celebrating it?”​ it said.​​

The city continued: “But in all seriousness, you know in your heart, Fourth of July fireworks are amazing, especially when you are standing in 90° heat, 100% humidity, next to 100,000 of your closest friends. In that moment, something takes over and we all become united in an inexplicable bond. Yes, America is in strife right now, but you know what … we already bought the fireworks.​”

​Orlando officials backtracked on Sunday after a deluge of criticism, including from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. 

​​”We understand these words offended some of our residents, which was not our intent,” the city said.

“We value the freedoms we have in this country and are thankful to the men and women who have fought and continue to fight for those,” the statement said. “We take pride in celebrating the 4th of July to express our gratitude to those men and women and honor the country we live in​.”​

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