Hello, Friends. Happy Independence Day! How are you? I know lots of people are feeling conflicted about celebrating today. And I totally get it. Here’s some of what I’m seeing and hearing out there.

1- This man is one of several people who have explained they feel like they can’t celebrate freedom when we have so many asylum seekers in cages (many of them children!), and so many citizens sitting in jail cells for things like being too poor to pay $500 of bail, or for marijuana charges — a drug that’s now legal in many states. They are celebrating the idea or concept of freedom instead.

2- Several people I follow have said if you read one thing on the 4th of July, it should be this painful, necessary, infuriating read in the Atlantic titled “The Detention Camps at the Border Are a Crime.”

3- Poets.org helps us remember that America doesn’t always act as inclusively as we should.

4- This woman is reminding people that wherever you live in America, you are on land that was taken from native tribes and communities. She includes a link where you can look up the original peoples of your land. According the map, I’m living on land that belonged to the Chochenyo tribes.

5- George Takei, who knows what it means to be in an American concentration camp, wrote this today about cherishing the promise of America:

6- This essay by Frederik Douglass, titled “What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?” comes highly recommended as the best thing ever written about this holiday.

7- This man used to work overseas in counterterrorism, but now works in his hometown as a local cop. His focus today is on FDRs Four Freedoms.

8- You can find the Close The Camps patriotic pie here.

How are you feeling today? We watched fireworks last night, and then slept in this morning. We were originally planning to go to a local parade, but didn’t end up making it. (Oops!) No big plans for the rest of our day beyond watermelon and popsicles. : )

Before I sign off for the long weekend, here are a few things I’ve wanted to share:

-The best way to fight global warming? A new study suggests planting at least a trillion trees.

-Hah! Spicy snack power ratings.

-An activist was arrested for reciting a poem criticizing immigration policy.

Why plants don’t die from cancer.

What a Pediatrician Saw Inside a Border Patrol Warehouse.

A budgeting game for teens.

-“If Kentucky were a country, we’d say that it was receiving foreign aid on an almost inconceivable scale.” (NYT)

Tiny homes for sale on Amazon.

-I enjoyed this essay. Politics Is Changing; Why Aren’t the Pundits Who Cover It?

-Minnesota has a plan to pay residents to grow bee-friendly lawns.

-“With hardware, it’s easy to see how it’s affecting us or not fitting us, so it’s relatively easy to fix. What’s more concerning to me are algorithms being trained on highly biased male data sets.”

-The best! Enjoy this article written by Sue Bird about her girlfriend (and soccer mega-star) Megan Rapinoe.

I hope you have a really wonderful holiday weekend. I’ll meet you back here on Monday. I miss you already.

kisses,
Gabrielle