Reflections on the 4th of July

Shoe Shine – © Martin Elkort – 1948

On the occasion of the American Bi-Centennial in 1897, Supreme Court Justices Thurgood Marshall and John T Morgan penned this reflection on the founding fathers and the state of the Union, as it was conceived and as it was in 1897.

“The men who gathered in Philadelphia in 1787 could not have envisioned these changes (in America.) They could not have imagined, nor would they have accepted, that the document they were drafting would one day be construed by a Supreme Court to which had been appointed a woman and the descendent of an African slave. “We the People” no longer enslave, but the credit does not belong to the framers. It belongs to those who refused to acquiesce in outdated notions of “liberty,” “justice,” and “equality,” and who strived to better them.”


The full text of this reflection can be found online.




Delmore Social Club – © Martin Elkort – 1947



Homeless Woman – Los Angeles – © Martin Elkort – 2001

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