245 years ago 13 colonies declared independence from the tyranny of British rule, based on the premise that all men are created equal. It is incumbent upon us as Americans, no matter the race or orientation, to bridge the gap between America’s stated ideals and it’s broken promises. To do this we must understand the full scope and breadth of America’s history and not just the white-washed sanitized version we’ve all grown accustomed to. While today we should celebrate the triumph of America, we also must not ignore the sin of Slavery, Jim Crow and the genocide of the Native People. We have to reconcile this because the past is connected to the present and to the future. Where we are today is a product of where we have been,and what we do today will determine where we go tomorrow. I am a proud Black American and a veteran that loves this country enough to speak truth to power and insist that we make this nation a truly united one. To do less would violate the very essence of the American spirit. Celebrate Independence Day but remember that the American revolution is not over yet. The fight for truth, justice and the promised American way is a burden we must all bear together as one.