Senator Tammy Duckworth our Servicemembers blacks deserve better military bases after the Confederate officers Named

John Brown Gordon was an American hero. The slaveholder and says Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan, Gordon said his nation during the Civil War, used as a Confederate general from service and its location then elite Georgia to improvise white supremacy, long after the ‘last ball of the war had been fired. And today, the US continues to honor his memory military weapons. Halfway between Savannah and Atlanta, Fort Gordon is a military training base for American soldiers who have sworn to defend the Constitution against all enemies of the category in the United States, the man who holds the name on the base of the front gate plastered . But it is not only Fort Gordon. In total there are 10 officers Confederates called bases of the US Army, which leads the sickening irony that we training generations serving Black to basics celebrating asked the traitors who have tried to keep their ancestors in chains. When I was just starting my career in the army trained on one of these bases, Fort Rucker, although I did not think at the time behind the name quite the history. And ‘long, long past time for a change. In this time of national accounts with the American blacks pain together for everyone feels bare to see, when peaceful demonstrators that the life of a black man is in each of us is important to say, the courage to push tear gas risk prod and even pull our nation to live closer to the words of our Pledge of allegiance: that in this republic is freedom and justice for all. the more perfect union of our founders dreamed achievement will require systemic, structural changes. Many of these changes may not be easy. But other means are so obvious, so simple, that the fact that they have not yet done is proof of how our country faced ready to American blacks injustices every day, has been to ignore. One of these steps forward to ensure that the armed forces protect us from foreign and domestic enemies does not pay to indulge the same enemies. That is, rename these 10 bases, 10 rebaptized with the names of the many, many heroic troops of the diversity in our history that defends this nation so brave, as well as our people have done evil. We dedicate this basis with the likes of Tuskegee Airmen and Buffalo Soldiers caliber, or in the case of Fort Rucker, an Army Aviation Center to dedicate it to the new service, which actually received a medal of honor for helicopter operations, as Rodney Yano. And we must also ensure that other types of business that must somehow still not banned in publicly display the Confederate battle flag, the Marines and Navy, as follow. As an institution that boast the greatest meritocracy is upon me, our military to honor a commitment to stop those who have believed that a person deserves that their skin-secessionists was defined shadows to win the label of traitor chose instead to lose the label of slave owners. This is not “erase” history tried in spite of what some, including the president, can boast. Like many other families living in Virginia during the Civil War period, my family was fighting for the South not to divide the historical fault line, with some of my ancestors to the north and others. We ‘important that we remember our history, we learn that once again the same dark corners help us avoid throwing lessons. But our story to remember is not to defend those who defended slavery-a lesson Trump would do well to remember the next time that threatened a raise for our troops on this subject to the veto. rename these bases and the public display of the Confederate battle flag ends not only the right way to take in the interest of our national identity, it is the right way for our national security. In the unity of military cohesion it is often the difference between life and death. It certainly was for me the day in Iraq, a fluke by the enemy almost killed me before my safe friends dragged me, and the same goes for many other services, since George Washington crossed the Delaware. As the commander of the Marine Corps wrote to explain why the USMC the public display of Confederate battle flags would ban, there is a risk of such symbols crashing cohesion “that the struggle needs.” Go to the Marine Corps describe as “the only one that must Warfighting team whose members come from all walks of life and work side by side,” says this flag “is to inflame the feelings of the division of power has shown. I can not have the division in our body. “he knows how I, American security are intertwined than to defend American values ​​and defend. He understands that when it comes to one and protect our nation addressing systemic injustice to all of us to do the right thing and doing the smart thing and the same. Our Black Servicemembers and all our service-deserve better than this. Just like every American alive today whose great-great-great-grandparents treated as if they were only three-fifths of a person. Like all those who gathered and marched together and sore in recent weeks their channel devastation, in fact, working to create a future that are no longer defined by bias yesterday. Changing our country for the better will not be easy. But, and this step forward, there is no rational reason not easy.
Picture copyright by Chris Seward AP