This short, fast-paced video will give you a brief overview of the contributions, the heroism, and the dedication to excellence that African-Americans have brought to the United States Navy over the years.
You will see that today, blacks make up 18.5 percent of the Navy and serve in every rating and at every level of the enlisted and officer ranks. It is an impressive minute and forty seconds of information.
In today’s military, the old questions of segregated troops, and even the denial of the right for African-Americans to serve in the military are part of the past. Americans of every race, creed, and color, from every section of the country and the economy serve side-by-side today. That is not to say that problems do not exist, but no one today doubts the equally important and equally valued quality of dedication, the courage under fire of all who serve.
African-Americans have served in all of our nation’s wars. But in our 20th Century history, it took an Executive Order signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to allow the active recruitment of blacks into the Army to fight in WWII.
In those early years, both the Army and the Marine Corps, continued the then current practices of segregation. It was President Harry S. Truman that ordered the integration of all the services. And over the course of the last 80 years African-Americans have contributed heavily in blood and treasure to the defense of this nation.
The Veterans Site honors the service of all those African-Americans who have willingly and courageously fought, suffered, and died to defend this country. We stand behind all efforts to improve access to all ranks and leadership opportunities. More importantly, we hope for that day that Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed about, when no one will “be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
We give our respect and our thanks to all our African-American brothers and sisters who have served and who continue to serve in the United States Navy, and all the other services.
Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site Blog.