A year ago this week, a group of scholars, leaders and activists – mostly Blacks – gathered to defend the founding of our country, inaugurating a movement we called the 1776 Unites.

We chose “1776” because it has always been the year of our nation’s true founding, and “united” because our founding values ​​always had the potential to bring all Americans together – despite the current state of toxic polarization.

At the time, the catalyst for the gathering was the New York Times 1619 project, which stated that “our founding ideals of freedom and equality were false when they were written,” and that America’s promises were in bad faith from the beginning. .

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That proposal – which eventually went back by its author – threw gasoline on the fire of partition in our country. Today, the project itself has faded so much in the rearview mirror that I don’t want to waste any more time discussing it.

Although the progressive left insists that black Americans are unable to advance themselves without enlightened whites, I am persuaded that we have a degree of moral authority that has not been equal since the height of our nation Have been able to do. civil rights movement. Images of black victims – captured decades ago on television and today on cell phones – have once again opened the ears of the nation for us to hear. The question is: what would Black Americans say?

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The craze, nihilists, and most of all “Wake” insist that black Americans should use the list of America’s sins advertised as descendants of slaves, which sound like music from an old radio era. They claim their right to look carefully at a list that lists only the perceived shortcomings of white supremacy and capitalism; Never the decline in religiosity or the decay of families, which are the real sources of the problems facing all Americans.

The role of black Americans in this country, he insists, is being virtuous of America, forever reminding the country of its failures. If we really have to define ourselves by failure to remove the sins of our country, then so be it.

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A year ago, this week, a group of Black Americans stood together to reject this play list. We reject the idea that the only service that blacks provide for our country is as a prophet of despair.

We proclaimed to all those who listen to this despite America and have always been flawed – and isn’t the nation honest? – We have a proud heritage that is worth celebrating and a future that is worth building together.

Even after bringing all the last 12 months, I still believe as much as I did today. Black Americans have a lot more to do than to constantly scold America and say no.

I believe from the bottom of my heart that America belongs to Black Americans more than anyone else. Yes, many of us have suffered a lot, but the fiery trial of those sufferings has brought about a kind of resilience and what I like to call “radical grace”, which would have the power to show our entire nation the way forward. is. It contains the real moral authority of Black America today.

Black Americans within us have given America the power to show the way out of this hopeless, undeniable polarization that benefits from our division and anger.

Just two weeks ago, Woodson Center, the parent organization of the 1776 Unites, launched the Voice of Black Mothers United, which gives voice to mothers who have lost children to street violence. Over the years I have worked with incredible women like these, I have seen examples of forgiveness and redemption that are not surprisingly few.

Not only have these women found a way to live after unimaginable losses, but they have also come together to strengthen and support each other. In addition, some of them accompany their children’s killers as well! If a mother who has experienced life’s greatest tragedy can make herself a minister for the person who murdered her child, does America want to address our imperfections as well as a shared future? Can not build?

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Black Americans, who have historically opposed racism and oppression on the basis of our families and communities believing in one God who believes in the red, drive America out of this hopeless, nihilistic polarization within us The power to show, which benefits us from our division and anger. Our 1776 Universe Curriculum – which has been downloaded nearly 8,000 times as of this writing – describes how black Americans faced unimaginable persecution not only to survive but to thrive and overcome.

Historian Paul Johnson stated that “all nations are born in war, conquest and crime.” The unique dilemma for Americans has always been how to reconcile our lofty ideals with their imperfect implementation. Wok wants us to say that the flaws in our country make our entire national project useless. They see no way to redemption; Therefore, they want to destroy and destroy it.

The message from 1776 Unites is that our lack of perfection does not prohibit us from doing so and celebrates what is good and great.

America remains the most successful, prosperous multiracial society in history. We have never been a perfect union, but we are always striving to be more perfect today than yesterday. And this belief – practiced by Americans of all races – is our best path.

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