President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in June 1941, signed an that prohibited racial #discrimination by any government agency.
In January 1944, the Navy invited 16 #Black men to begin an accelerated two month program for Officer Candidate School. Prior to this, Blacks were allowed to enlist into the Navy as “mess men”, such as cooks and waiters whose chief function was to serve whites. They were not allowed to enlist into the Navy’s general service.
The Navy told 16 enlistees who were the sons and grandsons of slaves that they would attempt to integrate the officer corps. The goal was to prove wrong the prevailing wisdom, which held that Blacks were incapable of discipline and unworthy of rank. 👎🏽
The 16 candidates were still segregated during the program. After exams, the class average was 3.89; the highest average of any class in #Navy history. Without any information, only 13 of the 16 candidates were completed the program.
These men made history. Frank E. Sublett, the last living member of the group, died in 2006.
Inclusion matters. For more information about diversity and inclusion in Hollywood movies, TV and streaming content, and how to write and live inclusively, check out my book, “How To Write Inclusively: An Analysis & How To Guide.” As The Inclusive Screenwriter, I consider my works as a contribution to my craft.