OUTRAGE erupted on Sunday after ex-Miss America Vanessa Williams sang the "black national anthem" at a July 4 concert for the overseas military.
Yesterday, Vanessa Williams closed the PBS Capitol Fourth show which was broadcast to members of the military who are based overseas.
She sang God Bless America, then closed with Lift Every Voice And Sing, a song that nods to Juneteeth becoming a federal holiday.
Williams, who was the first black woman to win the Miss America pageant, told the Associated Press about her choice to sing the anthem saying, "It’s in celebration of the wonderful opportunity that we now have to celebrate Juneteenth. So we are reflective of the times."
"We are reflective of the times and I’m happy to be part of a tremendous show that the producers are aware and willing to make the changes that have happened within the past year and a half," she continued.
However, her choice spoke outrage among viewers who dubbed the tune a "black national anthem."
One US veteran took to Twitter to express his outrage, saying "There is only one national anthem. This is segregationism pure and simple. Shame on @JoeBiden if he doesn’t demand an end to this racist activity."
Another shared, "I 100% refuse to recognize the black national anthem. We are one nation, under God and indivisible. There are no separate national anthems."
Others were questioning the need for a so-called "black national anthem," asking "It it possible to have a “Black National Anthem” and still expect to have unity?"
Another user responded to the song's nickname asking "Who’s singing the Asian and Latino ones?"
Still, others supported Williams' choice and the meaning behind it.
Pastor and public persona Talbert Swan spoke in solidarity with the former pageant queen, tweeting "Dear Racists, ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ was published in 1905, 116 yrs ago."
"Some of us choose not to sing a National Anthem whose 3rd stanza boasts about killing our ancestors: “No refuge could save the hireling and slave From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave.”
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