Letter #7: Creating a More Perfect Union

April 6, 2021

Dear Trinity,

Only a couple of days left. I have been waiting for this day for months now. This is without question the most important week of my life…but not for the reason you may suspect.

It’s an important time for our nation. We are living in a unique moment during which I believe the very fabric of our democracy is in danger of being torn in two. You know that I have been quietly working with a courageous team of leaders to build a new path forward to protect and preserve the idea of America. This is a big week for those plans…and I’ll get to that in a minute. But that’s not why this week is so important to me.

This week is the most important week in my life for one reason and one reason only…because on Saturday, I get to marry the love of my life, your mom, and I get to officially become a father to you.

This letter is going to be a little bit different than the other letters I have written to you. I will get to the importance of our nation and how we can fix it, but I want to start this letter by making sure that you understand what is most important to me and why.

When I applied to the Stanford Graduate School of Business, I had to fill out a very nerve-wracking application that included essay questions that had stumped applicants year after year. The most difficult and harshly critiqued question that was asked was a seven-word question: What matters to you most and why? This question had caused applicants many sleepless nights. I can’t tell you how many versions of the answer to this question I drafted at the time — ripping out sheet after sheet in my notebook because I couldn’t create a statement that was “impressive enough.”

I’m laughing at myself a little bit right now as I write these words because I know that if I was asked to respond to that question today, my answer would be very simple:

“Mina and Trinity…because they taught me what authentic, unconditional, true love is.”

This has been a hard year for us. When hard times come, they have a way of forcing us to stop, take a deep breath and ask ourselves hard questions. Hard times help us get our priorities straight and figure out what’s important and what’s not so important.

For so many people across the country and around the world, this has been a really hard year. Many have lost loved ones. Many more have lost their livelihoods and their hope that things can get better. I think in many ways, our nation has been forced to stop, take a breath and start asking ourselves some hard questions.

Will our country be able to make it through this difficult, divisive time?

Can we work together to fight fear and hatred and find common, higher ground?

What does it even mean to be an American?

These are tough questions, but there are answers to be found. The long night will eventually come to an end. There is hope on the horizon…if we choose to do the hard work to chase it. It is in the striving for the answers to these tough questions that we will find healing, redemption — and ultimately — unity.

Today, my team and I are publicly unveiling the work that we have begun…an effort to help build what the Founders intended when they spoke of forming a More Perfect Union. We are creating a citizen-led movement that works to heal the divide in our nation and make our government work for the people. We are building a strong center in American politics that weakens the divisive voices that threaten to destroy us on both sides.

You are my purpose and drive behind this work, Trin. You’re the reason that I’m choosing to jump into this new fight. The idea of America is an idea in transformation…a promise offered with the power to bring lasting hope to the world if fully realized. But that idea is now in danger of being extinguished forever. To save it, we are going to have to fight for it, together. America is at a crossroads. We must now choose what path we will take forward. I choose to fight to make sure that you inherit a nation of dreams and possibilities…for you and for all who wear the American identity.

The work that we’ve started — the movement that millions of our fellow Americans will help build and lead in the coming years — is important work. But I want you to always remember that before the job, before the mission, before the calling…comes the reason. You and your mom will always be my reason.

Saturday is approaching quickly. As you know, this wedding has been cancelled three times. And now on this fourth attempt, the weather forecast is calling for an absolute downpour on Saturday. Life isn’t always fair, and nothing usually works the way it is supposed to. But you can’t always wait for the storm to stop before you take a chance and step out into the rain.

On Saturday, there will be a beautiful union. It may be just you, me, and your mom standing in the pouring rain saying, “I do.”

…but if so, the day will be filled with joy, and it will be perfect.

I love you,

Jake

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Jake Harriman

Entrepreneur & Marine Veteran. Founder of More Perfect Union & Nuru International. Proud dad & the luckiest husband. Believer in the idea of America.