Sixty-two years ago July 4th was on a Saturday, just as it is this year. On Friday, July 3rd 1953, I was sworn in as an American citizen at the Houston Federal Courthouse in ceremonies attended by close to a thousand people, including guests and host organizations. After the speeches and the Oath of Citizenship, the DAR and American Legion Posts served cookies and drinks.
I had never heard of the DAR and the American Legion before and their sincere welcoming us as new citizens touched me. Encouraged by their apparent care and consideration, I asked for and received help from the American Legion to start a Citizenship School to teach applicants for citizenship the history and founding principles of the United States. Thousands graduated from our Americans By Choice Citizenship School to become well-informed citizens of our country and we taught them in English, the language that held this nation together since its creation.
When the DAR found out about my background they persuaded me to start talking to their chapters about the evils of socialism. I am a survivor of oppression and persecution both by the National Socialism of Adolf Hitler and International Socialism of Joseph Stalin. For almost twenty years I was a speaker warning about communism, which is the rough ridge of the of the smooth socialist iceberg. Of the many honors I received I am most proud of this Americanism Medal awarded to me by the DAR. The first time this medal was bestowed on a foreign born American.
As soon as I received my Certificate of Naturalization on that Friday afternoon, my late wife and I drove home. We picked up our two boys, citizens by birth by-the-way, and loaded them into our station wagon. We drove all afternoon and finally by evening we arrived at Del Rio on the Mexican border.
Before checking in to the motel we drove across the bridge to Mexico and made a U-turn and came back. The Immigration Inspector walked over to our car stopped at the barrier and asked: “Are you American citizens?”
“Yes, we are since noon today.”
He was quite surprised by the answer and asked: “What do you mean? Please explain.”
I was ready for the answer. “We have lived in the United States since 1947 and nobody ever asked us if we were American citizens. Now that we are proud citizens we had to find someone who would ask us and this was the best solution we found.” Then I showed him our brand new Naturalization Certificate and he congratulated us for being the newest citizens ever to cross the border.
I was proud to be able to say that I was an American. Some Americans may not appreciate or understand, but it is of enormous significance to us Americans by Choice.
We are the ones who feel a lump in our throat when our flag goes by and watch in horror the indifference and demeaning behavior of some Americans around us. We know flag etiquette and watch with nausea as merchandise is hawked on TV by a pitchman dressed in a flag. We, who have lost our freedoms once, understand and appreciate freedom and the responsibility that this country provides.
I fear for my country. This is not the same country I proudly adopted in 1953. All that we Americans by Choice can ask you Americans by the accident of birth is to wake up before it is too late. Take back our country to integrity and patriotism. We must do so because we are in mortal danger from enemies within and around the globe.
I am here to tell you some good news. I did find directions and leadership for what has to be done. I found it in the Declaration of Independence. Let me read it to you and see if you hear the same directions as our founding fathers heard in 1776. Let me remind you that they were a much smaller minority in favor of independence than those of us today seeking new directions for our country.
The founders of this country believed that Governments derive their powers from the consent of the governed, which to me means that the Government works for us and not that we work for the Government.
It further declares that the role of Government is to use its powers to assure the Safety and Happiness of the People and if the Government fails to do so it is the Right of the People to alter it or to abolish it.
Do you feel safe and happy with what politicians are doing in Washington?
The Declaration is clear about what has to be done. The time has come to exercise the right of the people to alter or abolish a Government that has failed. In today’s language: Throw the bums out!
We cannot stand silently by while the Constitution is destroyed. We cannot stand quietly when the sacrifices of patriots past are dismissed and denied. We cannot stand still while this great nation is systematically dismantled
The republic that was the United States of America must be fully and completely restored, with the U.S. Constitution upheld as the rule of law. We will accept nothing less. To do so we may all have to do what our Founders had to do: “mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”