Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I Will Become an American

After watching the swearing-in of President Obama, I was in tears.

This is not about my admiration for Barack Obama even though I remain steadfast in my belief in his potential to become one of America's most inspiring and most accomplished Presidents.

This is about my admiration for the American people. This reflects my deep respect for a country that can rise above its historical failures and elect a President like Barack Obama.

I emigrated from Britain in 1985. During a trip to Britain in 1988, I came to a stark realization that I felt more at home in America. That is the key reason why I have chosen to live in America for over 20 year.

Yesterday, I felt so proud of the American people that I now want to become one of them.

There was a moment yesterday when I realized this. I noticed that I did not tear up during President Obama's inaugural speech even though I found it eloquent and moving.

I started crying during the singing of "The Star Spangled Banner."

The next time I tear up to that anthem, I want it to be at my swearing-in as an American citizen.


Anonymous Judy Kuszewski said...

Simon, I'm considering taking British citizenship myself, as I'm entitled to it (and don't have to give up my American citizenship for it, either).

However, one thing that's sort of been putting me off is the fact that I'd have to sing 'God Save the Queen' at these new citizenship ceremonies they now have. I couldn't do that with a straight face. I'll have to come up with some good comedy lyrics to make it bearable before I can countenance filing the paperwork.

9:09 AM  
Blogger Simon said...

That's hilarious. :)

I am psyched at the thought that we are both going down the path to become Anglo-Americans but from different directions.

See you in the middle - hopefully soon.

9:44 AM  
Anonymous Gino said...

There's some special poignancy here. The "rockets red glare" and the "bombs bursting in air" that inspired your tears were launched at Americans courtesy of the Brits.

Cribbed from Wikipedia: Baltimore's Fort McHenry is best known for its role in the War of 1812 when it successfully defended Baltimore Harbor from an attack by the British navy in the Chesapeake Bay, inspiring Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner".

2:21 PM  

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