With the way the media twists today’s news, it’s becoming increasingly easy to lose sight of the things that are important in this world.
As the Fourth of July holiday approaches, however, Americans everywhere find themselves shutting out that negative voice as they focus on celebrating both their freedom and their heritage.
I know because, as a naturalized citizen of America, I find myself doing the same.
“But Emmanuel,” you may say, “You weren’t born in America. Why does Independence Day mean so much to you?”
The answer, however, is simple.
I’m proud to be an American! Here’s why:
My Freedom Means Everything to Me
When natural-born Americans typically think of countries without freedom, what comes to mind are thoughts of communist areas where the government regulates each citizen’s every step. To me, however, freedom is a little more than that.
As a man born in Nigeria, Africa, where most families who begin poor stay poor due to bad leadership, seeing the ambition-oriented style of American culture, shocked me (and still does today).
I constantly find myself thankful that I could immigrate to the US and have the opportunity to pursue a life of comfort for myself, my family, and my loved ones, and most importantly, having the opportunity to give back to local communities in the US and Nigeria.
In Nigeria, that freedom, unfortunately, doesn’t exist for everyone. If your family is in the lower class when you are born, that means it has likely been poor for many years and will remain poor for many years more because of bad leadership. Something can be done.
In America, financial freedom permeates every orifice, and that is something I believe is gravely overlooked. Additionally, the opportunity that exists in the US is unlike anything that exists anywhere else in the world.
Only in America can you, as a person born into the lower class, set your mind to anything with the knowledge that eventually (so long as you don’t give up) you will accomplish it.
Even if you’re born poor, you can still attend the best colleges on scholarship.
Even if you have no money, you can visit other countries through sponsorships.
Even if you’re unable to see, hear, or talk, accommodations are made so that you may still live your best life.
In America, your disadvantages don’t matter. Regardless of whether you were dealt a bad hand at life, the American governance recognizes that everyone deserves a chance to pursue their calling.
Not only that, but they also make it possible to pursue that calling through the establishment of various government grants, allowances, and assistance.
Not to mention the liberty that America has! In many countries worldwide, walking down the street wearing a particular thing or having a specific last name is enough to be sentenced to death.
In America, however, citizens are protected by law enforcement dedicated to serving them so that no one may live in fear while simply walking down the street.
For these reasons (and so many more), I am proud to be able to call myself a naturalized American.
And to Americans, I have to say…
Happy birthday to America, our country.
God Bless America!
Written by: Emmanuel J. Osemota