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The Main Library Hosts Naturalization Ceremony For Dozens Of Immigrants

Yesterday marked a defining moment in the lives of dozens of new citizens as the Main Library hosted a massive American naturalization ceremony. Immigrants from varied cultures, countries, and backgrounds squeezed themselves into rows of folding chairs, waiting eagerly to swear the Oath of Allegiance and to finally and officially count themselves as American nationals.

During a brief question and response shortly after everyone was seated, it was discovered that one person in attendance had been waiting a whole 37 years for Americanization. Friends and family members of those ready to be sworn in sat eagerly in the back. Men, women, and children smiled proudly, snapping pictures of their loved ones as they took their first steps as Americans. Many of the library employees and patrons passing by stopped to admire the ceremony, everyone feeling a bit of patriotic pride.

Finally, after a bit of paperwork and introductory speeches, they were made to swear an oath to the United States by a council of appointed judges. They promised, with right hands opened and raised, to “defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” A pledge they all proudly and happily agreed to. It’s easy to forget how fortunate we are sometimes. As Americans, disenchantment and cynicism come naturally to us. That’s why it’s important, in a day and age where we all feel so bitter and divided, to look at the things that we can actually be happy and grateful for. Sometimes that can be as simple as taking a step back to look into the smiling faces of new citizens, beaming with the hope and the pride that we sometimes, ourselves, forget.

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