Last week, I had the privilege of attending a Naturalization Ceremony. If you have never had the opportunity to be there when immigrants to our country take the oath of citizenship and exchange their Green Cards for their Naturalization Certificates, you are missing out on one of those special things that makes the United States of America a truly great place to be. Looking out across the crowd you can see people who began their lives in the far corners of the world sitting beside one another without regard for gender, race or national origin. It matters little where they came from, whether or not they once lived on one side of some armed border or the other, today they are Americans and the old hatreds, if not forgotten, are at least set aside. On that day, they are united in their desire to join in our great experiment, to offer their descendents to the great American melting pot in the hopes that they will blend seamlessly into the fabric of our nation in the same way that we, the descendants of so many who made that journey before them, have done. The stories they tell are often powerful. We often think they come to our shores simply for freedom and to take advantage of the economic opportunity our country offers, but often they are here because we are an island of peace in a terrible world and because they have endured horrors that would keep most of us awake at night if we spent too long thinking about them. At the ceremony I attended the speaker, a young man from Rwanda, told of his childhood experiences hiding in a thorn bush to avoid being murdered and of walking over corpses so thick on the ground that he could not avoid stepping on them as he sought to escape his war ravaged land. Other people have spoken to me about poverty, hopelessness and, worst of all, what happens when your own government institutes a reign of terror and people begin to vanish. Such was the case in Argentina in the mid 1970s and, although the reign of terror is now ended and the situation improved, one icon of those times still strikes fear into the populace whenever it appears: the otherwise unremarkable Ford Falcon. In 1961, Ford sent two examples of their recently introduced Falcon to Argentina in order to help their factory in La Boca set up a production line.
This article has been curated from On Peace, Freedom And The Fearsome Reputation Of The Ford Falcon