Speech for Naturalization Ceremony – Albuquerque, NM

Heather WilsonRemarks by The Honorable Heather Wilson
Former Member of Congress
Naturalization Ceremony
Convention Center, Albuquerque, New Mexico
March 5, 2010

It’s such a pleasure to be with you to celebrate this wonderful day in your lives. Let me be one of the first to welcome you as America’s newest citizens. Many Americans take this gift of citizenship for granted. Many of us are here because our forefathers, at some point, made the choice you just made.

We didn’t have to pass a test, or know the Constitution, or demonstrate that we can speak English. You’ve made a choice. You waited. You worked hard. You studied. And now, as someone told me at a previous nationalization ceremony, you get to have a second birthday: the day you became an American. And from now on, when someone asks you your nationality, you can smile and say those wonderful words, “I’m an American.”

Over 230 years ago, a sparsely populated collection of colonies on the edge of a vast continent embarked on an experiment in self-government that was not expected to succeed. Men and some women who had a great deal to lose pledged everything they had – their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor – to secure liberty and prove that a people could govern themselves. Many of those men who signed the declaration of independence did lose their lives, and their fortunes, and their families to secure our liberty. But none of them – not one – ever turned their back on their pledge. They never lost their honor.

These founding Americans were some of the first to let go of their past in order to build a new future. You are some of the most recent.
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Wisdom of the day

conscience angel devil“On some positions, Cowardice asks the question, “Is it safe?” Expediency asks the question, “Is it politic?” And Vanity comes along and asks the question, “Is it popular?” But Conscience asks the question “Is it right?” And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must do it because Conscience tells him it is right. ” Dr Martin Luther King, Jr.

Veteran's Day 2008

It seems too few people know the history of Veteran’s Day. While dedicated to the memory of fallen soldiers, the date was selected because on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, a defeated Germany signed the armistice ending four years of a horrible war. President Wilson called WW1 “the War to end all wars.”

Sadly, wars have not ended. WW2, Korea, Vietnam, and Iraq have reminded Americans of the sacrifice made by our military.

On this solemn day, we salute you and we thank you.

Some other good sites are here and here and here.

I Voted Today

Whatever you political, economic, social, or ethnic affiliation, make sure you vote.

I am in favor of informed, thoughful voters. However, you forfeit your right to complain when you fail to vote. Don’t sit on the sidelines and complain. Get involved.

Vote today!

The Right To Vote

My last post sparked quite bit of discussion on an oblique topic; does a Right to vote exist? The email traffic was also filled with statements that essentially said, “I don’t want any more Conservatives to vote,” and “I don’t want any more Liberals to vote.”

Is there a Right to vote? To fully answer such a question requires the definition of almost every term in the debate. Is their a legal right to vote? While not enumerated as such in the Constitution, I believe the answer is yes. Is there a philosophical right to vote? Again, I think yes. This is a much deeper discussion involving the legal, social and philosophical background of the founding of America as well as the French Revolution. In this tiny space I merely offer my opinion that a right to vote exists in the fabric of the American soul.

The best dissent came from my friend and fellow blogger Eric at Self-Composed. We met through StumbleUpon, the social blogging network, and quickly enjoyed exchanging information and personal insights. Besides, Eric lives in Hawaii which has vaulted him to epic status in my pantheon of blogger friends.

He has has touched a nerve where I confess I do not have a simple answer. His post, Voting Is Not A Right, is a must read in my opinion. What about the lazy, uninformed, uneducated, nearly senseless voters of our day? Often, these voters are labeled the Undecided. Here is a particularly pithy section:

“Voting is serious business and it should be left to serious people who are already invested and engaged. If someone needs to be bribed, cajoled, begged, or pleaded with before they’ll get off their dead ass and go register, they shouldn’t be involved in the political process. If someone needs to track them down and stick a registration form in their face and give them a pep talk, they shouldn’t be voting.”

As always, there are bigger issues in our country than the candidates for the two major parties and Eric has raised one. Questions of vision and what we want out country to be like abound. While the election is, in some sense, about which candidate can best deliver those things, Eric is correct in pointing out that voters should be educated and informed.

Laziness in Democracy eventually leads to tyranny.

They Have Lost Their Minds!

The Federal Government is going to bailout AIG and Fannie/Freddie. This is nightmare. Is this even legal? President Bush, McCain, Obama, Senators, Representatives have all lost their minds!

It is important to understand exactly what is happening. The government is using your money to buy the bad assets of various companies.  Yes, they are calling it a loan. No, the loans will never be repaid because the underlying assets are not worth anything. How do I know? If they were worth anything the company would not be in trouble in the first place!

This is an inflationary nightmare that encourages thievery and/or mismanagement by corporate insiders and just postpones the inevitable bubble that MUST take place. Have any of these goofballs ever even read about the basic principles of economics? Automakers will be next and eventually it will make its way into inefficient technology companies. Higher taxes, bigger debt and higher interest soon to follow.

Besides, who gave anyone permission to spend my tax dollars in a bailout of this sort?  Michelle Malkin calls it the Death of Fiscal Conservatism. Newsmakers says Get Ready for an Enormous Tax Bill.

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not. Thomas Jefferson

A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess of the public treasury. From that time on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. Sir Alexander Fraser Tyler

“When a self-governing people confer upon their government the power to take from some and give to others, the process will not stop until the last bone of the last taxpayer is picked bare.” Kershner’s First Law.