Aldofo, A Neighbor Proud to Become an American Citizen

Good evening, hope all is well by you.

Two days ago, my wife of 52 years took off to my oldest son’s home to visit and to meet my youngest son’s woman friend. We are very pleased with this and the story behind all of this is long and too enduring to be told here.

However here is another story of a man and his family thriving in the US in his own business.

The day before my wife went to Chicago, my neighbor Aldofo asked if we would attend (along with his family) his swearing in as a US citizen. I said yes. Of course, I would not miss this even after dropping my wife off at Sky Harbor airport. It would mean I would have less sleep than normal, driving with less than spectacular eyes (surgery). Slowly gaining my vision back. The trip is an hour each way in good traffic. Got home, got 45 minutes of more sleep and took off to the Immigration Bldg. area near the airport. Arrived an hour and a half at 8:02 AM. I thought I would be late.

Why was this so important to me, us? Two years ago, we arrived in AZ to our new home. Two older silver-haired people. Aldofo, his wife (Mary), and five children came out to greet us. We were rapidly invited to their home across the road to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with them. A Mexican Thanksgiving meal intermingled with my wife’s stuffed shells and a desert (we left both for them). My wife and I are both half Italian. My mom was first born in the US and my dad’s family can be traced to a landing at the rock.

Aldofo did not know how to handle a ham. So, I took over and showed him the simple mechanics of quartering a sliced ham off the bone. They cooked a ham for us even with all the excellent home cooked Mexican food. The thought was there.

There was no way I would miss the ceremony of him becoming a citizen. Many of the men I served with were not US citizens. The path to citizenry is somewhat easier if they were still alive. The importance was still there. Aldofo took his journey to citizenry seriously and we talked about it from time to time. We were treated with undue respect as grandparents by his five children. An uncalled for honor. I talked to them about college and what were they going to do in the future. Maybe letters for me to write.

Being a minority has its limitations. Being Mexican in AZ? They are looked down upon although many of us enjoy their cheap labor. Ownership and being a citizen is more important to them than what comes naturally to most of us here on this site. So why do I write this?

Until Israel stops looking down at Palestinians, taking their land on the West Bank though colonization, restricting normal economic goods passage to The Gaza, charging more for necessities and essential needs such as water; there will always be conflict between Israel and radicals in Palestine. A much stronger Israel and Palestine (alphabetical order) can be obtained if one can resist radical beliefs and groups threatening both.

Hamas has achieved another generation of hatred by its horrific attack on Israelis and the subsequent punishment of innocent Palestinians. Netanyahu needs to leave. Leaving The Gaza unguarded was stupid in this old Sergeant’s estimation. His politics do not help Israel. His prejudices are real.

You may not like my commentary about a Mexican proud to become a US Citizen, the punishment of Palestinians due to Hamas attacks on Israel, and the “takings” of land. While the extent or height of violence does not to a similar extent exist in the US. The dislike of people who take pride in becoming a citizen is despicable as is the murder of the innocent by both sides. The US does have its own issues. Much of which can be overturned by economic opportunity which is withheld also.

Some are still proud to become one of us, an American Citizen. Adolfo was proud even with the prejudice shown towards him.

Sermon done. I need to go and pay some more attention to Angry Bear. Be safe!