Day: April 23, 2017

No Better Place to Become a Citizen

Sometimes you find yourself in the right place at the right time. Last Wednesday I was in Arizona for work at the Petrified Forest National Park.  But first, a colleague and I attended a naturalization ceremony that the park hosted at the National Historic Landmark Painted Desert Inn for nine new citizens and their families and friends. It was Americana at its best.  No, it was more than that.  It was deeply moving as nine people made a life-changing decision to establish a new home in a new land. A local girl scout troop – with a diversity that “looked like America” – acted as the color guard.  The Honorable Deborah M. Fine, other federal officials, and Park Superintendent Brad Traver, made remarks that got to the heart of the privilege and responsibilities of citizenship.  Several speakers noted that there was no better place to become a U.S. citizen than a national park – America’s “best idea.”  A recording of America the Beautiful took your eyes to the desert and the spacious skies, bringing chills …