KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) – The journey to U.S. citizenship is one that took years for many, but Friday night more than 100 people took their citizenship oath in Knoxville.
There are so many special stories that make us all stop and think about what it means to be an American, and that’s especially true for those who have known life without the freedoms we often take for granted.
One couple came here after escaping from a country that’s about a hundred miles away on the map, but light years away politically.
Friday was the day Olga Alveres has been waiting on for decades.
“So happy. So happy.”
The native Cuban is now a naturalized U.S. Citizen. Her husband, Roberto, took the same oath last year. A huge moment for anyone, but for a man who escaped from Cuba after spending six years as a political prisoner, being an American family means everything.
Roberto Alveres says, “In this country if you work, nothing’s impossible.”
Hello? Democrats? Welfare Queens?
Celia Bright with University of Tennessee says, “In the 50’s we were full of optimism in Cuba. We thought that Fidel Castro would bring about democracy for our country.”
The speaker addressing the new citizens has literally been where Roberto and Olga have been. University of Tennessee lecturer Celia Bright left Cuba with her mother when she was eight years old. Her writings as a young child led to government accusations that her family was counter-revolutionary.
Bright says, “It was soon evident, after the revolution of 1959, that the political situation had deteriorated and personal freedoms were curtailed to the point that people feared for their lives and for the futures of their children.”
……Perhaps no other group that appears at a legal proceeding in front of a federal judge has this many smiles. Olga knows why people here are happy.
Olga Alveres says, “I’m free, I’m free. In the United States, everybody’s free!”
I would love to make a one-on-one trade with every single unappreciative, anti-American, nihilistic, leftwingnut ingrate, for people like Olga Alveres.