“Have you even read the United States constitution? I will gladly lend you my copy. Look for the words LIBERTY and EQUAL PROTECTION OF LAW.”
I am a first generation immigrant myself, I stood up and applauded Mr. Khan, he spoke for the soul of this country. This was the best speech in this Presidential election and the most necessary. This is what is at stake -the core value of this country is under threat by a man like Donald Trump, who has no understanding of the constitution he would swear to uphold.
The deeply personal nature of Khizr Khan’s speech added weight to his rebuke and left me in tears. I felt honor and admiration for a man I have never met. I could see and feel the pain and the grief in Mrs. Khan’s eyes, who stood silently beside her husband.
“This is our country too,” he said before his speech and he is right. The Khan family moved to the United States in 1980; I arrived in the USA in 1983. They moved from the United Arab Emirates; I left everything behind in Austria. They came here for a better life; I came here because I had fallen in love and had just married my American knight-in-shinning-armor.
They are American Muslims; I am an American agnostic -we are first generation Americans who stand up tall. They have darker skin -I am pale and freckled; they have black hair, and I am blonde (most of the time) and while we might have different backgrounds and different traditions, what unites us is the love for this country.
“You were not born here,” someone said to me once, and I looked at him, smiled and asked him what tribe his family was from? His ancestors had arrived here from Ireland; he didn’t say much after that, as a matter of fact, he didn’t talk to me at all anymore.
The United States of America has welcomed people from many different countries, races, and religions, all hoping to find freedom, a better life, and new opportunities. The metaphor MELTING POT is often used to describe our society and indeed, we are a fusion of different nationalities, cultures, and ethnicities.
Mr. Kahn, thank you. I needed to hear this -we all do.