Obama at Naturalization Ceremony: "The Truth Is, Being An American Is Hard"

|

Speaking at a naturalization ceremony earlier this week at the National Archives, President Obama said Americans "must resolve to always speak out against hatred and bigotry in all of its forms" against immigrants.

"We must resolve to always speak out against hatred and bigotry in all of its forms -- whether taunts against the child of an immigrant farmworker or threats against a Muslim shopkeeper," Obama said Tuesday. "We are Americans. Standing up for each other is what the values enshrined in the documents in this room compels us to do -– especially when it’s hard. Especially when it’s not convenient. That’s when it counts. That’s when it matters -- not when things are easy, but when things are hard."

"The truth is, being an American is hard," Obama said. "Being part of a democratic government is hard. Being a citizen is hard. It is a challenge. It’s supposed to be. There’s no respite from our ideals. All of us are called to live up to our expectations for ourselves -- not just when it’s convenient, but when it’s inconvenient. When it’s tough. When we’re afraid. The tension throughout our history between welcoming or rejecting the stranger, it’s about more than just immigration. It’s about the meaning of America, what kind of country do we want to be. It’s about the capacity of each generation to honor the creed as old as our founding: “E Pluribus Unum” -- that out of many, we are one."

Comment
Show commentsHide Comments

Latest Political Videos

Video Archives