Manuel Alvarez, Jr
Dear Editor, Times-Dispatch:
Each year I get to celebrate Independence Day twice. On June 30th I celebrate my independence day, and on July 4th I celebrate Americaʼs. This year is special, because it marks the 40th anniversary of my independence.
On June 30, 1968, I escaped Communist Cuba, and a few months later, I was in the United States to stay. That I happened to arrive in Richmond on Thanksgiving Day is just part of the story, but I digress.
I've thought a lot about the anniversary this year. The election-year rhetoric has made me think a lot about Cuba and what transpired there.
In the late 1950s, most Cubans thought Cuba needed a change, and they were right. So when a young leader came along, every Cuban was at least receptive. 'When the young leader spoke eloquently and passionately and denounced the old system, the press fell in love with him. They never questioned who his friends were or what he really believed in. When he said he would help the farmers and the poor and bring free medical care and education to all, everyone followed. When he said he would bring justice and equality to all, everyone said, 'Praise the Lord.' And when the young leader said, 'I will be for change and I'll bring you change,' everyone yelled, 'Viva Fidel!'
But nobody asked about the change, so by the time the executioner's guns went silent, the people's guns had been taken away. By the time everyone was equal, they were equally poor, hungry, and oppressed. By the time everyone received their free education, it was worth nothing. By the time the press noticed, it was too late, because they were now working for him. By the time the change was finally implemented, Cuba had been knocked down a couple of notches to Third-World status. By the time the change was over, more than a million people had taken to boats, rafts, and inner tubes. You can call those who made it ashore anywhere else in the world the most fortunate Cubans. And now I'm back to the beginning of my story.
Luckily, we would never fall in America for a young leader who promised change without asking: What change? How will you carry it out? What will it cost America?
Manuel Alvarez, Jr
I have been saying this for over a year now. But I have not said it with Mr. Alvarez's experience, but have spoken through the voice of experience of my father. Adolf Hitler or Fidel Castro . . . Barack Obama's rhetoric is identical. America, with Barack Obama's plan WE WILL quickly fall to 3rd World status. Mitt Romney repeated this warning over and over and was ignored, and yet now we stand with two men as our options for president. With Barack Obama there will be no America left when Mitt Romney becomes president. With John McCain there may be a semblance.
OR, we can stand up and be counted. Flood Congress and the Senate with phone calls, emails and faxes and make our voices be heard. We will not turn from the Constitution of the United States. We will not turn from the America hundreds of thousands of men and women died to give us. We will not embrace socialism or communism, but will ring the cry of democracy across the world.
But we must get up from the arm chair. We must step out from the fields. We must walk from the office buildings, malls and theaters, and we must come together as one voice . . . We are Americans and we will take this nation back if the government will accept its role as laid out by the Founding Fathers. We take to heart, and will fight to defend, the opening lines of the Constitution of the United States: "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
That is all our federal government is supposed to do, nothing else. Take a look at what the American government has evolved into. They have overstepped their boundaries when they refused to end our dependence on foreign oil. They have overstepped their boundaries when they come into our homes and tell us how to raise our children. They have overstepped their boundaries when they ignore the cry of the American people and refuse to secure our borders. They have overstepped their boundaries when they tax businesses into non-existence. They have overstepped their boundaries at every turn and in every home and business.
We will not throw our freedom away for comfort.
We will not throw our ability to choose away for a slick smile.
We will not sacrifice our children to the "government" for their education.
We will not become those countries we have struggled so hard to save.
We are Americans and we will no longer be quiet. If Washington, D.C. continues to ignore our wishes, then every single one of them must lose their jobs in November. If your Congressman is not defending the Constitution with every breath he takes, he must be tossed out of office. If your Senator will not secure our borders, return states rights to the states and approve the drilling for oil in our reserves, they must be tossed out of office. If Barack Obama wants to turn this nation into a federal government controlled nation, and he has plainly stated he does, send him home to Chicago. He's the last thing we need in Washington. An Obama presidency will destroy America, mark my words.
And if you don't believe me, trust those who have lived through it, like my father and Mr. Alvarez.