Vision Statement: Our mission is to reawaken the genuine American spirit of living in a good, great, and growing nation of free individuals.
Mission Statement: We uphold American Liberty, prosperity, constitutional law, and humble government.
We Owe Immigrants Our Gratitude and Homage — for Their Unique Gifts
Robert Russell Jr. — Editorial
Robert Russell Jr. is the founder of R.R. & Associates, a group that promotes conservative causes throughout America. Robert has been working intensely this year with Religion and Society, the foundation that publishes the St. Croix Review, and has brought us fresh view and a wealth of enthusiasm.
In 1966, Angus MacDonald, an Australian by birth and an immigrant to America, discovered Stillwater, Minnesota. He had completed his life-long journey to find his personal paradise, at last!
Angus MacDonald was an American citizen, a Ph.D. graduate of Columbia University, an ordained Christian minister, a published and recognized scholar, and writer, a husband and father — and also a man whose life from birth to adulthood in Australia had given him a unique richness he was ready to give to his adopted nation.
Angus spent the remainder of his life presenting that gift, to the thousands of his fellow Americans with whom he became a friend, teacher, philosopher and neighbor.
Some 80 million individuals from all corners of the globe preceded and succeeded Angus via a similar path. They presented their own gifts from their native soils and peoples to their adopted land. Together, they represent one of America’s strongest building blocks. And together we have built the most unique society ever known in human history. It began with the first ship landing at Plymouth through the newcomers who officially became citizens yesterday in a local American courthouse.
Representatives of all peoples of the world are now “we Americans.” They’ve given us their languages, ethnicities, talents, skills, hopes, dreams, and customs. Yet in a very real sense, “we’ve only just begun.”
We who read these words are the fortunate inheritors of those millions of “gifts of selves” that each immigrant has added to the melting pot called simply “America.”
Angus MacDonald lived the role of such an American. He was recorded as a “naturalized” American. We enclose the word, “naturalized” in quotations. The word, American, is left without. Because . . .
We are one people — Immigrants and their unique contributions to the Liberties that preserve America.
Immigration, one of America’s most important issues and constant needs, has become something of a mystery, an unwanted obligation, or you-name-the-negative-force in today’s America. Its focus has been the American/Mexican border since the late 1980s, or early 1990s, with little attention to the peoples immigrating from elsewhere in the world, other than those with ill-intent from Middle Eastern nations.
When we Americans celebrated our Nation’s 200th Anniversary in 1976, there were supreme celebrations, especially in July, and focused on Independence Day. The central celebration took place in Philadelphia, featuring a fourteen-hour parade of representatives from the fifty states, through the heart of the city. Over two million Americans came to experience the event. Marian Anderson, an operatic soprano of the day, famous the world over — a black American — sang the National Anthem in its official rendering at Independence Hall.
Marian was the first black American to sing for such a prestigious national event. It vibrated, all across America. Her singing was a culmination of America’s intention to make equality for all a reality in America.
For Americans who are dedicated to integration, Miss Anderson’s performance was an exhilarating moment, never to be forgotten. It flashed across all TV screens. It made the front page of all the newspapers. Together we rejoiced in her achievement.
On that same day some fifteen million Americans lined the main streets of Philadelphia for the great parade. Each state’s segment was a parade unto itself. High school bands had been selected to march — and they rehearsed for an entire year before the celebration. Celebrities from each state rode on platforms-on-wheels. Historic tableaus floated down the route, each more beautiful than the next. The millions of Americans along the parade route sang and applauded, shed tears of joy and sadness as well — and we were all lined up together, people from everywhere, being friends with Americans from everywhere — all cheering.
Temperatures neared 100 degrees. A thunderstorm slowed the parade’s pace for a short while. But the show never stopped, nor did the joy and love of country.
We live in a time when such events and achievements receive little attention or respect. In today’s American parlance, they are “past things” that need not be done anymore, because in the words of the Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, “We aren’t going to make America great again. America was never that great.”
Today we have riots and marches endlessly across America. There are endless protests reflecting the new style of American politics — a politics of accusation that sees America as an oppressing nation in history of the world.
This is not the occasion to discuss the influences that have put Americans in this awkward national position. We should identify them and consciously go about eradicating them.
It is the time to remind ourselves who we are, who Founded our nation and why, and who, after the Founding, put down stakes to live, grow, learn, love, get educated, build, succeed, prosper, build a family, educate and train the family, enjoy the family, enjoy the resulting prosperity and accomplishment — to look back and say: American Liberty made this possible.
We have sadly put American Liberty down the list of importance, and focused most of our attention on that which ails us: the wrong thinking; crude ideas; dissipating intentions and habits; greed for greed’s sake; and reduction of humanity to animalistic existences around the world.
For most of us, our personal observations tell us these negative influences are not in our own backyards. “They’re in the news and on TV but not right here.” Wrong. Most of us live all too near these terrible influences: influences all too often associated with a nationality that is not American. This contrived America is a repudiation of America and American Liberty.
Simply stated, we must return to the American traditions experienced and exemplified during America’s first 200 years. Not the least was our welcoming of all peoples, from all nations and backgrounds and races, to the nation that will celebrate its revitalization in 2026. The historic greatness and traditions of American immigration must be the focus.
The Impact of American Immigration
Immigration has not “saved” America. Immigration has “fed” America.
Immigrants have arrived on our shores bringing faiths, traditions, hopes, experiences, proven ways of doing things, languages, arts, traditions, music, theatre, sports, arenas, architecture, recipes, crops, farming methods, raw materials, traditions, literature, sayings, folk tales. This is the list of good that never will end. Nor should it! This is the list that depends on one critical centerpiece: a fellow human being, an immigrant, a hopeful new American who sees and yearns for American Liberty. One who has a new love affair with the rule of law and a free economy.
The immigrant desperately hopes to contribute whatever he or she can to strengthen that living prize called Liberty, a privileged jewel shared by each and every American, ultimately gaining it for himself. He soon discovers that Americans on every street in every town will welcome his hopes and dreams and the things in their lives from their home country that bred their hopes and dreams for Liberty.
Suffice it to say that the moment they land on American soil and begin their quest for American citizenship, immigrants begin to contribute their values to the great volume of American Visions of Liberty, just as did our Founders. In each immigrant there is a magic, a new spark, and another ounce of strength bolstering American Liberty as each one becomes “an offspring of the Founders,” a dedicated American.
As we prepare to celebrate 250 years as the nation called the United States of America, we recognize anew the great value of Liberty. It is a new value to the immigrant. A continual flow of immigrants seeking American Citizenship and Liberty will guarantee that American Liberty is a new idea. Our obligation is to preserve it as such. Our obligation is to preserve the flow of eager immigrants seeking it more than they seek life itself.
Thus, American immigrants continue to become our future and to re-awaken us about protecting and ever-strengthening our greatest gift: American Liberty. *
Remembering the Missile Crisis and the Recognition of Civil Rights
Robert E. Russell, Jr.
Robert E. Russell, Jr. has been associated with conservative organizations, such as Heritage Foundation, Hillsdale College, Heartland Institute, the Philadelphia Society, etc. for decades. He is the President of Robert Russell & Associates.
Where does Castro’s demise fit into our history, and how important was his influence?
While Fidel Castro’s passing is not at the news level of the Romney-Trump reconciliation, it nonetheless, as Trump himself iterated, influences much more than simply the American – Cuban relationship, or lack thereof.
In a few months, we will mark the 55th year after the Bay of Pigs. If you’re not familiar with all that was represented in that defensive/offensive move on America’s part, find the truth about it. It was the finale of something called the Cuban Missile Crisis. The Soviet Union had placed an arsenal of atomic warheads, all on stationery rockets, aimed at the United States. Being only 90 miles from our shores, this was hardly a calm moment for all those who lived within the “3,000 mile radius,” which meant that they lived within the distinct possibility of being blown to shreds by one or more of those weapons.
The reason this happened can be boiled down to the fact that when Castro took over a few years prior, he began jailing, killing, and otherwise reducing citizens to little or nothing if they countered any of his complete Communistic moves. He was successful. He was a total dictator, patterning himself after Nikita Khrushchev, Premier of the Soviet Union. So, when it looked like the U.S. was going to do something about this, Khrushchev became his adopted Siamese Twin, and together they assembled armament around the island, just in case we were going to pull some tricks on them.
Note this: There never had been a totally subjected population to Communism in the Western Hemisphere prior to this.
And note this: By 1961, thousands of Cubans had fled from Cuba to the U.S. in vessels as small as the lids of garbage cans, because hundreds of thousands had been slaughtered by Castro’s sycophant agents in ways worse than we’ve seen with ISIS in our time and age.
And note this: If you lived in the 3,000 mile radius, you were alerted by billboards, TV, radio, and loudspeakers everywhere to load the trunk of your car with enough fresh water and food to last you and your family for a week; blankets for sleeping outside; maps for escaping by whatever routes you would be alerted to escape. You were alerted to keep your radio and TV on constantly for further notice. All police, firemen, and other public defenders were put on permanent 24-hour duty. If you happened to be in these areas of the U.S. (check for yourself to see how much of the country was threatened), you were anything but calm.
Because these things were taking place, President John F. Kennedy, a Democrat, had to make the final decision: We either go for the jugular or risk losing millions of Americans, destroying significant resources of our country, and making it possible for the Soviets and Cubans together to occupy some (or more?) of our country.
No threat like this, since the Revolution, had ever taken place. And even in the Revolution, we would have not lost in an instant. Atomic warfare is instantaneous! Everything fine in one minute. Everything and everyone gone in the next minute.
I was there!
I am a proud Veteran of the United States Military Forces, U.S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC), to be exact. Check it out. I think you will understand the significance of this message when you do. (Understanding of course that since 1961, our public education curricula have excluded most of the threatening essence of events like this one that have taken place in all history, which this man thinks is the primary reason people don’t give much importance to what has happened in Cuba this week. Many of our fellow citizens think that remembering such threats is hooey in this day and age. “Black Lives Matter” has become more important.)
Well, again, checking out my Military Occupational Specialty (MOS), you might learn that the CIC assignments given us in those days (early ’60s) involved America’s heavy concern with integration and the elimination of segregation, regardless of why either one had not taken place. The “hate idea” appeared in isolated incidents. But by and large, throughout the South, particularly, the intent was far more focused on each and every one being equal, period. We achieved that for a few years, more in the South than in the North. Yes, those two divisions are still with us: The South has paid more attention to the true goals of what we were trying to do then than the North.
Imagine living and being stationed in the mid-South, and all these things happening at exactly the same time in history.
A daring young Negro man named James Meredith somehow was positioned to be the first non-Caucasian student seeking entrance to the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss). The University granted him admission. When he arrived on campus all hell broke loose. Thousands of roustabouts from all over the U.S. appeared to help locals fight his entrance. Over 40 people lost their lives in this chaos. (Most of the shooters were from everywhere but the state of Mississippi, most from northern states. Check the press from those days. You’ll find the truth.)
Regardless, the U.S. Defense Department ordered 20,000 troops onto active duty at Ole Miss immediately. We stood on the streets of Memphis, Tennessee, the closest large population location, in the middle of the night watching troops that had been flown in to the nearby Naval Air Station being trucked through the city and down the road to Oxford, Mississippi, to control the mob fights that were taking place.
If you lived in the 3,000-mile radius, this was a devastating set-back: two threats at one time. Each occasion, both the missile crisis and the mob violence, created an enormous mountain to climb for an assigned U.S. Military specialist.
In this man’s view, many incredible battles were fought, won, with “permanent results” (only for the moment) very long ago. This occurred less than one month after the Bay of Pigs.
This old geezer stood on the sidewalks of Memphis at midnight, watching my fellow Memphians with tears streaming down their faces, hating the idea that such a thing had happened.
A month prior, I’d watched most Memphians with tears streaming down their faces loading up the trunks of their cars as instructed.
And today we worry about . . . . Color. . . . Private lives . . . while excusing elected officials for throwing their obligatory modus operandi in the wastebasket . . . excusing public schools for altering history to avoid what is written here . . . and never mention that religious faith is important . . . or, in many — too many — cases, that human life is not important.
From a person who is simply an average American, someone who has lived here in America for nearly eight decades, someone who is mystified why we humans cannot take the time, consult the honest scholars, and think about what we learn, in order to see our society properly. This would include a good bit of Bible study, of course — the Founders acknowledged it, as they should have.
If you read between the lines this has nothing to do with the persona, per se. It has everything to do with “making America great again,” an honest and worthy objective for every one of us.
If you’ve read this far, I thank you. It’s been jumping around in my head and heart for a very long time. *