Celebrating the Oath of Citizenship

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Courtesy photo

Last year's Citizens Ceremony in Portsmouth, before COVID-19. Susan Dromey Heeter is pictured at the event.


At a time when we are deluged with information, with news, with reports, I muse joyfully this July 4 on the Oath of Citizenship taken by those seeking to become U.S. citizens.

“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”

My July fourths generally involve attending a citizenships service, I bring Kleenex; I sit in awe and wonder of the journeys taken by so many.  I look around at families, at the tears, at the ceremony orchestrated and attended by so many.  I watch the Stars and Stripes take on new meaning.

Today, dear readers, I invite you to pause, to read the oath, to count your blessings, to bask in a beautiful country made only better by diversity, by welcoming, by understanding, by education, by love.

Stay safe. Vote.  Muse joyfully on life, liberty and your own pursuit of happiness.

Susan Dromey Heeter is a writer from Dover who recently let her hair go au natural white. Writing has been her passion since her English majoring days at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.  Dromey Heeter has lived in The Netherlands, Alaska and currently basks in all things New England, including the frigid winters. An avid swimmer, Dromey Heeter’s great passion is to bring back body surfing as most children have no idea how to ride waves without ridiculous boogie boards.

The opinions expressed are those of the writer. InDepthNH.org takes no position on politics, but welcomes diverse opinions. email nancywestnews@gmail.com

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