As one who has visited 40 foreign countries to absorb geography and civil and military history rather than sun on a beach, I can appreciate the Celebration of Cultures [article on Page AA2 of The Aegis May 22] in Bel Air and I regret having missed it. That said, I'd like to offer some suggestions that might make next year's Celebration more meaningful and valuable to all.
• However "confining, oppressive, restrictive, etc." some native-born and some foreign visitors may find our U.S. Constitution and core values, these are the keys that made our country different from whatever dictatorship, monarchy, tyranny or lack of opportunity that you or your ancestors fled – as did ours. If our America really displeases you or let you down, you are free to leave. We don't want to change it!
• It is that "American way" that made the U.S. spend millions of American lives and trillions of American dollars to free millions of oppressed people around the world and try to make their lives better.
• More interesting than "trying on a hijab" for an American might be the realization for a foreign visitor that in America it is not a crime to not to wear a hijab; not practice a particular or any religion, for that matter, or not to praise the "beloved leader."
• Though knowledge of foreign languages is useful and foreign scripts appear artistic, in a world where English is the language of all international air and marine pilots, presenters of scientific papers and many business deals, each and every resident of the U.S. should realize that the ability to read, write and speak intelligible English is a prime necessity for obtaining and holding a self- or family-supporting, family-feeding and family-housing job.
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