article was written by Peter Ferrara, an associate professor of law at
the George Mason University School of Law, and a member of the Board of
Scholars of the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, an education and
research organization headquartered in Potomac Falls, Virginia. He has
graciously granted the right to reproduce the article, provided the
author and his affiliations are cited. The article has been edited in
the version you have. See the original article here: http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/comment-ferrara092501.shtml
You probably missed it
in the rush of news last week, but there was actually a report that
someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper an offer of a reward to
anyone who killed an American, any American.
"An American is English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German, Spanish,
Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican,
African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or
Arab, or Pakistani or Afghan. "
An American may also be a ! Comanche,
Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navaho, Apache, Seminole or one of the many
other tribes known as Native Americans.
An American is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim.
In fact, there are more Muslims in America than in Afghanistan. The only
difference is that in America they are free to worship as each of them
An American is also free to believe in no religion. For that he will
answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to
speak for the government and for God.
An American lives in the most prosperous land in the history of the world.
The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of
Independence, which recognizes the God given right of each person to the
pursuit of happiness.
An American is generous. Americans have helped out just about every other
nation in the world in their time of need, never asking a thing in return.
When Afghanistan was over-run by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans
came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their
As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other
nation ! to the poor in Afghanistan. Americans welcome the best of
everything...the best products, the best books, the best music, the best
food, the best services. But they also welcome the least.
The national symbol of America, The Statue of Liberty, welcomes your tired
and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless,
tempest tossed. These in fact are the people who built America.
Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11,
2001 earning a better life for their families. It's been told that the
World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 different countries,
cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the
So you can try to kill an American if you must. Hitler did. So did General
Tojo, and Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung, and other blood-thirsty tyrants in the
world. But, in doing so you would just be killing yourself. Because
Americans are not a particular people from a particular place. They are
the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that
spirit, everywhere, is an American.