Earlier in the day, Governor Kathy Hochul delivered remarks at the annual Fourth of July celebration and General Service Office Naturalization Ceremony.
SOUND of the event is available here.
PICTURES are available on the Governor’s Flickr page.
A quick transcript of the Governor’s remarks is available below:
Happy 4th of July. Yes indeed, it is. We are all Americans today, and we are celebrating the birth of the extraordinary experience known as America. And as proof today, the people sitting before me have come from all walks of life, from all corners of this earth, to join the family of not only Americans, but also the family of New Yorkers.
It is therefore a source of great pride for us. And I want to thank two people. First, Jeanette Moy, who did an amazing job. The burden of responsibility for managing all state facilities is extraordinary. She did an amazing job, Commissioner of General Services, Jeanette Moy. Let’s give him another round of applause. And our presiding justice today, the Honorable Kimberly O’Connor, Acting Justice of the Supreme Court. I want to thank her for her participation here today.
I had several levels of government before becoming governor. I’ve done countless immigration naturalization ceremonies, and I’ll tell you why I always want to come. Now is the time to renew our faith in our citizenship. We look at these people who have worked so hard to be here. It wasn’t just a birth accident. They were born elsewhere and faced extraordinary challenges to say, “I want to be an American citizen.” So, as we celebrate the birth of America on the 4th of July, we also celebrate these individuals as their rebirth as American citizens. So let’s give them all a round of applause.
And the experience of immigrants in this country has not always been easy. I’m not even saying it’s easy now. I think back to my grandparents who left extreme poverty, they had nothing when they came here as teenagers, and they had a whole new life ahead of them, but they had a lot of fear and uncertainty until they find a job. My grandfather made steel and raised his family, so his granddaughter could one day be governor of New York. It’s the dream of New York that we cherish here, the opportunity for each individual to come from a distant family, but they have to have that gene to take risks.
And that’s why America is so unique and special, because it’s so much easier to stay at home in the world, you know, even those circumstances can be tough, but saying, “I’m going around the world .I want to become a citizen in another country.I will go where no one in my family has gone before.You are the people we will rely on one day when you, like those before you, build this community. , build this state and build this country stronger than ever. We’re counting on you as leaders. We’ll help our next generation believe in the American dream again.
And it’s been a tough time, my friends. But we are not unique. There are challenges all over the world and there have always been challenges, since 1776. The common denominator is, however, that we always rise. We always win. We will always remain united in the belief that this is the greatest country on earth. That’s why we celebrate you. Your decision to join us all makes us stronger.
Bring your language, your culture, your traditions, your religions. This is what makes this state and this country so spectacular. So on behalf of New York, your new home, your new family, we welcome you and say to you all: Happy Birthday, New Americans. Congratulations to all. Congratulations.