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Rep. Ben Cline Joins People in Roanoke to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

On Saturday, March 16, Representative Ben Cline (R-6th Dist), participated in Freedom First St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Downtown Roanoke. The mix of the Parade’s beauty and the warm weather created a joyful environment for people. As he does every year, Rep.Cline returned to Downtown Roanoke to engage and celebrate with the public and become a part of the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

Rep. Cline and his team shared the enjoyment and greetings from people as they walked through Downtown Roanoke and he showed and genuineness and ability to connect with people while he walked through Downtown from Jefferson St. all the way to Campbell Ave. and Williamson Rd. Former Roanoke City Mayor David Bowers, who is running for the Mayor’s seat as a Republican, joined Rep. Cline in the parade.

St. Patrick’s Day seems to be at least one event that has not been politicized in America. Between the participants and the observers, all races and ethnicities could be seen joyfully and peacefully filling Downtown Roanoke. There are not many events that have not been either defined politically to distract people or used to serve a political interest. Obviously, on St. Patrick’s Day people can celebrate without offending anyone.

As America being a beautiful diverse country, this should not be an excuse to waive the rules of living while respecting each other’s boundaries and borders. Generally, Americans are the most open-minded and tolerant to one another.

What was once an Irish religious event has clearly become an all-American celebration. In fact, to look back at the history of St. Patrick’s Day, it was only a celebration of the Irish people. But with the Irish immigrants bringing this celebration to America, it was adopted by all other races and ethnicities. Indeed, the uniqueness of America is observed in its diversity and humbleness.

Saturday’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration in Downtown Roanoke could be seen as a bridge connecting everyone. As the various groups paraded by with small gaps between each, a strong example of the diversity in America could be seen. Living in one community regardless of the differences and respecting each other’s space – this is what America is about.

The bright green color of St. Patrick’s Day with different groups of participants in Downtown Roanoke was a unique portrayal that many people enjoyed.

– Serwan Zangana supported Operation Iraqi Freedom as a U.S Army translator before coming to the U.S from Kurdistan, Iraq in 1997 to seek political asylum. He was granted asylum status and years later proudly became a U.S citizen. He currently serves as a correction officer in Roanoke.

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