Monthly Archives: April 2009

You make me feel like a naturalized … citizen

My decision to finally become an American, after living in this country for more than two decades as a resident alien, was based on two factors: Marriage and terrorism.

These two things are not connected, by the way, though some wags would consider marriage a form of terrorism. And it’s certainly been proven that fear of terrorism can lead to some unholy alliances.

For me, though, they were quite separate issues.
I married an American three years ago, and said gringo thought it might be a good idea for tax reasons. Apparently, non-citizens don’t have quite the same inheritance rights as y’all red-blooded Americans.

As for the terrorism part, after 9/11 the INS got swallowed up by the Department of  Homeland Security. Soon, rumors began to float around about Green Cards changing. Mine had no expiration date, as befits a permanent resident of 1989 vintage, but it looked like I was going to have to give that up, goofy picture and all.

Besides, while I realized Sweden will likely not join the Axis of Evil anytime soon, I feared what would happen when “Mamma Mia” finally wore out its welcome.

Living in a country and having no vote, even if it meant actually showing up for jury duty, was no longer an option. And so, almost exactly a year ago, I applied to become a citizen of this fine nation.

Let me tell you all about my journey.

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