Proclamation 5530 -- Ethnic American Day, 1986

 

September 20, 1986

 

By the President of the United States of America

 

A Proclamation

 

Americans are a unique people, a colorful tapestry of traditions and cultures woven into one vibrant society. The motto graven on our coins -- E Pluribus Unum -- reflects the rich diversity from which America draws its strength and vitality.

 

Since the founding of our Republic more than 200 years ago, millions of immigrants have made the journey of freedom to our shores. America has drawn the stoutest hearts from every corner of the globe, from every Nation on earth. Some came to escape the chains of religious persecution, others to flee the bonds of political oppression, and still others came seeking a land of opportunity, the chance to begin life anew. Some of the most recent have scaled walls and crawled under barbed wire and through mine fields, while others risked their lives in makeshift boats on perilous seas.

 

No matter how they came, today they are all Americans who take pride in the traditions of their ancestral homeland while at the same time dedicating themselves wholeheartedly to the principles for which our Nation stands. They now are taking their full and rightful place in America's social and political life. Their contributions are legion in every area of endeavor: science, the arts, medicine, business, government, sports, religion, and the media. The efforts of ethnic Americans in bolstering the values of faith, freedom, family, work, and country have served to strengthen the fabric of our national life and have made America a culturally richer and more vibrant land in which to live.

 

The Congress, by Public Law 99 - 206, has designated September 21, 1986, as ``Ethnic American Day'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this event.

 

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim September 21, 1986, as Ethnic American Day. I call upon the people of the United States to acknowledge and advance mutual understanding and friendship among all Americans regardless of their ethnicity.

 

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of September, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eleventh.

 

Ronald Reagan

 

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 2:47 p.m., September 23, 1986]

 

Note: The proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on September 22.