Bruce O'Hagan Springsteen may have been born in the USA but he has never forgotten where he came from. That would be Italy, Ireland and Holland where his forefathers sailed from to come to America.
Yesterday on Ellis Island he landed a blow for all immigrants when he accepted the Ellis Island medal and lashed out at anti immigrant sentiment.
"I am proud to be here today as another hopeful wanderer, a son of Italy, of Ireland and of Holland - and to wish God's grace, safe passage and good fortune to those who are crossing our borders today - and to give thanks to those who have come before whose journey, courage and sacrifice made me an American."
Beautifully spoken as you might expect from the Boss and a poke in the eye for all those anti-immigrant advocates who trot out the Springsteen anthem 'Born in the USA' at their anti -immigrant rallies.
Springsteen however, knows instinctively what immigration has meant to America and what a powerful force for good it has been. His songs echo that sense of roots and identity that he holds so dear.
During the ceremony he proudly hugged his mother, Adele, daughter of an Italian immigrant who lived to 100 but never spoke English. 'So much for assimilation' he joked.
His own mother is now 85. She married an Irish and Dutch American named Douglas Springsteen. Douglas' mother was Martha Ann O'Hagan. The Irish, Dutch and Italian roots is the story of America
His forefathers would be so proud of him.
Moving to Ireland
After living in Ireland for almost one year, this is what I’ve learned