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In her new must-read blog, Van Le, Digital Director for America’s Voice, highlights Tom Manche, a Youngstown, Ohio native who wrote a song in dedication of Amer Adi Othman, also of Youngstown.
Adi was deported to Jordan earlier this year, despite strong support from his congressman, Rep. Tim Ryan, and being the beneficiary of a private immigration bill that passed the House Immigration Subcommittee. Adi lived in the U.S. for forty years, has four American daughters, and an American wife. He is also a businessman who has employed hundreds of Americans over the years and played a leading role in the revitalization of downtown Youngstown.
Manche’s song delves into the concept of “home,” and imagines a day in the future when Adi will be allowed back into his real home, the United States.
Read excerpts from Van Le’s blog below and check out the stirring song here:
In January, Youngstown, Ohio businessman Amer Adi was deported, leaving his community to mourn a “hell of a man”. Amer had lived in the U.S. for nearly forty years, was married to a citizen and had four U.S. citizen daughters, had never committed any crimes, and was credited with helping to revitalize downtown Youngstown.
Amer’s story spread far and wide, eventually leading singer-songwriter and music producer Tom Manche — originally from Youngstown but now living in Nashville — to write a song about Amer and his family.
[ … ]
When asked why he wrote the song, Tom said:
“Like many Americans, I’ve been stunned and disappointed in the toxic political atmosphere since the ascendancy of Donald Trump. It pervades every aspect of government, to be sure, but as regards the immigration issue, I don’t think there’s a more potent example of mean-spirited, misguided overreach by ICE than the case of Amer Adi.
Here you have a highly regarded local entrepreneur (a job creator, not a job taker!), loving family man, and all-’round good guy, by all accounts, who was unceremoniously (and apparently, underhandedly) booted from the country he loves and has contributed to for decades. That’s not in line with the guiding principles of America as I thought I understood them.
By writing “Welcome Home (Amer’s Song)” I hope to shed a little light on what I view as an unjust abuse of power and, in a perfect world, aid in Amer’s struggle to reunite his family in the country calls home. If it raises awareness of these hard line tactics perhaps it can spare other families the pain and upheaval that Amer’s family has endured. How about we ‘Make America Kind Again’?”