Captive Nations Week 2020 Proclamation
and remarks from American Nationalities Movement President Judge Ralph Perk Jr July 23, 2020
Captive Nations Week was first recognized in 1959 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower at the urging of future Cleveland Mayor Ralph Perk Sr. and Congressmen Charles Vanik and US Senator Frank Lausche. Captive Nations Week has been supported each 3rd week in July by every US president since.
Judge Ralph Perk Jr. is the current (and only the third) president of the American Nationalities Movement. The first president was his father, the late Mayor Ralph Perk. He was followed by Irene Morrow. All three have been inducted into the Cleveland International Hall of Fame for their significant contributions to the region's ethnic diversity and heritage.
Judge Ralph Perk Jr.
The American Nationalities Movement was formed for the purpose of uniting all the nationalities in the United States in the goal to educate, advocate and represent their interests of all the diverse ethnic groups to the public and mostly to the political leaders of the United States. This pursuit of our common interest to achieve an understanding of the complex issues that confront each group individually and collectively and that without our united efforts all of us will be endanger.
Judge Perk gave some opening remarks and then read the current proclamation from President Donald Trump.
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The annual Captive Nations week dinner event could not be held because of the Coviv19 pandemic so Judge Perk and a few community leaders gathered (socially distant) in the Czech Cultural Garden in Cleveland.
Czech Cultural Garden
Czech Garden delegate Paul Burik welcomed the (intentionally) small crowd.
Community leaders in Czech Garden - Michael Patterson, Joseph Meissner, Pierre Bejjani, Ralph Perk Jr. and Paul Burik
He was followed by remarks by several community leaders in attendance: Cleveland American Middle East Organization president Pierre Bejjani, Lt. Colonel Joseph Meissner representing the Vietnamese Cultural Garden and Michael Patterson representing immigration attorney Margaret W. Wong.
Attorney, author and Lt. Colonel (ret) Joseph Meissner
American Nationalities Movement members believe that "our duty as citizens of the United States with diverse ethnic backgrounds and interests is to overcome any differences between us and act together to further the goals of reducing and eliminating any potential efforts by any group to adversely affect our values and beliefs.
The American Nationalities Movement understands that In order to make significant progress, we as a group must identify and select leaders that would represent our interests. That without such representation we will not be heard. Therefore as long as ethnic communities exist in the United States The American Nationalities Movement will actively support the groups interests.
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