Instead of yet another post about the latest horrors and craziness emanating from Donald Trump and his campaign, I thought I would focus on someone who, by contrast, exemplifies the best of America– inclusiveness, mutual responsibility, commitment to democracy, distrust of authoritarians who say things like “I alone can fix it.”
Tefere Gebre fled his native Ethiopia for his life at the age of 14 and barely survived a trek to a refugee camp in Sudan. He was accepted as a political refugee in the United States, where he was resettled in California and completed high school and college.
While working as a truck loader for United Parcel Service, he joined the Teamsters Union and began moving up the ranks of the labor movement. In 2013 he was elected executive vice president of the AFL-CIO— one of the three top positions in the 12 million-member labor federation.
Here’s what he has to say about what America means to him: