Legendary folk rocker Neil Young celebrates U.S. citizenship

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When it comes to Neil Young and politics, there may be few surprises left. Except, earlier this week the 74-year-old musician took to social media and declared “I’m in!” Referring to his acceptance as an American citizen. Young posed with both American and Canadian flags. He saluted the American flag.

American citizen: Neil Young

It is easy for some people to forget that Young is Canadian. A longtime resident of California, Young’s work with Crosby, Stills, and Nash, not to mention Pearl Jam, made for some of America’s most iconic songs. Even further back in musical history, Young was in a band with Rick James, years before James would be known for his beaded braids and the song “Super Freak.”

So the question for many might be, what made Young decide to become American now? Especially given the country’s political climate of the past few years, the US seems to have little to offer some people. And, the idea of “moving to Canada” to protest certain political outcomes still appeals to some people. When people want to move to the US from Canada, it raises questions.

According to thehill.com, Young’s willingness to become an American citizen is based on his desire to vote in the 2020 US election. The website also reports that Young has been a supporter of Bernie Sanders since 2016. Now that he is a citizen, Young can vote in regard to his interests.

While it was not made clear when Young began the proceedings to become an American citizen, he did explain that his application was “held up” due to his use of marijuana.

With this latest development, and his continued performing and songwriting, Young is demonstrating that there is no age limit on standing up for what a person believes in.

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Dodie Miller-Gould is a native of Fort Wayne, Indiana who lives in New York City where she studies creative nonfiction at Columbia University. She has BA and MA degrees in English from Indiana University-Purdue University, Fort Wayne, and an MFA in Fiction from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Her research interests include popular music and culture, 1920s jazz, and blues, confessional poetry, and the rhetoric of fiction. She has presented at numerous conferences in rhetoric and composition, and creative writing. Her creative works have appeared in Tenth Muse, Apostrophe, The Flying Island, Scavenger's Newsletter and elsewhere. She has won university-based awards for creative work and literary criticism.

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