With all the caterwauling and carrying on we’re having to endure this weekend, I thought it might be beneficial to revisit a column I wrote in November, 2015.
Because man, oh man. Is it relevant today.
Only a Poem – Originally published November 22, 2015
On September 11, 2015, I got a lovely, hateful response to my column about remembrance.
Perhaps you remember as I published the spittle-flying, nasty little missive in its entirety HERE.
Well, the huffy young man didn’t stop at sending a message here.
He also took to the Patriot Retort Facebook page and, among other profanity-laced comments, wrote this:
I mean, for fuck’s sake, you call yourself an American? Do you know what’s written on the Statue of Liberty? America is a nation of inclusion and understanding, not a nation of hate and xenophobia.
Move over de Tocqueville!
America isn’t a nation founded on Liberty. It’s a nation of “inclusion and understanding.”
Why?! Because, because, because what’s written on the Statue of Liberty!!!!!
The other day, when the House voted overwhelming to increase vetting on refugees claiming to be from Syria (including 47 — or 25% — of the Democrats), CNN Global Affairs correspondent Elise Labott tweeted out this:
“House passes bill that could limit Syrian refugees. Statue of Liberty bows head in anguish.”
The Right Scoop reported that Ms. Labott was suspended over this highly biased tweet.
My first thought was, “Wow, CNN suspends biased reporters?!”
I mean, come on. If that were a regular thing, CNN would be broadcasting a blank screen 24/7.
But she wasn’t the only one to invoke the Statue of Liberty over this refugee situation.
My moronic governor, Andrew Cuomo wrote the following on his Facebook page:
“If the day comes when America says ‘close the gates, build the wall,’ then I say take down the Statue of Liberty, because we’ve gone to a different place.
“The poem on the Statue of Liberty reads, ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.’ On the day this is no longer true, we will have lost sight of who we are.”
Could you imagine if these people had as much reverence for our Constitution as they do for a poem written by Emma Lazarus?
The poem on the plaque at the Statue of Liberty was originally written as part of an 1883 auction to raise money for the construction of the pedestal on which the Statue would stand.
Initially, when asked to write a poem for the event, Emma Lazarus refused. She was busy working with Jewish refugees who were fleeing Eastern European pogroms.
But the wealthy woman finally decided to participate in the fundraiser.
So Lazarus composed “The New Colossus” as an homage to these Jewish refugees with whom she worked. And this poem was auctioned off as part of the fundraiser for the pedestal.
In 1901, a friend of Lazarus began an effort to honor Emma Lazarus’ memory by having the poem placed on a plaque and mounted in the Statue of Liberty.
In 1903, six years after Lazarus’ death, her friend succeeded.
Note what it says on the bottom:
“This tablet, with her sonnet to the Bartholdi Statue of Liberty engraved upon it, is placed upon these walls in loving memory of Emma Lazarus.”
Notice it doesn’t say, “This tablet with her sonnet is placed upon these walls as a Constitutional Amendment for the United States of America. And in placing it herein, the United States must permit unfettered immigration from this day until eternity because America is a nation of inclusion and understanding.”
It was placed there in memory of Emma Lazarus.
As lovely a story as that may be, “The New Colossus” is a freaking poem written to raise money for the construction of the pedestal.
The Statue of Liberty was not a statue to honor immigrants or refugees.
It was a gift from France on America’s Centennial.
France was our oldest ally and fought side-by-side with us in our war of Independence. So it was natural that they would want to honor the Centennial of this nation’s birth.
The Statue of Liberty is a statue to honor America — the land of Liberty.
Not the land of “inclusion and understanding.”
But the land of Liberty.
Having such reverence for this poem as if it is part of our system of government or laws makes about as much sense as saying, “We as a nation must to feed the world. To not do so would be spitting on the traditions set out by Band-Aid when they recorded We are the World!”
Yet Liberals act as if a poem, written in 1883 as part of a fundraiser, is somehow of more weight and significance than our Constitution, the consent of the governed, or the will of the people.
They act as if US law, national security, and American sovereignty have to take a back seat to this poem by Emma Lazarus.
As sentimental and sweet as the poem may be, it is, nonetheless, only a poem.
It does not annul our laws or supersede our Constitution.
In fact, it is not in any way relevant to whether or not we as a people wish to limit — or curtail entirely — a proposed influx of refugees.
Especially if those refugees are from a part of the world crawling with radical Islamic terrorists.
Terrorists, mind you, who have already vowed to secrete their people among the throngs of those legitimately fleeing their terror.
Given the fact that Ms. Lazarus herself worked with refugees fleeing certain genocide from brutal, vicious barbarians, I can’t help but wonder if she too would be more inclined to reach out only to those ethnic groups who are facing genocide from radical Islamic butchers.
Like Jews (if there are any left in Syria or Iraq), Yazidis and Christians.
But I’ll be the first to point out that that’s pretty much conjecture on my part.
And, frankly, about as relevant to this debate as Ms. Lazarus’ poem itself.
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Books by Dianny:
RANT 2.0: Even More Politics & Snark in the Age of Obama,
Liberals Gone WILD!!! The Not-So-Silent Conquering of America,
RANT: Politics & Snark in the Age of Obama,
and two novels: Sliding Home Feet First and Under the Cloud