Yesterday, November 19, 2015, the US House of Representatives voted in favor of legislation that would make it even more difficult for refugees from Iraq and Syria (and presumably other tormented lands) to enter the country. Today, I am reminded of the Emma Lazarus poem that sits at the base of the Statue of Liberty. The key lines of the New Colossus are:
“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
Looks like many of our representatives, state governors and a variety of talking heads have forgotten one of the central tenets that inspired, and inspires, this nation.
Image: Statue of Liberty unveiled, by Edward Moran, 1886. Courtesy of Museum of the City of New York. Public Domain.