Thursday, January 23, 2014
The Golden Door
Last night on the news, I heard New York Governor Cuomo telling conservatives, pro-lifers and other non-liberal groups that they are not welcome in New York State anymore. Then, at the commercial break, an advertisement aired enticing out-of-state business owners to move their operations to New York's tax-free zones designated precisely for this purpose. Evidently, New York is willing to accept our money -- just not us.
"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-tossed to me
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!" *
Even though there are numerical quotas on who can emigrate to America at any given time, our country still honors and welcomes legal immigration for those aliens willing to play by our rules. But when did state governors assume that it was acceptable to tell groups of American citizens that they are not welcome within a state's borders? What do they want us to do? Live on Conservative Reservations? And if so, where? Maybe a state or two will lift lamps beside their golden doors and welcome us in.
It is a dark, dark day when American citizens are not welcome within one of their own United States.
Sadly, that day is now upon us.
*"The New Colossus" is a sonnet by American poet Emma Lazarus (1849–87), written in 1883. In 1903, the poem was engraved on a bronze plaque and mounted inside the lower level of the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty.