US politics, immigration, history, birdsite link 

My youngest has a picture book about the Statue of Liberty, and there’s a photo of the plaque with Emma Lazarus’s poem at the end. I always read him the poem, and it always wrecks me to do so.

Now we have public officials trying to re-write the poem to suit their callous ideology:

twitter.com/atrupar/status/116

US politics, immigration, history, birdsite link 

The idea of America as a refuge for the poor and persecuted is a national myth, and like so many others it falls apart as an assertion of historical fact—as Cuccinelli himself points out. But the value in all myths is their capacity to shape an identity that drives public ethics and, ultimately, public policy.

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US politics, immigration, history, birdsite link 

Lazarus’s poem was part of the narrative of the civic education I received as a child—America as a promise, still unfulfilled, of “liberty and justice for all,” with that word “all” left unspecified, as though it were a dare or an invitation to test the thoroughness and extensiveness of our commitment to liberty and justice.

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US politics, immigration, history, birdsite link 

Given the strength of racism and xenophobia, this commitment might prove to be just a dream. But no movement that rejects freedom and justice for all, even as an aspiration, can lay claim to a vision for American “greatness” that I would find remotely worthy of support.

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