The massively uninformed who occupy the majority population of the left are once again insisting that Emma Lazarus's 1883 poem "The New Colossus" which occupies a spot inside the statues base, is meant to represent America as supposedly having open borders. And from that baseless logic they have deduced that the statue herself is therefore a representation of an open border America.
And for the whatever the number of times we have been down this road of ignorance with them before... they are still and always will be, 100% WRONG! As usual.
Lets start by looking at "Lady Liberty" herself. This 151 foot tall, 450,000 pound or 225 ton statue was not even originally created for the predominantly Christian country of the United States. It was originally intended for the majority Muslim country of Egypt but they refused it claiming that it was too old fashioned. Now the creator of the (Liberty Enlightening the World) better known now of course as the Statue of Liberty had a really big problem. That would be this man;
The statue was his vision and he was deeply in debt from its creation. Now he had no buyer. And then he turned his eye towards the United States.
We also need to clear up another fallacy concerning our statue of Liberty. She WAS NOT a gift to America from France. Bartholdi did that all on his own trying to keep his vision alive.
This is found in Bartholdi's own notes. I tend to trust the horses mouth over third hand accounts.
That's right folks, our most endearing symbol of freedom and liberty was meant for the Muslims who are fascists and compared to us, are repulsed by individual freedom and liberty. But since they decided not to accept it... it became our hand me down. No one else wanted it so we took it and made it our own.
We have a habit of doing such things. Taking what no one else wants and making it mean something. Look at Alaska.
So right there the statue was originally designed for a people who despise us in America and all we stand for. So the only reason that the statue of liberty represents freedom and liberty is because we Americans said it does. But it had absolutely nothing to do with immigration.
The Statue of Liberty has now stood in New York’s harbor for 132 years, since 1886. Securing her spot there though was no easy or quick task. Bartholdi had to work hard to promote his statue concept, and to help with fundraising, he put parts of the statue on display and charged admission. The arm and torch were exhibited in Philadelphia in 1876 and the head in Paris in 1878.
Paris 1878 Exposition with Statue of Liberty's head. ------ Arm and torch in Philadelphia PA 1876
Americans were also pretty slow to embrace the giant statue by virtue of fundraising being quite pathetic. It took a solid 15 years before enough money was raised to complete the statue being built in a Paris neighborhood by civil engineer Gustave Eiffel, architect Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, and structural engineer Maurice Koechlin. The pedestal was later built by American architect Richard Morris Hunt.
Which actually brings us to Emma Lazarus and her sonnet "The New Colossus". But there is a little more to tell about the statue itself that leads up to that part.
After displaying the statues arm in Philadelphia during the 1878 worlds fair resulted in that city raising the most funds. Bartholdi was so excited that he kicked around the idea of offering the statue to Philadelphia instead of New York City due to the latter's lackluster fundraising attempts.
In 1882 when the statue was well under construction Boston Mass. made a play for the statue trying to steal it out from under New York City. The reply from the Big Apple was swift and left no room for misinterpretation.
The New York Times :
“[Boston] proposes to take our neglected statue of Liberty and warm it over for her own use and glory. Boston has probably again overestimated her powers. This statue is dear to us, though we have never looked upon it, and no third rate town is going to step in and take it from us. Philadelphia tried to do that in 1876, and failed. Let Boston be warned . . . that she can’t have our Liberty … that great light-house statue will be smashed into … fragments before it shall be stuck up in Boston Harbor.”
When Bartholdi first arrived in America in 1871 he considered both the newly completed Central Park as well as Brooklyn’s Prospect Park as possible locations for his statue but both locations fell through.
Eventually Ulysses S Grant authorized the use of Bedloe Island (now Liberty Island) for the statue. He stipulated though that the Statue would be a lighthouse. That would give it a purpose, and therefore, would justify government funding. This however proved an impossible task for the engineers who were never able to successfully light it enough to serve that purpose. Over time, though it became clear that the site of Bedloe’s Island was too far inland for any lighthouse to be of any real use anyway.
Now we come to the sonnet penned by Emma Lazarus, and why she wrote it.
The actual Statue of Liberty was already completed and in storage but there was no pedestal built to set it on. This was not an option, no pedestal, no statue. It was a thing at the time, statues had to be placed on pedestals to make them more grand or imposing.
Construction on the pedestal itself was started in 1883 by American architect Richard Morris Hunt but by 1884 money for the project had ran out. Construction was halted with just 5 meters of the 9 meter pedestal completed until the following year, 1885 when construction was allowed to resume and be completed.
In 1883, a Jewish woman and poet named Emma Lazarus was commissioned to write a poem to be included in a fundraising auction for building the pedestal on which the statue would be placed. It was not spontaneously penned by her as many claim, she was hired to write it. The poem itself was barely read aloud during her lifetime and was never published until long after her untimely death in 1887. Emma Lazarus would never even know that "The New Colossus" would eventually become her most famous work.
It is often claimed that Emma Lazarus was an advocate for all refugees and worked tirelessly to aid them showing that she believed in open borders. Not exactly, she worked tirelessly to aid Jewish refugees fleeing persecution in Russia. This makes sense since she herself was a Jew and experienced the anti-Semitism of the time first hand.
This was Emma Lazarus's inspiration for the sonnet, the plight of the oppressed Jewish refugees fleeing Russia. Her entire work with refugees and helping to locate and aid those here in America was exclusively towards other Jews. So her meaning behind the poem is fairly easy to deduce. I have read almost everything Emma Lazarus has ever written and not once did I ever come across even a hint that the woman advocated for open borders, not one word.
If you really think about it since the liberals who are trying to re imagine what this woman meant by her words have also chosen to be anti Semitic (they back Israel's enemies) is just a tad hypocritical. Trying to use a Jews words to justify their actions while at the same time supporting those who would seek the Jews destruction in totality. These leftists truly have no sense of ethics or morality whatsoever.
The poem was not even part of the statue until 1904 when it was engraved on a plague and placed on the pedestal to HONOR EMMA LAZARUS for her fundraising contribution that made the pedestal possible. It did not become famous until 1945 when it was engraved over the entrance to the monument.
We already know by now though that the left does not care one iota about facts, or true history because if they do not like it, they simply go about trying to rewrite it to fit their own narrative, and destroying the actual history to hide their crime. Which is what has happened to this poem meant to represent the plight of Jewish refugees fleeing death in Russia, and the statue of liberty representing a safe harbor for them to come to. The left has twisted this woman's noble cause of helping HER people escape deadly oppression to fit their own agenda on immigration.
Just look it up online, you will get every leftist interpretation out there for what that poem means. I did not use a computer, I read actual books. They (Marxists) will be coming for those too sooner or later though, they always have, and they always will. There is after all only room for one history.
The saddest thing of all though is that if America did have open borders, and was turned into a socialist country like the left wants, then the liberty that this statue represents will be snuffed out, and likely gone forever.
Remember the final words of the poem. "I lift my lamp beside the golden DOOR." Places with DOORS are not open for people to travel freely. Doors are by definition a means to inhibit free passage unless the person or people behind the door ALLOW other people to enter.
Step away from the noise.
Ignorance is the darkest of prison cells, but truth is the key that opens the door to freedom.
~The Ugly Truth Project
Emma Lazarus Biography
Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi Biography
There are actually three statues of liberty.
10 Things You Didn't know (fun)
A Little Deeper Look, Little Different Angles
The Statue of Liberty's Unveiling Was Protested
Mitchell, E. (2014). Liberty's Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty.
Bartholdi, F. A. (1886). Statue of "liberty enlightening the world." New York: Publisher not identified.
Lazarus, E. (1963). Selected poems and other writings