America is the land of promise. Perceived promise, broken promise, and most of all promise for the future of all who want to call America home. We are still the country most other people in the World want to come to, to live. Broken promises to be sure, but we have the courage to try and fulfill those promises, even at the expense of the pain and death of our fellow citizens.
Immigrants are the life blood of our society, without which, it would not be America. Immigration is not just a tradition in America, it is the essence of America. Those who want to wall off the flow of immigrants, are anti-American. We are nothing but a collection of immigrants, a society of people who chose to leave their mother land to come to America and seek a better life. We are a true example that collectively we can do better than individually.
It is not the tradition of America to be a wealthy class society. It is in the tradition of America to work to achieve a better position than you had when you started out. It is in American tradition to accept those seeking to escape oppression and lack of opportunity to make a better life for themselves and their families.
Capitalism is a system that not only meets the needs of people better than anywhere else in the World, but also allows those who work hard, to keep the fruits of their labor. That system and the people who benefit from that system; does not deny, but engages in and pays taxes for the practice that builds a society for the benefit of all, and most of all, for those less off still working hard to improve their lives. This is not socialism. It is decent people coming together to build a decent society. A society that respects the humanity of all people, rich, poor, any religion, any color.
If liberty, freedom, and free choice are our goals, and is our motto, then we must reject those who claim in the name of patriotism, to deny those rights to anyone in our society. We have learned from our own mistakes the harm we cause by discriminating against those who are new to our country. We need to try harder to fulfill our good words.
France had a clarity of what America was and is, seemingly better than we ourselves comprehend. Maybe because they are on the outside looking in, reflecting what millions around the World understand as the promise of America.
The Statue of Liberty Poem
By Emma Lazarus, 1883
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "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!"