It’s Time To SPEAK OUT!

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!”


Emma Lazarus

The above is the text of Emma Lazarus’ poem, The New Colossus.  She wrote the poem in 1883 to raise money for the construction of a pedestal for the Statue of Liberty, and in 1903, the poem was cast onto a bronze plaque and mounted inside the pedestal’s lower level.  For more than 100 years, those words have been symbolic of what this nation stands for.

Three days ago, on August 12th, this man …


Son of a Bitch, Ken Cuccinelli

… Ken Cuccinelli, with malice aforethought and in defiance of the very values that have heretofore defined this nation and its people, re-wrote a line in the poem.  Mr. Cuccinelli revised it to say …

“Give me your tired, your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge …”

Mr. Ken Cuccinelli is, in the opinion of this writer, a Grade A Son of a Bitch.

He further claimed that the poem was intended only for European immigrants, not Middle Easterners, not Asians, and not Latinos.  I repeat … Mr. Ken Cuccinelli is a Son of a Bitch.

Trump-toonIt is against the laws of the land to change an author’s work without his or her permission.  Emma Lazarus died on November 19, 1887 and thus cannot give her permission for the changes Mr. Sonofabitch has proposed, nor do I believe she would give permission.  These changes are not in the spirit upon which this nation was founded.

The United States has made its share of horrific mistakes, starting with the enslavement of Africans early on, the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, the rejection of the St. Louis carrying Jewish refugees, many of them who later died as a result, the atomic bombings at Hiroshima and Nagasaki … We ought to have learned from those mistakes, but instead, today we have a so-called president who wishes to make this a “white, Christian nation” by rejecting refugees fleeing violence and terror in their native lands.  He would build a wall to keep out Latinos from Central America, he would impose a ban on refugees from Middle-Eastern, predominantly Muslim countries, and he promotes and applauds racism and white supremacy on a near-daily basis.  This week, he implemented new ‘rules’ to deny citizenship to immigrants who are struggling financially and are being assisted by government programs such as rent subsidies, food stamps, and Medicaid.

What’s next, folks?  Think long and hard about this … Donald Trump, Stephen Miller, Andrew Wheeler, Steve Bannon, Ken Cuccinelli, and a boatload of others in the Trump administration are bigots to the nth degree.  They have no respect nor love for the principles on which this nation was founded, but their only concern is putting more wealth into the pockets of the already-wealthy at any and all costs to the people who are paying their way in the world.  We are increasingly pawns being moved about on a huge chessboard by people who have no heart, no values, nothing but a lust for money and a sense of entitlement.

Will we allow them to re-write history by re-writing the lines on the base of the Statue of Liberty?  If we do, then we should simply send that statue back to France, for we no longer deserve it.  If we do, then we have stopped being the United States of America as it has been envisioned throughout its relatively short history.  Perhaps in two years, it will be called the DSR – Divided States of Russia.

I began this post with the poem by Emma Lazarus.  I shall end it with yet another well-known poem, this one by Martin Niemöller …


Martin Niemöller

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

liberty cries

53 thoughts on “It’s Time To SPEAK OUT!

  1. Hello Jill. What stuns me is this racism bigotry is so in your face. There is no dog whistles anymore. They are being very clear they want an apartheid system like South Africa had. This started with confederate flags that were claimed by the owners to “be for states rights” while we know it was truly white supremacy. Now we have members of the administration openly saying we want only white upper class people. Ok poor white people can come in , but no POC of any economic class, unless you can buy a condo from the Pres. I simply don’t understand why this vocal minority is getting away with such extreme hatred. Why is not the majority being able to slam this down hard. Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

    • You’re so right, Scottie … they have shed any bit of veneer they once had, no longer bother to hide or camouflage their rhetoric. I know you’ve mentioned the comparison to South African apartheid before, but I didn’t really pay it too much attention until just recently, and I’m starting to see the connection … I don’t understand how this happened, either, or why. I suspect, as I’ve mentioned before, that one factor was having an African-American in the White House for 8 years. I think that much of what we see today is pushback against that, but … that still doesn’t answer the question of “WHY???” Sigh. I don’t like what this nation has become … not one bit.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hello Jill. Yesterday I posted about a white woman who pulled a gun on four kid kids selling something for a school fundraiser. When the police arrived they found the kids laying face down on the ground with the white woman holding a gun on them. Oh and did I mention that the kids were black? My schools growing up did that fund raising stuff and I never had to worry someone would pull a gun on me, but I am white. The kids did nothing wrong yet the woman had the attitude that black kids should not be in her neighborhood and for some reason she felt that she had the right to hold them at gunpoint. What if one of the kids had panicked and run, would she have shot a kid for doing a school fundraiser? Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

          • Hello Jill. The point about her being a wife of a law enforcement officer is very concerning because does he also share her views? Again is this the case of a racist with a gun in a position of power? Hugs

            Liked by 1 person

            • Good question … we’ll likely never know, but this whole thing is disturbing. Every day some new abomination, something that we could not have even imagined a few short years ago. The nasties just keep crawling out from under the rocks. I live in a neighborhood that is predominantly African-American and Middle-Eastern refugees. There are two Caucasian families on our street, and they are the troublemakers … they are the ones who have the trashiest yards, who are most likely to create a disturbance. One day they threatened my Iraqi neighbor, Maha, for wearing a hajib, and she’s been afraid to wear it ever since. Sigh. Hugs.

              Liked by 1 person

  2. To change the poetic placard on the Statue of Liberty would defeat it’s fundamental message. That would be an unconscionable travesty and sacrilege to the symbol of freedom and compassion for humanity. I weep for our representatives who’s only concern are their own vested interests. 😦

    Liked by 3 people

    • It seems we have a few too many members of Congress like that, starting with Mitch McConnell and then the House Freedom Caucus (of which my own representative, sadly, is a member), and others who are in the pockets of either the NRA or the fossil fuel industry. Sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Cuccinelli’s speech was among the worst I’ve heard in the past 50 years. The audacity to amend the words associated with Lady Liberty is simply outrageous. He needs to step down, as does much of the current leadership.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I must return and listen to it … I was so furious that I couldn’t bring myself to at the time. Sigh. He is like the rest of Trump’s minions … he will not step down, but will either have to be fired, or led out in chains. Either is fine by me …


  4. I have been betwixt rage and sorrow ever since reading this vile man’s words last evening. I thought that this could not possibly be true, not in America, not in the country once known for welcoming open arms and hearts. In days long gone, school children committed to memory the Words of Emma Lazurus from “Give me your tired” through “I lift my lamp beside the golden door.” We could not only recite those words, but also we believed them! What was once America’s greatest dream has turned into America’s worst nightmare. I have often shared Martin Niemoller’s poem, it should strike fear in our hearts today…for what once happened in distant lands now ominously looms large on our horizon. Should one scoff at the possibility, delve more deeply into the interview with Ken Cuccinelli, pay heed to Trump’s rhetoric and listen to what the likes of his minions such as Tucker Carlson are spewing! I, and all of us, must take the rage and sorrow and turn it into a firm resolution to unite like thinkers to work at soundly defeating Trump in 2020. Let us consign Trump and his sycophants in Congress to the unemployment line or to the fires of Hell that they so justly deserve! Perhaps then Lady Liberty will once again have meaning and return to representing the America of the past. I cannot thank-you enough for this excellent post. An honest, beautifully written, yet sad commentary on our times. Thank-YOU!!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Like you, Ellen, I have been enraged by this all day, but then that rage was enjoined by the rage over Benjamin Netahyahu readily agreeing to bar two members of Congress from his country based solely on Trump’s request that he do so. There is much to be furious over these days. Sigh. It would seem that in the nearly 75 years since the end of WWII, the end of the Holocaust, we in the western world have forgotten, or lost sight of, the lessons of that period in history. We have forgotten the slaughter that was a result of bigotry. The Chinese believe that history is cyclic, and I’m beginning to believe that, for we seem to be on the same path that Europe was on in the 1930s. As PPM say in their song, “When will we ever learn?” I think, perhaps, never. Thank YOU, by the way, for both your kind words and your “heads up” on this story.

      Liked by 1 person

      • At times it seems there is little to be hopeful about, but then it comes to me…that is what Trump and cronies want from those of us that fail to see the “light”, that he seems to think he shines. NEVER GIVE UP!! As Winston Churchill said : “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” Thank-you and you are most welcome too!!

        Liked by 1 person

        • You are right … he wants us to feel that our vote will not count anyway, so why bother. He hopes we will think that our protests don’t make a difference, so we’ll stop. He wants us to bury our collective and weary heads in the sand and leave him to do his dirty deeds without oversight or challengers. Well, he’s flat out of luck there! I shall keep going … like the Energizer Bunny … and going …


    • Thank you so much, Bee! It almost seems as if the “free world” has gotten tired of being “free” and prefers to exchange said freedoms for those who would use us as pawns in a chess game. Hugs!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Good Heavens, Mr Cuccinelli is no bloody poet is he.. Plus I don’t think he’s very good at reading, The poem says, From her beacon-hand Glows world-wide welcome; World wide Mr Cuccinelli or she might well have written except for Italians who follow Mussolini and Germans who may have followed Hitler and instead collected Persians with their rich heritage of Poets and Arabs with their inventions in Mathematics. The Irish may not have been welcome for their drinking. Emma Lazarus knew what she was saying, those who needed to come were to be made welcome regardless of skin colour or ethnicity.. It is not one mans role to dictate that what a nation has allowed for decades is wrong and what the future should be..The nation should decide that.

    Liked by 3 people

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