Quotes, quotes and more quotes

I recently happened upon a sonnet entitled “The New Colossus” by Emma Lazarus. About half way through, I realized that it was the same poem engraved on the plaque inside the Statue of Liberty. It is pasted below for your reading pleasure, along with my commentary

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!”

Reading this carefully now, I wonder if such a miraculous utopia exists anywhere in the world. Such a country would be populated by a people that were willing to give without expecting, to love without conditions, and would be full of compassion for the poor and helpless.  I once heard a quote at a church, it went something like this

“If you find the perfect church, don’t go there, because it will not be perfect anymore”

The problem with any country is that it has people. One person is fine, and that would be the ideal country. Once you get two in that country, that is the exact number required to start a disagreement. Three, and then the factions and brawling begin. I’ll end with a final quote from that prince of philosophers Rodney King

“People, I just want to say, can’t we all get along? Can’t we all get along?”

Rodney King

All content copyright of Christopher Hammond