To the Editor:
We have a long-held national identity. We have portrayed ourselves as a people that cares about the needs of the vulnerable, the downtrodden and the unpopular.
We have led the world in the protection of human rights, and one of our best known and most popular symbols of that philosophy is the Statue of Liberty — Lady Liberty. She proclaims “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.“ Lady Liberty also tells us that she is “Mother of Exiles,” courtesy of Emma Lazarus.
It is certainly true that pragmatic reality must guide our actions, but it is equally true that our actions must be in accordance with our moral principles and national identity. We are honor-bound to meet the standard of those principles and identity.
What is happening to us that we can support those who stand at the border and shout insults and threats at children, or who, in our names as our elected representatives, insist that our obligations stop with ourselves? They should be ashamed, and we should be loudly and regularly shaming them.