President Trump is destroying an iconic beacon of hope. A chill, arctic wind whips over Liberty Island in Upper New York Bay where a few huddled masses remain, awaiting the last ferry of the day. Visitors from all over the globe (but mostly from New York City) made the meager pilgrimage by water taxi to bid farewell to an American icon – Lady Liberty.
Per President Trump’s latest Executive Order (entitled the Restoration of Freedom Order) the 150-year-old monument will be demolished in an act the President deemed necessary to save precious Federal dollars wasted on goodwill toward man and said he wished to “rid our shores of her tempting migrant-bait.”
“She’s disgraceful, she’s not even attractive. She’s a four, ok? I’ve had much better, much better. We all know I have.” – President Trump
Speaking from the 7th green at his Palos Verdes Golf Course in Southern California, President Trump responded to a reporter’s question about his latest unilateral action.
“For too long Lady Liberty has flaunted our values undermined hard working Americans. She has been working the corner of our great nation like a harlot in the night, flashing her luscious green skin for all the world to see. The Mexicans, the Europeans, the Chinese, the refugees from the Middle East, from Iraq, from Syria, they see her waving her flaming dildo in the sky and they swarm to her light like insects, desperate to suck at the American teat. She’s disgraceful, she’s not even attractive. She’s a four, ok? I’ve had much better, much better. We all know I have. Putin has the tapes.”
Despite weeks of protest and fervent opposition from House Democrats and Republicans alike, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was quick to back the President.
“If we oppose every last thing he wants to do, we’ll never get anything done,” Said McConnell, who famously presided over the eight least productive Congresses in United States history during the Obama administration. “We’ve got to choose our battles. And that old metal lady isn’t worth fighting over.”
But immigrants to the United States noted the sentimental value of the giant green woman. Marcelus Engracio remembers the first time he saw the Statue of Liberty.
“I was with mi Mamá, you know? We were homeless, we didn’t have nothing. I used to eat ketchup packets and hot sauce right here, under Lady Libertad’s big toe. Mi Mamá brought me here because he had no place else to go. And you know wuh happon? One day this nice man in a long black coat, he tells mi Mamá he needs someone to clean his chimney. And mi Mamá says ok, I will clean the chimney and we went all the way to Manhattan and Mi mamá, she cleans the man’s chimney, you know? And you know what, Mi mamá got paid and she started cleaning chimney all around New York City. And it all started here under the Lady Liberdad.”
It’s a story unlike any other, yet so similar to so many we heard on Liberty Island today. Immigrants and descendants gathered here to catch one last glimpse of her green glory before the wrecking crew smashes her in tomorrow morning.
Hector Vasquez of Mexicali came to understand the glory of Lady Liberty in a different light than most. He remembers his first encounter:
“When I was a baby my father he brought me across the border in a basketball. He was dribbling me the whole time so the guards wouldn’t suspect anything. They checked all the fútbols, you know? The soccer balls, they cut them open. But they didn’t check the basketball because Mexicans don’t play basketball. We set off on a journey across the Estados Unidos. It took us fourteen years walking in a zig-zag pattern, you know homie? We finally made it to New York and my father took me to the mall and we was watching the Fiesta Bowl on a TV, me and my dad, and on the last play, Boise State did the Statue of Liberty and they won the game. That was the first time I saw it, I thought it was great. I don’t know why Trump is tearing it down, it was a great play.”
But others gathered today saw the Lady from another angle – the East to be specific. To the European poor she was the shining light at the end of the Northern Passage, the long harrowing journey from the continental ports that transported the majority of the caucasian population to America at the turn of the dawn of the 20th century.
“My great, great grandmother saw the Statue of Liberty from a steamship headed into Ellis Island,” says Margery Montague of Queens in a warbled, raspy breath. “She had a little miniature of the statue, like the kind you’d get at the gift shop. She used to carry it around with her in her purse and she’d squeeze it whenever she got nervous, like before a job interview or something. And later when she got old she kept it on her bedside table and prayed to it every night. She prayed for all the immigrants that were on that boat with her because she knew that all the people on that boat, and all the others boats, produced generation after generation of Americans and she would say to my grandmother all the time “remember, we’re all in this boat together.”
But not every member of the crowd feels the sentimental nostalgia of the gentle giantess. Jimbar Fishdangle of Tampa Bay, Florida is in the city on vacation and reckons it’s time for the old lady retire.
“Shoot we all plum filled up down in Tampa,” says Jimbar. “Can’t hardly find room to tan a gator’s hide with all the immigrants we got down there now. Living upstairs, downstairs, next door, out back, up the street. Thems’ immigrants living everywhere now.
And I reckon it’s worse up here in New York City, what with the slums and hippies and gangster rappers all around. This one fella on the subway I heard him talking, he says Brooklyn’s completely changed now, overrun with immigrants. Reverse gentri-fried, I think that’s what he called it. ‘Bout time that old rusty lady tears down, we all full up in America. They can put up a big neon sign in her place, reads “No Vacancy.”
Indeed our dearly beloved commander in chief did intend to send a message to our nation with the demolition of her Lady. Back at his Palos Verdes Golf Course in Los Angeles, where the stench of hot rotting seal carcasses wafted up the cliffside with a mid-morning breeze, the President had this to stay:
“I want everyone out there to know that if you see a symbol, like a statue or something else, and you strongly disagree with its principles, that you too should tear that symbol down. If you believe something is such a vile affront to your values that it not only infringes upon your rights but also endangers all humanity – as I believe that Statute of Liberty does – then you must fight to destroy that thing with all your might. And you can start by tearing into it just a little bit, in any way you see fit. That’s your goddamn right as an American. What do you want to tear into? Let us know. We’re taking submissions.”