by Aaron Turpen
Well, they’ve re-opened Liberty Island to tourists and our beloved Statue of Liberty is to re-open to the public later this summer. That’s very good news. Isn’t it?
Well, it sounds good at any rate.
Since the statue, as Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton says, is “a symbol to the darker forces of terrorism before and after September 11,” new “security precautions” will be enacted at the site.
Great, more security. Just what we need. Especially at the symbol of our nation’s liberty. Seem a little oxy-moronish to you? Well, keep reading, it gets worse.
Currently, the statue is being “upgraded” to fix potential fire problems and a “lack of exits.” Hmm…metal statue, concrete pedestal…fire problems?
Oh, and those “security upgrades.” Can’t forget those in this day of evil, mean terrorists and our eagerness to forfeit our rights so we can be safe from them…
Yep, they’ll be making the security “airport like” (their own words!) and will be instituting a reservations system in order to alleviate long lines (thanks to security). Currently, they already have metal detectors to screen passengers before boarding the island ferry.
So…in order to see the Statue of Liberty, you’ll have to submit to security screening (including, no doubt, taking your shoes off and allowing some minimum-wage officer to grope you just like at the airport) first.
Hmm…give up a little liberty in order see a big symbol of Liberty?
Next they’ll want to screen people with background checks before allowing you to purchase a U.S. Flag (what if you have “flag burning” in your background?). I’m sure Orrin Hatch would be all over that one.
Then they’ll want to institute helicopter and security patrols to make sure some nutcase with a Rocket Propelled Grenade doesn’t try to deface Mount Rushmore!
Hell, why not require RFID tags in all copies of the U.S. Constitution being circulated to make sure it isn’t used in some nefarious way?
The plaque on the Statue of Liberty “Give us your tired, your poor…” should be replaced with “GO HOME, POTENTIAL TERRORIST! WE DON’T WANT YOUR KIND HERE!” Maybe while they’re “restoring” the statue, they should make an adjustment and have Lady Liberty holding an M-16 and a GI helmet…
Land of the free my ass.
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