When Stephen Miller fought with CNN reporter Jim Acosta over the poem on the Statue of Liberty, was he echoing an ‘alt-right’ talking point? It looks like it might be the case, after an argument about immigration that touched on the famous Emma Lazarus poem, “The New Colossus.”
According to ThinkProgress, white nationalists have been complaining for a while about the pro-immigration poem, written by a Jew and inscribed on the base of the statue. On the neo-Nazi site StormFront, there’s a discussion thread titled: “Give Me Your Huddled Masses — The Jewess who tried to destroy the US!”
Another discussion forum on Reddit is titled: “Does everyone realize that the poem inscribed beneath the Statue of Liberty is not, in fact, law?” It’s also a common trope to observe that “The New Colossus” was added to the statue’s base after the initial structure’s installation.
Miller pointed that out during his clash with Acosta, leading to a favorable call-out from ‘alt-right’ founder Richard Spencer. “It’s offensive that such a beautiful, inspiring statue was ever associated with ugliness, weakness, and deformity,” he wrote on Twitter.
Daniel J. Solomon is the former Assistant to the Editor/News Writer at the Forward. Originally from Queens, he attended Harvard as an undergraduate, where he wrote his senior thesis on French-Jewish intellectual history. He is excited to have returned to New York after his time in Massachusetts. Daniel’s passions include folk music, cycling, and pointed argument.
Is Stephen Miller Statue of Liberty Gripe Alt-Right?