Craig Andresen

A Silent Witness

By Craig Andresen on October 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm

Since that day, in 1886, the world has changed and through it all, one has born witness to it all. Standing as a silent guardian, a light in the darkness, never blinking, never wavering. One has been there from that day to this.

Since that day, in 1886, 12 new states have been added to our nation.

23 Presidents have held office…2 of them died too soon.

Americans have gone from the surrender of Geronimo to WWII heroes speaking a language few could understand.

Since that day in 1886, it would be 2 more years before Kodak produced its first consumer camera, 17 years before the Wright Brothers took to the air and 22 years before the invention of the electric toaster.

Since then, we have flown, gone to the moon, sent mechanical ambassadors to Mars and our dev8ices have left our solar system.

Through 2 world wars, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and more, a witness to our soldiers leaving, returning and mourning those who either never made it back or came home as the ultimate heroes, has been right there.

Imagine watching the advent of motion pictures to the reality of watching them on our phones.

Imagine keeping watch while around the world, nations rose and fell, leaders came and went, unspeakable acts of genocide and the birth of new freedoms took place.

In that year, when the sentinel first stood, the first gas powered car was built.

Economic declines and economic booms, cold war with walls going up, the end of the cold war with that wall coming down all happened since that day, in 1886.

The witness, the one, standing proud and tall even watched on that fateful day in 2001, when, so close the evil came that it took 3000 of our own away.

Through every tragedy and triumph, through the mourning and the celebrations, good time and bad, through the little things and those moments which challenged history and changed the future, since 1886, one witness has meant more than nearly any other.

The only words attributed to this person are these:

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free. The wretched refuse of you teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

125 years ago today, she took her place and more importantly than all she has seen is what she has done. She has welcomed those who came from distant shores, holding high her torch and providing light in the darkness.

She came to us from France but has been and will remain, uniquely American, an icon of freedom, hope and yes…Of liberty.

Lady Liberty does not belong to us…She IS us and we, at our best, are her.

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One Response to “A Silent Witness”

  1. Ronda Swanson Says:

    Wow – this was a beautifully written piece. I am so proud to be an American!