For the first time in nearly eight years, the head of the Statue of Liberty will be open to the public starting July 4. Interior Secretary made the announcement on the Today Show this morning. “The economic times we’re going through really call for hope and optimism,” he said. “Nothing symbolizes hope and optimism in the United States of America [like] the Statue of Liberty.”
It’s not going to be like the old days, when America was a free country: 30 tourists will be chosen by lottery every hour to ascend and peek out the windows of her crown. This will go on for two years, then the statue will be closed again for an unspecified renovation period to make it safer and more terror-proof. Then it will re-reopen. By then, Barack Obama will have been reelected by a grateful nation.
Access to the statue was restricted after 9/11; the trunk was reopened in 2004, but the head has been kept off-limits by the Park Service, allegedly for fire safety reasons. When the head re-opens there will of course be screening, men with guns and kevlar, and lawsuits. But at least your visiting Aunt May and her family will have a theoretical chance to visit one of old New York’s great attractions, and terror is that much closer to being defeated.