Happy birthday to our very own Lady Liberty, whose 125 years of standing alone in New York Harbor we mark this very Friday. If you’ll recall, the French gave us the statue to pay tribute to American liberty back on October 28, 1886. Now they’ve ruled against kids eating ketchup in their schools, so you see how far we’ve come. (Freedom fries!). In any case, the Statue is officially in her elder years, and though people are all going to say how good she looks for how old she is, and, sure, she does, given that she’s a statue, we’re going to take this moment to ask people to instead focus on her as a symbol of hope, promise, and how America once actually welcomed immigrants (or at least, pretended to symbolically) instead of blatantly trying to keep them out with giant fences.
Also, her skin looks pretty dewy, doesn’t it? Happy birthday, Ms. Liberty. Your arm must be tired by now.
Note: There’s a big party for her today on Liberty Island, with fireworks, a parade of ships, and a naturalization ceremony for 125 new citizens from more than 40 countries, reports NY1. She’s open throughout the day, but will close tomorrow for about a year for a $27 million upgrade on her “pedestal and base.” Because as much as we try to ignore it, everybody’s pedestal and base could use a little lift as we head into youth’s pastures.
In related news, by the end of the celebration today, the Statue’s torch will have webcams installed inside. That’s how we do birthdays, 2011.
Update: Statue of Liberty webcams are on, now! Play find the picnic-ers with us.