Her

Once upon a time my great grandmother, Gisella Bohais, left Komona, Hungary and arrived at Ellis Island. She was 17, alone, with $13 in her possession. It was 1907.

A century later I would visit the tenements where she lived, now a public housing project called the Jacob Riis Houses on the east side (so named because they were some of the more deplorable tenements Riis ever photographed). I stood across the street and wondered about the woman I never knew whose dream resulted in mine - whose dream was, in some ways, the same as mine. Gisella Bohais was not American, but neither is the 'American Dream'. It comes from elsewhere. It's about getting here. 

So you see, the Statue of Liberty is so much more than a statue. She is an invitation. She is asking for you. 

Who are we to silence her?