Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has just shared a new ad from his FWD.us political action group focusing on immigration reform — but it's more than a little tone deaf. In a Facebook announcement post, Zuckerberg says that the ad shows "how passing reform is our chance to keep America a magnet for the world's brightest and hardest working people." So FWD.us decided to rewrite one of the nation's most famous poems to serve its high-tech immigration reform message.
The ad, titled "Emma" after the poet Emma Lazarus, begins with the authentic words of "The New Colossus" — the poem engraved on a tablet at the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty in New York City. "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free," it says, before veering far afield from the poem's original intent. "Give me the influencers and the dreamers," the ad says. "Talent that is searching for purpose. Those dedicated to the doing." That sentiment is in stark contrast to the original sonnet, which beckons for those less privileged: the "wretched refuse," the "homeless, tempest-tost."
Both the original poem and the new FWD.us ad end with the same line, "I lift my lamp beside the golden door." Yet where the former is a promise that America can be a refuge from injustice, the rewritten version seems to refer more to the entrance of the tech industry's bank vault.