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The Statue of Liberty was originally going to be a Muslim woman
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The Statue of Liberty was originally going to be a Muslim woman. That thought does hold some value given recent events. - photo by Herb Scribner
Heres an interesting fact of the day the Statue of Liberty was originally going to be a Muslim woman.

And no, were not kidding. The Daily Beasts Michael Daly pointed this out in an article Wednesday, explaining how the Statue of Libertys architect Frdric Auguste Bartholdi of France planned for the statue to be of a Muslim peasant woman who was guarding the Suez Canal, and not the Lady Liberty we see today.

According to Michael Orens book "Power, Faith and Fantasy," the statue was even supposed to be double the size of the sphinx.

Bartholdi, though, couldnt sell the idea to Egypt, whose leader at the time, Ismail Pasha, ran out of money. Bartholdi took a cruise thereafter, on which he turned his sketch idea into the Lady Liberty that rests in New York harbor, according to The Daily Beast.

The statue was going to be a symbol "of the nations commitment to welcoming the less fortunate from foreign lands," according to The New York Times.

Or as The Daily Beast puts it: "And there she now stands, the Muslim woman turned to Lady Liberty, the light in her upraised hand symbolizing so much more than simple progress, the inscription at the base words from the poet Emma Lazarus that are familiar to us all:

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

That symbolism and message is why Daly has presented the statues origins this week since many Syrian refugees across the world find themselves in danger of not finding asylum in countries in Europe and the United States following a wave of attacks in Paris, which left 129 dead and more than 350 injured.

One of the attackers allegedly had a fake Syrian passport, according to The Washington Post, which raised safety concerns among politicians in the United States and Europe that believe allowing Syrian refugees into the U.S. might make their states less safe and more vulnerable to terrorism.

Already 31 states have said they would oppose accepting Syrian refugees or have flat-out stopped doing so altogether, BuzzFeed News reported.

But keeping people out of a country because of their religious or ethnic background may be going against what the Statue of Liberty has always promised, according to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who said that not letting in Syrian refugees would be like taking down the Statue of Liberty, reported the New York Daily News.

"We have to protect Americans and not lose our soul as America in the process. Right? Cuomo said at Harvard University. The day America says, 'Close the gates, build the wall,' then I say take down the Statue of Liberty because youve gone to a different place."

Thats not far off from what Daly wrote about the statue this week. The Statue of Liberty represents more than just the relationship between France and the United States it is a statue that symbolizes freedom and safety for people from all over the world with different religious and ethnic backgrounds, Daly wrote for The Daily Beast.

"To truly be Lady Liberty, the figure built with kids' coins and originally conceived as a Muslim must remain a Muslim as well as a Christian and a Jew and a Hindu and a Buddhist and every other faith, even no faith at all," Daly wrote.
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