By Kevin Walker, President and CEO, Northwest Area Foundation

Let’s talk about who we really are as a country.

Events of this summer have brought me back to the most recognized words from a poem on a plaque affixed to the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” These words were once so beloved that they became a cliché from overuse.

But today’s incendiary debate about immigrants and refugees creates an urgency to remind ourselves that the concept behind these words by the American poet Emma Lazarus is no cliché. Not when parents and children are being forcibly separated and a sitting president chooses to say “go back where you came from” to citizens he deems insufficiently American.

In fact, I think the concept is fundamental to this country….

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