I remember growing up in a small community where the Pledge of Allegiance was said each morning without fail, and we were vehemently taught that America was the land of opportunity where even the poorest of men (or women) could become whatever they wanted. As I grew up, I had visions in my head of the Statue of Liberty and that wonderful quote:
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "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!"