President Trump to Remove Statue of Liberty, Return it to France-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
President Trump plan to remove the Statue of Liberty and return it to France because it encourages immigrants to come to the U.S.
Claims that President Trump want to remove the Statue of Liberty and return it to France started out as satire and were later misidentified as actual news by readers.
There have been numerous satirical or fictional accounts about President Trump removing the Statue of Liberty and returning it to France since the November 2016 election. Among them was an article published by the Huffington Post as satire on November 18, 2016, under the headline, “President-Elect Trump Calls for Removal of Statue of Liberty Because It Encourages Immigration,” that begins:
It makes no sense to tell the world you can’t come here unless we invite you and then you have this frumpy old woman standing outside our country and telling people to come and stay as long as you want,” Trump said during a press conference at the Trump Tower in New York City. “Does this make any sense?”
“What does the Statue of Liberty say? I don’t know. To be honest, I’ve lived in New York City my whole life and I’ve never been there,” Trump said. “Why would anyone go? Nobody goes there.”
A reporter told him that the Statue of Liberty said, “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!”
“Is that right? Really? Your tired? Your poor? Your wretched refuse? Homeless? So that’s how they all got here? When Europe sends its people, they’re not sending the best,” Trump said, rolling his eyes. “Who needs those people? It might as well say, `Give us your rapists, your criminals, your drug dealers …. your coddled terrorists.’ “
The article appeared under the “Entertainment” section of the Huffington Post, but the only other indication that it was a work of satire was a small “satire” tag at the bottom of the article, which led to some reader confusion.
But that wasn’t the first satirical article about President Trump removing the statue of liberty. The satire website The Spoof ran an article in September 2016 under the headline, “Trump Wants To Deport Statue of Liberty,” that begins:
GOP presidential candidate, Donald Trump, demanded today that the statue of liberty be torn down and sent back to France, which gifted the statue to the U.S. He held a press conference on Liberty Island in New York Harbor where the statue is located.
Trump stated that the enormous statue was sent to the U.S. because of a proposal of Edouard de Labulaye, a French political thinker.
“He believed in the radical, seditious ideas of the 18th century enlightenment. He advocated revolution to establish democracy. If he were alive today he’d believe in the caliphate which Isis seeks to establish by overthrowing governments,” stated Mr. Trump.
Trump then said, “We Americans must understand de Labulaye, if he came to America today, would not pass the “ideological purity test” I have proposed for immigrants.”
The article was identified clearly as satire — but rumors that Trump would remove the Statue of Liberty persisted. And, as it turns out, stories about removing the Statute of Liberty aren’t very original. The same rumors circulated during President Obama’s time in office. The American Spectator made that claim in a report under the headline, “Say Goodbye to the Statue of Liberty,” but later issued a correction that implied the original story was a joke.