Worth Sharing #33

February 17, 2017

Liberty According To David Copperfield

Highlighted in season 4 episode 8 of The Americans (Wikipedia IMDB Amazon) is The Magic of David Copperfield V in which he (David Copperfield) makes the Statue of Liberty “disappear.” In it is this wonderful monologue on liberty (emphasis mine):

I want to tell you why I did this. My mother was the first one to tell me about the Statue of Liberty. She saw it first from the deck of a ship that brought her to America. She was an immigrant. She impressed upon me how precious our liberty is and how easily it can be lost. And then one day it occurred to me that I could show with magic how we take our freedom for granted. Sometimes we don’t realize how important something is until it’s gone. So I asked our government for permission to let me make the Statue of Liberty disappear… just for a few minutes. I thought if we faced emptiness where for as long as we can remember that great lady has lifted up her lamp… why then we might imagine what the world would be like without liberty. And we’d realize how precious our freedom really is. And then I would make the Statue of Liberty reappear by remembering the word that made it appear in the first place. The word is freedom. Freedom is the true magic. It’s beyond the power of any magician. But wherever one human being guarantees another the same rights he or she enjoys, we find freedom.

How long can we stay free? For just as long as we keep thinking, and speaking, and acting as free human beings. Our ancestors couldn’t. We can. And our children will.

—David Copperfield, The Magic of David Copperfield V


What I’m watching —

Keeping with The Americans theme, I loved The Beastie Americans, a mashup of clips from the show set to Sabotage by Beastie Boys. For reference, see the original music video.