Two women are tied for the title of Most Beautiful Woman in America. Veritable goddesses, they show no trace of vanity. Their beauty is a gift to America and they deserve our attention.
Unlike Victoria’s Secret Angels, these two women are ageless; their attractiveness becomes more apparent with time. They echo the strength and grace of Michelangelo’s David statue. Their gazes are determined looks of confidence; the veins in their muscular arms protrude; their stances are those of female warriors.
Lately, our country’s leaders seem to have forgotten about liberty, truth, beauty, and justice. EPA planes have been snooping on cattle ranchers; Sen. Diane Feinstein wants to take away our Second Amendment rights; Washington agencies are clandestinely collecting our cell phone numbers and tracking our calling patterns, and the IRS has targeted patriot groups while spending over $4 million in taxpayer dollars on employee conferences featuring Cupid Shuffle line dancing and a “Star Trek” parody.
Lady Justice and Lady Liberty are supremely beautiful because justice and liberty are foundational to the American experiment and to the U.S. Constitution. We must remember to regularly contemplate their stunning countenances:
Justice lives in a palace of marble. She is the gatekeeper of the U.S. Supreme Court Building, and her countenance appears three times within the Courthouse. Justice takes her name from the Greek goddess Themis and the Roman goddess Justitia. Sometimes she appears with a blindfold to represent her impartiality, but other times she appears without a blindfold because she has a clairvoyant eye for the truth. She often holds a set of scales and a sword in her arms.
Inside the Courthouse, Justice appears in a frieze sculpted into the wall by Adolph Weinman. In this depiction, she looks almost masculine because of her great strength. She fixes her eyes ahead with sovereign determination while holding both hands on her sheathed sword, ready and willing to administer justice and protect the innocent.
We desperately need Justice in America today. Practicing lawyers are saddened that Attorney General Eric Holder, the top lawyer in the country, has openly abused the justice system for the Obama administration’s agenda, unconstitutionally snooping on journalists from Fox News, the Associated Press and the New York Times.
Former prosecutor Judge Jeanine Pirro indicted Holder on her June 1 Fox News show, Justice with Judge Jeanine. She chastened Holder for his rogue leadership of the Department of Justice: “What are you gonna do, one-up the Constitution? We’ve already got a First Amendment!”
Whereas Justice graces marble, Liberty is more comfortable on the water—bracing against harsh 50 mph winds and holding a torch in the air to light the way for freedom. She welcomes visitors to America from her perch in New York Harbor. She represents the American victory of independence from Britain, holding a tablet that reads: July IV MDCCLXXVI (July 4, 1776).
Liberty does not believe in whips and chains. Broken shackles and chains are scattered at her feet because French sculptor Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi, her designer, wanted us to remember how we escaped from tyranny under Great Britain. He clothed Liberty in a stola and palla, the clothing worn by the free peoples of ancient Rome and Greece. Atop her head she wears a crown featuring a halo-like “diadem,” symbolizing her transcendence and a “nimbus” (rays) symbolizing her enlightened philosophy.
Measuring 111’1” from head to toe, Liberty soars far above humans. She stands above man’s petty disagreements, special interests, bribery, corruption, and cunning. She greets anyone entering the harbor with a determined and objective welcome. Her face says: “You have come to the land of freedom, and freedom requires constant vigilance.”
Bartholdi enlisted French engineer Alexandre Gustave Eiffel to build a secondary skeletal framework and an iron pylon for his statue. Liberty awes us by her ability to withstand the assaults of the elements—Eiffel’s ingenuity allows her to move as if she is alive. Her 31-ton copper “skin” flexes nimbly with the wind, allowing her body to move up to three inches and her torch to sway up to six inches.
As long as we are free, we can weather any storm just as Lady Liberty does on Liberty Island in New York. Liberty allows us to roll with the punches and get through any challenge in life. When we are free, we can always find a way. If we lose our job, we can start our own business. If we want to reform society, we can speak our minds in the press.
Let us take time to reflect on the beauty of both Lady Justice and Lady Liberty. Their beauty lies in their truth, virtue, and strength. If we emulate their beauty, we will empower ourselves.