"Stealers-Keepers" Being Questioned

“Stealers-Keepers” Questioned

 

By Elton Camp



If something has been stolen long enough

Then is it all right simply to keep the stuff?



The Guggenheim some art to Italy has sent

Illicit when bought, they had more than a hint



To the original owner, stolen stuff should go

At least United States law tells everyone so



Demands of owners have museums in a scare

Requests for return of what shouldn’t be there



Greece for return of the Elgin Marbles does speak

The way England got them of larceny does reek



Egypt, country of origin of the Rosetta Stone

Says it was an outrage how it came to be gone



If your fine automobile some crook should steal,

What if you should spot the thief behind the wheel?



“That property’s mine and I absolutely want it back.

And from you, you thief, I want to hear no slack.”



Will Mexico perhaps someday make a similar claim

“For stealing half our whole country you are to blame.”



We were told of “Manifest Destiny” back in school

It made American imperialism sound sort of cool



It glosses over an exercise in raw military powers

“People, what you have is now going to be ours.”



If, to endorse  this idea, yourself you did first find

Did the idea about Mexico then change your mind?



It’s easy to be in favor of justice in the abstract

Not as much in the face of an inconvenient fact



On these controversies, I take no particular side

Demands are intensifying and are harder to hide




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Synopsis
Should stolen property be returned to its original owner?
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