Most of the time when I hear a young person trying to use history to make a point I’m a bit perplexed. I’m thrilled that they picked up something while zoning out in class. I’d like to think that my tax dollars aren’t completely wasted and I’m sure the young persons parents feel much the same. However, historical events are most often taken so far out of context that a false story can be assumed to have validity. Especially if we try to analyze historic events by present day standards. Life, even only 100 years ago in the span of mankind’s creation, was not the horrible existence that it is now, it was princesses and dragons.
The truth about history, all history comes down to one simple word; violence. From the moment of the big bang everything in our universe is the result of some kind of violence just like our home of planet earth. Just the right kinds of asteroids carrying just the right kinds of DNA strains created vibrant life on our planet. From the moment the smallest organism entered our world various creatures have been competing for resources from the great dinosaurs to mankind and most of them ate other creatures to survive.
Mankind is not unlike other earth creatures when it comes to feeding on its own whether for resources or because of stressful times. Most of the men who ever walked the earth never saw 40 or even 30 years of life. Peace, justice and liberty are concepts that are as new as a morning rain. Life on this planet has been violent and cruel from the moment life appeared until the moment you are reading this.
Did you know it used to be common place for the children of aristocracy to murder their parents? Or for a son to murder not just his father but all of his brothers often murdering his brothers with a knowing father who wanted only the strongest to rule in his place. The unwashed masses often sold their own children into slavery just for a few coins or a chicken. Rome was once one of the most dangerous places to be the Pope so little wonder there is a mountain sized wall guarding the Vatican. Imagine being Gods messenger on earth and having to wonder every time you put food into your mouth whether you are eating the last piece of food you ever will.
How would you have liked to have been a beautiful maiden in an Inca or Mayan city? They would take the most beautiful maidens and either slit their throats, burn them alive, or cut their hearts from their chests while it was still beating. Those poor innocent South Americans huh. Too bad the Europeans showed up and ruined their fun. In the middle east people have been getting their heads and hands chopped off for pretty minor “crimes” for centuries. The Chinese became experts at torture. Children with disabilities were killed. The history of the world is violence.
Now I know you’ve been humming John Lennon’s Imagine in your heads or thinking about asking why can’t there be peace and harmony but in modern day times the people who claim to want peace and harmony are some of the most violent citizens in the world and most often leave a path of destruction in their wake. Some seem to believe that they can simply demand things and have them given to them. Most claim to protest for peace but inevitable are protesting for special privileges and wealth redistribution. Stealing from others is not a nonviolent act.
The point here is, the world is what it is end of story. The upside is that things have gotten a whole lot better for the people of the entire planet than they were even 100 years ago. Downside? We may have come too far, too fast and have now become the spoiled lot who would rather destroy if it can’t get what it wants immediately.