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History Connection

 

Why History Matters

...and what you should do about it

You may have heard the saying, "Those who do not understand history are doomed to repeat it." The United States of America is a very good example of this.

Consider, for example, the War Between the States. This is widely misportrayed as a civil war. But it does not meet the definition of a civil war. In a civil war, insurgents try to take over the means of governing. This war was, instead, a war of secession. That really matters because if you understand why the South seceded, you understand why the United States actually lost that war. And, no, it was not about slavery. Anyone who reads Lincoln's various speeches and decrees can clearly see that.

Pursuant to this war, Lincoln was assassinated. This thwarted his ability to resolve the remaining issues and move the nation back toward a lawful federal government. When Johnson tried to fulfill that plan, he was impeached. This war was about subverting lawful government and installing a system run by a few powerful people instead of being run under a system of law. Black Americans who think somehow the nation won this war need to look at when, in history, lynching became common. It was after this war, not before. There's much more to this subject, and it's not our intent to cover it here. We just want to point out that it's a good example of why history matters.

Do you want to know why there aren't actual elections for federal offices in the United States, today? Read the biographies of major historical figures, read the letters they wrote to their contemporaries, and read contemporary records of events. Then you'll understand. Do you know why Teddy Roosevelt was shot in the chest? Why the banksters sent not one, but five assassins to kill Andrew Jackson? Do you know what Kermit and the other Teddy Roosevelt children thought of FDR and why? Understanding the answers to these questions is only part of the fundamental knowledge needed to be a properly informed voter in the USA today.

While it's good to know your own nation's history (regardless of what nation it is--Russia, Germany, Canada, Mexico, etc.), you should also know some history of other nations. Americans (Mexicans, Canadians, citizens of the USA, and other American citizens) should know some history of China. But they should know a great deal of European history. Why is this the case? Because there are lessons and parallels you can apply to your own situation. You can understand much about your own culture and about the cultures of people in countries that are important to today's leading nations.

Understanding ancient history rounds out your intellect and gives you perspective. What do you know about the Maya? The Roman Empire? Many people are stuck in a mindset that doesn't permit understanding how things came to be. This leaves them intellectually stunted. Political analysts often refer to the Roman Empire today, because they are watching the collapse of the American Empire. Not long ago, the Soviet Empire collapsed for similar reasons.

How can you become history-literate? You don't need to take a history class to do that. Well-written histories, and there are many, are quite enjoyable to read. You can also read personal letters (or facsimiles thereof) written in various periods. A very good way to get a good dose of historical education is via the audiobook. Your public library probably has these available for free download.

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