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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Hopefully, A Blog for Thought

This is Steven Petrick posting.

I have read a lot of history. Reading it does not necessarily mean that I know what really happened. It has been written that "history is a joke the present plays on the past." The history that is taught is often twisted to reflect "contemporary norms."

And history is also taught from a point of view. You might think you know American history, but you would be surprised to know how our history as taught in classes on world history in China, or Russia, or even France.

For that matter, you may have just a smattering of knowledge of the fact that there was a "Mexican-American War," or that we twice (three times if you count the Fenians after the Civil War) invaded Canada (during the Revolutionary War, and again in the War of 1812), and they have their own views of those incidents (it is a bigger point in Mexican history since in their view it was an aggressive war of conquest on our part in which over half of what was then Mexico was absorbed into the United States).

The biggest thing I have learned from reading history is that often the leaders think they have "new ideas" and are ignorant that those ideas have been tried before, and have often led to catastrophe. Because it has also been written that "those who refuse to study the past are doomed to repeat it."