A full understanding of human history can keep us safe from tyranny’s cauldron.

Nero fiddled, Hitler ethnically cleansed, Lincoln died in preserving the republic and unity, Martin Luther King died in his fight for equal rights, and G.W. Bush used panic and fear to start a needless war. The preceding are just a few examples of a history of humankind that clearly describes some leaders and their leadership as either accidental or intentionally histrionic, and others that strive for unity and equality for all at great cost to themselves.

In the absence of a clear understanding and appreciation for both those sacrifices and moments of madness, modern humans may not understand or appreciate the legacies of those leaders that fought for equality and unity and those that used fear and prejudice to induce panic and support for the suppression of liberty.  Lacking a clear knowledge about both legacies we have only a political publicist’s definition of democracy which misleads us to  stumble blindly from one pothole of damaged governance to another. Those stumbles could, as history has documented, lead us right to the edge of a deep, boiling cauldron of tyranny.

History lessons sometimes come to us in unusual, superficially fictional ways, that are really lively messages of both warnings and celebration. An example is the story, Alice in Wonderland. It is both a delightful children’s story, but also a definitely adult dissertation on political and social failings and dangers. In other words human history does not have to be as bitter and dry as burnt toast. The charge is to present it in a way that gets comfortably and actively established in our memory. Wacky, histrionic politicians suddenly become models of the Mad Hatter. Dedicated, honest and progressive leaders are best represented by themselves in literature and in live news presentations such as Lincoln’s famed and important Gettysburg Address.

Yes, many historical moments have high emotion (anger, sorrow, joy, relief, etc) attached to them, and this is not wrong. This aids in insuring that those critical steps in both our stumbles and our steps forward are remembered as both reminders and lessons. Right now, real history is being severely distorted to suit political advantage or to negate policies or practices some individuals and organizations wish to banish from our memory and conscience. When this happens we are weakened by virtue of our loss of understanding of the continuity of both our progress and our pratfalls.

Is there any hope that we can begin to think for ourselves? Is there a way we can reach back into our memory and recall human history? If we can then  that will serve to both encourage and to also alert us to the proper path we should be traveling to continue our progress and to sustain liberty? Now of course, we must truly understand democracy and how it differs from the ideal concept of a republic which our forefathers crafted for us. We then can use it as a measure of our own nation’s status and future. Without this understanding we stand to either over-react and destroy our republic or under-react and let an oligarchy replace the glorious freedom we have enjoyed and fought to preserve.

Lastly there are those who rely upon our ignorance or disregard of human history to persuade us to accept some twisted mix of an oligarchy and pseudo-democracy to produce a nation that is now governed not for we-the-people but for the elite few. When this happens, history is replaced by histrionics expressed to induce fear, suspicion and acceptance of our own loss of freedom and equality as the inevitable. We, in our ignorance have been duped by the few. We must not let this happen and only our complete understanding of our beginnings and our future will enable our defense of our freedom and well-being.

Listen carefully to the political advocates. Measure their proclamations and promises against the real history of this nation and of humankind. Look well beyond your immediate needs and hopes into the promise of the future. If that promise is not visible then we have been  blinded and our minds imprisoned.

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Tyranny’s Cauldron – wisdomquarterly.blogspot.com

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