Thursday, June 01, 2006

History and Politics - Hiroshima and Nagasaki

God explains ...

In the United States, you do not teach your children everything there is to know about your country's decision to drop atom bombs in two Japanese cities, killing or maiming hundreds of thousands of people. Rather, you give them the facts as you see them - and as you want them to see them.

When an attempt is made to balance this point of view with the point of view of another - in this case, the Japanese - you scream and rage and rant and rave and jump up and down and demand that schools don't dare even think about presenting such data in their historical review of this important event. Thus, you have not taught history at all, but politics.

History is supposed to be an accurate, and full, account of what actually happened. Politics is never about what actually happened. Politics is always one's point of view about what happened.

History reveals, politics justifies. History uncovers; tells all. Politics covers; tells only one side.

Politicians hate history truly written. And history, truly written, speaks not so well of politicians, either.

Yet you are wearing the Emperor's New Clothes, for your children ultimately see right through you. Children taught to critically think look at your history and say, "My, how my parents and elders have deluded themselves." This, you cannot tolerate, so you drum it out of them. You do not want your children to have the most basic facts. You want them to have your take on the facts.

To stay with our example, do you really imagine it was absolutely necessary to drop the atom bomb on Hiroshima? What do your American historians say about the many reports, by those who claim to know more about what really happened, that the Japanese Empire had privately revealed to the United States its willingness to end the war before the bomb was dropped? How much of a part did revenge for the horror of Pearl Harbot play in the bombing decision? And, if you accept that dropping the Hiroshima bomb was necessary, why was it necessary to drop a second bomb?

It could be, of course, that your own account of all this is correct. It could be that the American point of view on all this is the way it actually happended. That is not the point of this discussion. The point here is that your educational system does not allow for critical thinking on these issues, or very many other issues, for that matter.

Can you imagine what would happen to a social studies or history teacher in Iowa who asked a class the above quesiions, inviting and encouraging the students to examine and explore the issues in depths and draw their own conclusions?

That is the point! You don't want your young ones drawing their own conclusions. You want them to come to the same conclusions you came to. Thus, you doom them to repeat the mistakes to which your conclusions led you.

Your world has run amok! On this I will agree. But your world has not run amok because of what you have allowed your schools to teach your children. It has run amok because of what you have not allowed them to teach.

You have not allowed your schools to teach that love is all there is. You have not allowed your schools to speak of love which is unconditional.


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