To state we live in dangerous times is both obtuse and minimizing. We lived in dangerous times long before our founding fathers came together with an idea...a revolutionary idea. From the moment Europeans step foot on American soil, there have been dangerous times.
Americans tend to define ourselves in terms of where we are going, not where we come from. Many in our society say that history holds little importance for us because we believe we live in a time so different from our ancestors. Their experiences could not shed light on our circumstances. They say that man’s intelligence has evolved and that anything from the past is outdated and irrelevant to us. Therefore, the past is worthless in the minds of many people. Our ignorance of the past is not the result of a lack of information, but of a choice.
History does matter. George Orwell wrote, “He who controls the past, controls the future.” Our view of the past affects how we respond to our present circumstances. If our view of history is wrong, we are likely to make wrong choices today. These wrong choices will lead to further conflicts and a waste of resources that can eventually lead to the fall of an entire civilization.
The real question that matters though is who controls that information about our past. How we are taught or learn history is as important as the actual historical events. Here's where I start having a problem...
The reason we live in such dangerous times, in my opinion, is the vast amounts of information available to most everyone in our society. For the sake of this post, I'm referring specifically to our country, and I'm not limiting that to just Christians in the U.S. (or Christian history). America is made up of a vast diversity of interest and perspectives, and that is what makes us so great...as long as everyone stays true to certain foundational principles, let's say...Constitutional principles.
Here's where we start getting into trouble in these current days. The tremendous amounts of information and misinformation available combined with a constant barrage of talking heads promoting their own agendas (Obermann, O'Reilly, Beck, Limbaugh and Maddow to name a very few) has blurred the 'facts' of factual history. People no longer research historical facts on their own to gain a personal perspective...most rely on learning history from the point of view of a school teacher, The History Channel, or even worse from talk radio/television.
My intention is not to apply the Pigeon Hole Principle to a complex, somewhat polarizing issue...but an intelligent, rational debate requires the element of intelligence...and that my friends can not be found on the pages of Wikipedia or over the airwaves alone.
To be continued...