Crossposted from ePluribus Media. This piece is a reflection - semi-meta - upon our history and future, as framed by a sobering set of thoughts & reflections posted by Brandon Friedman on Twitter late Wednesday (14 Sept 2011).
From Brandon Friedman (@BrandonF) via Twitter, about 11:30 pm EST:
If you watch the Ancestry.com TV ads, you always see people who find wonderful, redeeming stories about their families.What they don’t prepare you for is that you also find the names and dollar values of the people your family used to own.Warren 24 years old, yellow color, $1,500; Mease a man 28 yrs old, black color, $1,400;Nettie 20 yrs old, black color, and her children, $1,700; Sarah 17 yrs old and her children, $750; India 52 yrs old black color, $350.
No idea what became of them.
Those are sobering thoughts that harken back to a darker part of our national heritage - a part that we have not left fully behind, when slavery and indentured servitude were used to build the nation on the backs of others.
We'd like to think we are now a "civilized" nation, but the current political trends are attempting to justify "austerity" and return to effectively similar economic conditions and labor relations - renamed, to seem more modern and acceptable, yet still wrong & still a form of inherent indentured servitude.
That's what the combined GOP & Tea Party are pushing for. That's what the Blue Dog democrats are not fighting against.
That's what our history, once, rejected and grew beyond - much to the chagrin of those who feel no empathy for others not of their blood, not of their perceived station or worth.
That's what hatred, bigotry, hypocrisy and narcissism has wrought, disguised by updated, intentionally deceptive terminology and intellectually dishonest 'reasoning.'
History exists. We must learn from it to grow, and not allow those who would re-write it force us to re-live it - to re-fight the fights that made us stronger as a nation & as a people.
Our parents & grandparents fought and won the right for our nation to grow & evolve. The unevolved, self-centered cretins who are still fighting to undo those victories and to stunt that growth must be recognized & called out, prevented from spreading their contagion and intellectual dishonesty, or our future is destined to be wasted on re-living the past, instead of actually building a better, stronger future for ourselves, our families and our descendants.
If we can but grasp the meaning of the lessons that reflection upon our history can provide, that alone can help make the difference between whether we own our future or are pwned by our past.