Changing History is Like Playing Twister
Is History Eradication the Answer?.
"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again." Maya Angelou
America, the beautiful! America where opportunity lives and all men are created equal. The Constitution, that even my great (more than one "great," and possibly three?) grandfather had a copy of, in his back pocket, during his trek from the Cape, in Southern Africa, to escape British oppression (sound familiar?), has been the means by which this country has risen to heights unbeknown in a relatively short time. The ones who were here, before the Western expansion, had little impact when compared to what was to come. Their dynamic was local and their "lack of development" (by Western standards) made them victims of their own inability to see a bigger picture that this " new" civilization was used to. This, by no means reflected a lack of intelligence, or that they were merely "savages," as they were often depicted. No, it just meant that their priorities were different. Their needs for body, soul and spirit were met in the land of the buffalo and the sky of the sun, moon and stars.
Now, however, things have changed. Is the majority merely a pawn of the minority, who successfully cries with a louder voice? This whole atmosphere becomes ripe for attempts to "wish away" history so that we could all forget the sins of our fathers. In a poignant letter to the editor, Thandeka Khoza, asked, in a South African newspaper,if all the statues fall, how will that improve the country? Will minorities have a better education? Will that automatically give women equal pay? Will the homeless be warmer? Will jobs be secure? Is the American dream accessible?
If we embrace history ,each statue can remind us of where we've been. Then with education, we can plan on never going there again. Maya Angelou was right, the only way to obliterate the inequities of our history is not to wipe it out, but use it as a reminder, not to live it again.