A recent article in the news this week turned my stomach…and made my heart ache for the naivety of American students. In an effort to make school interesting we have sacrificed important lessons in history.
I refer to the “enlightened” students at an American university who voted to remove the American flag because it was “offensive” to some students. The very fact that those students could do so without retaliation from the government or other repercussions ought to be a good enough reason to keep the Stars and Stripes flying high.
Unfortunately those same students need a lesson in history since apparently they’ve only heard a revised version of it. Let’s start with the whole reason for the National Anthem. According to popular history the Stars and Stripes is all about conquest; however, when Scott wrote the anthem the American fort was under attack by the British — the song recounted the tale of America standing in spite of all odds not glorifying some battle where Americans were the aggressors. In this case, America was the underdog defeating the mighty British Armada.
Fast forward to more recent history — history I lived through and saw first hand in the news. Tiananmen Square. College students peacefully protesting their government. Unlike American students, however, these were massacred, along with several thousand civilians and the truth of their story was covered up, hidden away. American students who are so ashamed of their country, their flag, their faith, their way of life, take for granted those very rights that allow them the freedom to be ashamed.
I can’t really blame those students, though. I used to be one. So sheltered, so naive, and willing to accept what I was taught in school as fact because some “expert” said so. Until I lived outside the United States for an extended period and began to question the philosophies news media and culture presented. Until I began reading not just what was written about the founding fathers, but their actual words and thoughts. Until I began questioning why regardless of capability, skin color, or gender, individuals can thrive and earn respect in the United States. You see, unlike my young friends on that university campus, I have lived in an oppressive society where gender, race, and diminished capacity mean certain individuals will never get an education, never hold a job, never be respected.
So my heart aches for a generation that allows buzz words, emotion instead of facts, and political correction to determine not just their actions, but their attitudes and beliefs. Perhaps they need a history lesson to remind them that “political correctness” was behind not just ethnic cleansing in Ethiopia, or the massacre in Tiananmen Square, but the extermination camps in Nazi Germany.