“Let’s make America great again!”
Again?? To when exactly are you referring that America was in its golden days? To the days of slavery with brutal physical, sexual, and civil abuse to those with black skin? To the days that rumors caused killings of women who were accused of witchcraft? To the days that not only could women not vote, but their careers were extremely limited and the wages were always less? To the days of vigilantes and anarchy in which the law of the land was only one of survival? The Wild West is often glorified in modern-day films. But in reality, it was an extremely dangerous rampage of selfishness. Whatever a man could get his hands on was his. Manifest destiny, mass murderings of Native tribes, scalping, near extinction of buffalo, bounty hunters, etc. Or maybe, to the Industrial Revolution? We owe our modern technology to the boom of invention in the 18th Century, but have we forgotten that such industry rode literally on the backs of children who worked 18 hour days 6 days a week or more in suffocating, chemical-filled factories, in meat production facilities reeking of rat feces and diseases, and infection among the urban people en masse? To the days of bad hygiene, in which sewage literally flew through the air, in which science hadn’t developed medicine to cure common illnesses, in which old wives’ tales and myths ran the bulk of medical practices and treatment?
I want to use Christopher Columbus as an example– the real story not of a God-fearing, selfless explorer but of a brutal rapist and violent man. Check out this short video, this other short video, and this truth revealing comic to get the true history of this man. The divinity-like caricature painted over the reality of such a key player in American history is the same utter denial of the truth of all of these other histories of America that I list above, just to name a few. The same inability to acknowledge the brutal, horrible, sexist, racist, disease-ridden, violence of America’s past rings true not just with Christopher Columbus, not just with all that I have pointed out above, but EVEN WITH the present!! I cringe to think about what our children will look back upon TODAY as brutality and freedom-deprivation.
So when, exactly, was America great?? If we value freedom, the fair and equal treatment of every human regardless of gender or sexuality (females and LBGTQ community), ethnicity (everything but white-skin), or religion (Muslims??), then not only has America never been great, but we have a long, LONG way to go.
The ONLY people who benefit by a going-back-to-the-past outlook are wealthy, straight, white men. Seriously, there is absolutely no evidence that America’s past benefitted anyone else more.