Posted by MMMMarcia on August 01, 2000 at 10:54:16:
In Reply to: Re: For all those who ponder the castingof stones- Italy and Stalin posted by Bill R on August 01, 2000 at 10:04:35:
: I think, in order for such things to never be repeated, there has to be the acceptance that normal people like you and I can be inflamed to support things we would never rationally accept unless stirred to do so by charismatic men or persuasive Governments feeding our baser elements and saying it is okay. WE all have those baser elements in some form. They can be fanned into flame if the right buttons are pushed. We would all like to believe it could not happen, WE would never do such things. If that were true, the Native American my not still own this continent, but he would not have been exterminated to the extent he was. If that were true, evil men would never have a political platform and public support for their ambitions.
>>I have been following this thread with great interest. My knowledge of history is so woefully inadequate that I don't feel comfortable in making comment along those lines...however, my knowledge of human beings is somewhat more soundly based, and Bill, I have to say that I agree with your sentiments in this regard 100%. You've expressed this very well, and who did what or when they did it seems to me to be far less important than WHY. If we do not understand what motives drive this type of base and hideous behavior, how will we ever even HOPE to change things?
: We have to accept our weaknesses and complicity before we can prevent recurrences. Don't we?
>>Absolutely. And this is NOT the same as making reparations of any kind for past misdeeds. It IS, rather, learning enough about the human psyche to enable us to live together in some sort of harmony and mutual respect. It is about understanding how to build a foundation of tolerance and acceptance in each individual, while learning how to conquer the demons of hate and fear of anyone different from ourselves. Until we are able as a species to accomplish an understanding of our own minds, how can we NOT continue to repeat these same atrocities in different places with different people, over and over again? How will we ever progress to a higher level?
: If we feed into the polarities, ANY polarity, we ensure that history repeats itself.
>>Yes, precisely. And I, personally, see most claims for reparations for past deeds as falling directly into a polarity category. Instead of fretting over the past, we need, in most cases, to let it GO. It's a done deal. Instead, why can't we look at how best to help each other TODAY, and move forward? To my mind, except from a perspective of LEARNING what happened in order to preserve history and/or avoid the same pitfalls, looking backward is just that: BACKWARD. I'll vote for moving FORWARD, every time.
Instead of asking "What can I get for injustices done 100 years ago?" why not ask, "What can I do TODAY to help ensure those kinds of injustices never occur again?"
Just my thoughts.
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