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History On Repeat

History On Repeat

I spent a few minutes last night going through my social media posts from four years ago, and pretty much all of them are focused on two things:

  1. The restrictions placed on our lives based on the fear of COVID
  2. The Black Lives Matter riots that happened at the end of May 

I posted in the middle of May 2020 about how happy I was that I could sit down and have a meal in a restaurant, and other friends around the country expressed their jealousy that I could perform such a simple act. We had allowed the .gov to control us to the point where I got dirty looks if I walked down a supermarket aisle the wrong way. 

Was COViD-19 a thing? Sure. I had a minor case of it, I had friends who contracted very severe cases of it, and friends of friends who died from it. Was our response appropriate and measured? At the time, I posted somewhat sarcastically that Sweden’s “hands-off” response to COVID was going to be our control group.

It turns out that the control group won this round. Sweden’s excess deaths due to COVID were the lowest of any European country. I was wrong, and next time, I’ll try to trust the people more and the government less. Will the government itself learn anything from this mess and be less authoritarian the next time something like this happens? Not hardly. 

On the subject of the BLM riots, I am noticing a not-so-strange comparison to the current Pro-Intifada riots on college campuses around the country. These pro-terrorist riots seem to be popping up spontaneously all over the place, just like the BLM riots did, and just like the BLM riots, they’re not satisfied with just protesting. The organizers themselves are drawing comparisons to the riots of 1968, creating a mythology where it was those riots which ended the U.S. involvement in the VIetnam War.   

There’s two problems with this idea. The first is, they didn’t end the war, which went on until 1975, after Congress cowardly pulled the plug on funding Vietnam’s anti-communist efforts in 1973. In the past three years, we have turned our backs on Afghanistan and the Ukraine. I’m pretty certain we understand what will happen if we turn our backs on Israel.

The second problem with this line of thinking is that Israel ain’t Vietnam. South Vietnam at the time was a cesspool of military authoritarianism and corruption, and the only reasons we propped them up in the first place is because they weren’t communist. Israel, on the other hand, is the only functioning democracy in the Middle East, has full rights for people of all creeds, colors and genders and is pretty much 100% in-line with our morals and ethics.

I mean, there is a reason why they call it “Judeo-Christian values,” after all. 

On top of this, Israel has the support of countries like Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Kinda hard to say that Israel hates Arabs when it’s the Arabs themselves who are supporting Israel. 

Will we see another “Summer of Love” this year like we did in 1968? Probably. Will it have the same effect on our culture as that inglourious moment in history? Probably not. To borrow a line from a band that was around at the time, we won’t get fooled again. 

But stay frosty, just in case. 

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