The holiday we celebrate every year to mark the Revolutionary War of Independence from British Royal oppression in the eighteenth century is always bittersweet to me.
Whereas many of the men who signed the Declaration of Independence that stated that ALL men had the RIGHT to pursue happiness and that all men were equal, owned slaves and didn’t seem to see that ALL men were definitely not “equal” and could not pursue “happiness.” Eventually another war would free these slaves, but still didn’t make them “equal” to other men.
Unfortunately, in our world today, there are many wars being fought in the name of “freedom” that are not for “freedom” at all but are to violently bring others under the oppression and domination of others in the name of “religion.” Those wars are not about religious beliefs, but about power. I just finished a book called The Lucifer Principle, A Scientific Expedition into the Forces of History, by Howard Bloom. This excellent and well researched and foot noted book goes deeply into the biological and sociological reasons for violence. It documents how wars from the beginning of time until today were fought for “principles” that were most of the time simply memes to “justify” violence, and most of the time without conscience.
We see it now on the nightly news where some young American has gone to the Middle East to become a fighter and suicide bomber. We wonder why people who are ordinary citizens, raised in a “normal” home would become willing to die for these “causes.”
We remember the 9/11 attack which was so stunning and senseless to us, unbelievable at best. The pictures of people leaping from high buildings to avoid the flames is etched on my brain and cannot be forgotten. These innocent victims of someone else’s twisted belief system died horrible deaths.
In his book, Mr. Bloom points to the biological roots of violence that is in our brain, he points to the social systems that cause people to act on these biological impulses, not even realizing that what they do has a biological root.
The Bible says that “the love of money is the root of all evil” but it isn’t JUST the love of money, it is also the love of POWER and STATUS within a social group, and those who are willing to resort to violence to get it.
Mr. Bloom points out that in the elections in Germany before the Nazis took power, almost 70% of the people voted against the Nazis, but then Hitler killed off the powerful men who opposed him and took over, with many people becoming devout Nazis and following his violent psychopathic lead.
The world has never been safe from these people who are violent, and it never will be safe from them. While we all want peace among people we know and among nations, we must not ever forget that there ARE people who will kill innocent victims because of their religion, race, national origin or sex. Our country must remain strong in order to deter others from attacking us, and keep a vigil to prevent attacks like Pearl Harbor and 9/11 and recognize the fact that there are evil people, there are evil groups, and that these people are very capable of violence to get what they want. Whether it is a man or woman who robs a liquor store, or a dictator who wants to rule the world, we must be wary of these individuals and not let down our guard. Yet, we do not want to live in terror of these people, but be cautious as individuals and as a nation.
God bless America