Who Is to Blame for History's Atrocities?
I ran across this statement the other day and I'd like to respond to it.
"Anglo men have murdered and enslaved almost everything they put their hands on in the development of western civilization because of their greed."
The statement was in response to a documentary the author had seen about how America treated the Hawaiians during the late 1800s. He then came to the conclusion, based on the record of Hawaii's annexation and eventual rise to statehood that Anglo men were responsible for most of the murder and enslavement that created Western Civilization. The idea is not his alone. It's a growing meme promoted by those who wish to enlist people of color in the march toward progressive socialism which is supposed to heal the damage done by Anglo Men.
The gentleman is wrong, however in his assumption. In all the history of the world, it's not just Anglo Men who have sinned against their fellow man in the march to power. Men of all races, who have lusted to who hold power over their fellow beings, have proven quite capable of the most unimaginable atrocities. Asian men, African men, Indian, Celtic, Native American, Hispanic, Scandinavian, Caucasian and even Polynesian and aboriginal men have inflicted horrific things on their fellow humans simply because they had the power to do so.
It's not about the skin color, it's about the condition of the soul beneath the skin. One wonders what might have happened had Ghengis Khan or Shaka Zulu or one of the Chinese Emperors managed to gain as much power and technological superiority over surrounding nations as did the British or even the Americans of the 1800s. We are already beginning to get an inkling of what Muslim nations are capable of when they get hold of power and weapons with which to murder their enemies.
It's a soul problem, not a skin problem. No race has yet managed to totally escape it. On the whole Western Civilization has managed to corral it's lust for mass murder as well as any civilization thus far. We have at least proven willing to sacrifice our own lives to stop mass murderers from doing what they do. Our record is spotty, sure, but not many other great nations have even tried to do the right thing.
Even the Crusaders did some decent things and many of them meant well and actually attempted to act in a Christian manner toward the natives of the Holy Land, despite the hatchet job the revisionist historians have done on them and the puffery extended by the liberal historians of the past hundred years toward their Muslim foes.
Western Civilization has only been capable of over-powering its enemies and forcing its will on others, because we have managed to accumulate more power. I don't think it's a race thing at all, unless you suppose that white people are smarter and better organized than other races. I personally, think that's a racist attitude. I believe that, ironically enough, it was because Christianity brought long periods of peace and prosperity to the Western world, that the Western World had the time and surplus energy to trade, innovate and develop the technical and financial strength to build great military strength ostensibly for peace.
As in all human civilizations, evil men among us have unfortunately used power for evil purposes as evil men will. In spite of that, Anglo nations like Britain, The United States, Canada and Australia are far from an axis of evil. Even South Africa, which was at one point a stain on Anglo-Saxon civilization, eventually gave up its evil ways to a large extent. This happened, not because people of color conducted communist guerrilla operations, but because the nation's white leadership came under an overwhelming barrage of international shaming, most particularly from their fellow white people. Eventually, their Christian upbringing kicked in and overcame their lust for power and apartheid ended, not with a bang but a whimper.
Arguably, one of the most devastating blows to South African apartheid was a concert tour by a white folk singer, Paul Simon, who demonstrated that whites and blacks could work together for a beautiful purpose and who showed the human side of apartheid's oppressed people to everyone in the world. The government got more grief after Simon's tour than it could bear from outraged fellow Anglos. Ironically, Simon took a lot of criticism from leaders of the black rebellion too. Why? Because he had not paid proper obeisance to them before he had the temerity to sing with African black musicians – a peek at the dangers coming with the change of leadership.
The damnation of Anglo Men, neglects to discuss nations such as China, the Muslim Nations and Russia whose human rights records are abysmal.
It's true that nobody has the same level of power as the Western Anglo Nations, but, the idea that white people are just naturally more evil than everyone else is rather racist if you ask me. We white Anglo men can't jump either – except for my friend Mike Maloney who, as my opponent on the basketball court seemed to have wings. For one to ascribe the propensity for evil to white men alone or even mostly, passes de facto judgement on an entire people strictly by the color of their skin. Does the "white men cause all the trouble in the world" faction really believe what they are saying is not racist?
And, given that the Anglo nations are also, by and large, predominantly Christian nations, that damns Christianity by association. Really, what are you trying to say? I mean white people are already wallowing in guilt now for things somebody else did a hundred years ago. I see precious few Chinese being taken to task for their nations history of human rights abuse or for that matter, Russia, Germany, Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, India, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Chad, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Somalia, Spain, Italy (the Romans were a pretty rough bunch) or any other nation, tribe or culture on the planet.
If other nations are so peace-loving, tell you what. Let's give all our guns, nukes, planes and warships to any nation of any color you care to - any nation in Africa for instance. Anybody want to do that? (Insert chirping of crickets here)
The only reason that Caucasian (not just Anglo) men ran so many big empires was the accident of technology. Nobody in the "white men are all bad" camp has yet suggested that it is because Anglos are smarter and make better weapons, grow more food to feed their troops and come up with better tactics to kick the butts of their enemies. That would be to acknowledge white superiority. What they are saying smacks of whining by the losing side because their opponents were smarter and stronger.
Even I am not suggesting that white men are smarter, and I am one, so that idea would make me feel quite superior and like anyone else, I rather enjoy feeling superior. If you do support the notion that there's something about white genes that make us more willing to dominate and abuse other races, however, you might also have to entertain the notion that there is also something in our genes that makes us smarter, more organized and tech savvy than some other races.
This is not my opinion. I want to make that clear. But such a notion could be extrapolated from the very same argument that white man's greed is the source of most of the human rights outrages in the world – which, in fact, they are not. The idea that most power has been in the hands of white folk is hardly accurate.
Look at the great empires.
· Babylon - Semitic, not Anglo or Caucasian
· Han Dynasty (China) - Asian not Caucasian
· Persian Empire – Semitic and Caucasian
· Greek Empire - Caucasian, not strictly Anglo
· Roman Empire - Caucasian/African (the curly hair came from considerable mixing with Africans and other races of color along the Mediterranean.
· Holy Roman Empire - Now those guys were mostly Saxon rather than Anglo
· Charlemagne - Celtic/Gallic, not Anglo
· Mayan Empire – Amerind (built channels to carry off the rivers of blood that ran from the altars of their pyramids during sacrificing season).
· Aztec Empire – Amerind (ditto the Mayan rivers of blood plus a little)
· Peruvian Empire – Amerind (no slouches at oppressing neighbours and human sacrifice – children were favorite subjects)
· Spanish Empire - Hispanic, not Anglo with a good deal of African gene stock
· British Empire - Anglo/Briton/Celtic/Saxon/Nordic
· Napoleonic Empire - Gallic not Anglo
· German attempts at empire – Saxon/Prussian Caucasians
· Japanese Empire – Asian (they even considered the Chinese to be inferiors)
· Soviet Union – Caucasian mostly not Anglo
· Maoist China - Asian
· American Hegemony – hardly an empire Anglo/Saxon/Celtic/Pictish/Italian/Irish/Greek/African/Asian/Amerind and whatever else you can think of.
Anglos are a decided historical minority in the world of big, abusive empire builders. America was, in point of fact, guilty of some atrocities like in Hawaii and among the Native American tribes. We ran arguably unjust wars against both Mexico and Spain who, in the case of Mexico, we left with their independence when it was over, got rid of an arguably awful dictator and paid them for the land we took at a time when they really needed the cash more than the land. Nobody, who lives in the lands the progressive left claims that we stole from Mexico, wants to be given back to Mexico. The Spanish American war left us with the Philippines and Cuba and the odd island, but we gave those back to their people for better (in the case of the Philippines) or for worse (in the case of Cuba). We also rescued the Philippines when the Japanese overran them in WWII at great cost, then gave them their independence and piled on the financial aid that helped them achieve it. We only kept Puerta Rico and some Pacific Islands as protectorates, because they didn't want to go and they still don't. They like being Americans
And while we're talking atrocities, the Japanese committed some doozies in WWII. We managed not to hold that against them, to rebuild their nation and to make them a major trading partner. Same with the Germans. The African nations have taken slaughter to a particularly hideous level lately. The Muslim nations have pretty much proclaimed jihad against everybody. The Sri Lankans are at each other's throats all the time. Hindus in India used to keep special villages where they fed everyone right up until they went in and harvested a few to use in particularly barbaric sacrificial rituals. Mao starved millions of his own people, not counting the millions murdered in political prisons. The Russians really whacked off a lot of folks in Stalin's day. The Cambodians had the killing fields. Oh, there's plenty of responsibility for atrocity to go around.
Yes, some Americans committed atrocities against native Americans (who were not entirely blameless in the conflict) and Hawaiians (no strangers to violence against one another when they happened to be the stronger of the two opposing sides). We feel so bad about what a few Americans did more than a century ago, that Congress still cannot pass a Congressional appropriation without adding some special money in it for native Americans.
While it was American white males, who have been responsible for most of the atrocities committed in our name, it must also be remembered that it was white American males who provided most of the manpower to put a stop to it - often at shattering costs. The sacrifices made by white American soldiers during the Civil War in fighting and dying to end slavery should count for something toward expunging their forefathers' guilt. White soldiers also fought hard to stop Hitler and Tojo and to liberate Iraq and Afghanistan and to try and prevent Communist aggressors from over-running South Vietnam. However badly their commanders mishandled those conflicts or race relations within our forces, Anglo males did do their part to try and protect people who were being persecuted, murdered and exploited.
Of all the armies in the world, it is American armies that have long stood up to the truly evil guys in the world. When we defeat even the most evil of enemies, we make peace, then rebuild their country, and give it back to them. No other nation in the whole of history has done that as consistently as the nations of Anglo men. Considering where our civilization came from, I don't think we've done too badly with this one. And we pretty much constantly beat ourselves up for not doing a better job of it.
If one looks at the past history of the Hawaiian Kings, themselves – the ones who inspired the harsh judgment of Anglo men in general that this article led with – the Polynesian kings can be shown to have committed plenty of atrocities themselves quite without the help of any white men at all. History notations pass over systematized extermination of your enemies and ritual human sacrifice as though it was a mere aberration and not the horror and perversion that such practice entailed.
Delve into the history of any country you care to think of and you will find powerful men of every race and culture imaginable committing the most horrific atrocities. They may cloak it with the excuse of religion, humanity, social justice, Marxism. You name it and some human with power has done it, merely in the name of gaining and preserving his power.
It is sin, not skin, my friend. Who is most to blame by virtue of their skin color is a political game played by those who would use our physical differences to divide us and conquer us for their own purposes. In reality, the color of the individual ordering atrocities is more a matter of who happens by chance, by theft or by dint of hard work to own the biggest guns, than it is the fault of their genes.