The history of religious strife holds lessons
I am one of those Democrats who was very surprised that our intelligent, smart, direct and natural-born leader, John Kerry, lost the presidential election. But I have accepted the outcome and am moving on, anxious to see what changes, if any, are forthcoming from our elected leader, President Bush.I really don’t like politics; I shy away from political events because sometimes politics interferes with good government. And what do I do? I work in government. I love what I do.Now that the ads are over and the analysts are explaining what happened, I am most amazed about the “morality” factor, in that a narrow definition of morality was a major determinant in the outcome of this election. I learned a lot this year by appreciating the long European history of religious oppression. In Eastern Europe, religious battles wiped out millions of people for thousands of years. The Catholics overtaking (killing) the Protestants who later trounced (killed) the Catholics, the establishment of the Church of England and the eradication of Jewish populations just a mere 70 years ago. The Middle East has been engaged in religious struggle for 2,000 years. Europeans are astutely aware that religion needs to stay out of the political agenda.They suffered too much. Religious intolerance interferes with the basic delivery of services, breeds hatred, ignorance, fear and is ultimately divisive.Is our youthful county following in the same footsteps as historical Europe?Is the ballot box enough to be our weapon of choice? Our politicians need to fast forward this phenomenon while reading world history books. If we don’t let the hot air out of this bag, we may be in for some very difficult times ahead.Or will we see flocks of Americans departing our soil to live in a place without religious persecution? All that creative capital departing the USA will redefine “outsourcing.” Funny how history repeats itself. It can easily change locations because history chases human nature and is not limited to political or cultural boundaries. Let’s learn from the past so we can fix the future – now.
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