Talking Cultural Diversity

a discussion board for cultural and diversity issues by Thomas Kochman and Jean Mavrelis

Here We Go Again

By Tatyana Fertelmeyster - 04.03.2011

Once in a while History gets bored of moving straight ahead and starts running around in circles.

All of it had happened already and here we go again.

Inquisitors believed in legitimacy of their courts and did not hesitate much to burn screaming fires all over Europe.

Hitler did not bother much with courts. He burned books and then decided that burning readers and writers can be much more effective.

Stalin packed gulag camps with people who wrote, or were possibly thinking about writing, a “wrong” book and who were literate enough to possibly read something and get an unauthorized thought in their head.

Old-girl History has seen plenty of those who illuminated their righteousness by feeding books and human lives to fires.

And here we go again.

On March 20th a bunch of church-goers in Florida held court and after much deliberation found the Qur’an guilty.

Under the watchful eye of their leader Pastor Terry Jones the “heretic” was burned. A light of righteousness glowed over Florida.

It burned strong enough to give an equally righteous excuse to fanatics in Pakistan where at least three churches have been set on fire since that day. It gave a feeling of righteous fury to a mob in Afghan city of Mazar-i-Sharif and now at least eight families –the number keeps growing– UN workers are crying over the death of their loved ones.

Will it now be their turn to kill and burn?

What an unbelievably stupid idea – finding a book guilty.

Books are never guilty! They are just printed lines on pieces of paper.

It is people who make all the choices about how they understand and interpret the texts that they read.

It is people who choose to cement their perspectives as an absolute truth into history text-books or to allow or disallow a variety of perspectives to coexist and enrich each other.

History meanwhile runs in circles hoping to attract our attention and bring us to our senses.

Unfortunately, with all the smoke and noise around, nobody seems to be paying much attention.



One Response so far


I do not always find that I can agree completely with articles on this site, but in this case I find an exception. More’s the pity for what it says about us as a civilization as a whole. It makes me weep at times to realize the truth in your words and know there is little else we can do to open the eyes of those who are sighted and yet blind.
I AM proud to be able to say that my family and friends do try to make a difference in this world.
I am leaving this comment to let you know you have made a difference too. I would like your permission to post your article on my facebook page if you wouldn’t mind. I am that impressed with it. You can reach me through Jean Mavrelis if this does not give my e-mail addy.

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