Saturday, August 06, 2005

History lesson

I did an imprompt experiment recently to test the historical consciousness of Our Youth.

The sampling, admittedly, was small: one 20-year-old.

And there was only one question, that being, "Who'd we fight in World War II?"

The 20-year-old's answer was: "France?"

I'm not sure what my body/facial language revealed at the moment, but I'm pretty sure it was a look of open-mouthed incredulity, because the 20-year-old immediately surmised the answer was incorrect.

"Well, we don't like France, do we?"

True, I haven't had a Perrier in years, but no, France was on our side in WW2. We were fighting the Germans and the Japanese and the Italians.

All this was brought to mind today when I read
Slampo's Place.

Slampo wrote about the 60th anniversary of the nuking of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the historical revisionist view of those events put forth by one Howard Zinn, whom we briefly saw featured the other day on a Sundance Channel documentary.

Then Slampo went into what a Washington Post education reporter found out regarding what schoolchildren are learning about World War II, the chief signposts being the internment of Japanese Americans, mistreatment of African Americans and the influx of women into the wartime workforce, as opposed to D-Day, Okinawa, etc., etc.

It's all fairly mind-boggling. I blame MTV. 'Course, I blame MTV for almost everything, but that's what I think. Oh, and the "system" of public education in this country. I blame that, too. And the parents. Don't forget the parents.

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