Politicizing History

What purpose is served by governing bodies choosing to redefine historic events with new buzz words or with modern political undertones? Would it be prudent to rename the Civil War the “War of Northern Enslavement” or reclassify exploration of Antarctica as the “conquest” of Antarctica? These terms do not change historical events. In fact, unless world governments have found some way to alter relativity and travel through time powered only by the hot air of a political assembly, as far as I know they have no effect on history whatsoever. I broach this subject, because as of late it has been a trend the world over for governments to look back on history through the lens of a modern actuary and begin assigning blame, making demands, and rewriting history, much to the detriment of modern political realities and to the integrity of the historical process itself.

One such example is the current trend of world governments to publicly redefine the deaths of 1.5 million Armenian Christians at the hands of the Ottoman Turks during World War I as “genocide.” Just recently the Swedes have followed the lead of the Americans by taking a parliamentary vote on the issue, declaring this massacre an official “genocide.” I can’t hardly disagree with the diagnosis, but what effect on the disease? Does declaring a dead man diabetic change the fact that he is dead? These events are long past, and their analysis is best left in the hands of competent historians, not as talking points on the political docket of foreign dignitaries.

What is the purpose of these political shenanigans? Do they make the remaining Christians safer? Do they bring closure or peace to an ongoing threat? Does it in any way make the world a better place to assign blame to the present for the crimes of a dead generation? This appears to be another case of government overstepping its bounds in the realm of academics, a place where most of them have but the slightest credibility and barely a whisper of a credential.