Preserving the Real Past

By Daniel Nardini

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - CommentaryIn far-away Hong Kong, a man named Bryan Ong has opened a museum that documents Hong Kong’s colonial past under Great Britain. The museum, unlike what the Communist Party of China is forcefully teaching the people of Hong Kong now, is presenting an overall positive view of British rule in Hong Kong. I am convinced this will not be viewed favorably by the Chinese government, and the local Hong Kong administration under strict Chinese government control may view this museum unfavorably. Since the Communist Party of China took direct control over Hong Kong, it has closed a number of museums, universities and institutions deemed “subversive” by the Communist Party. It is a terrible tragedy that institutions like the Communist Party of China has way too much power to shut down, imprison and exile those who simply hold another opinion.

Now let me bring this point closer to home. In the United States, there are leftist groups who have been trying to re-write history to suit their own narrative. One example are those who “complain” about Confederate battle flags being displayed in local museums that talk about the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865). Of course these flags are being displayed; they are a part of the history of what happened during that time period. But there are leftist groups and some misguided politicians who have called for all Confederate flags to be removed from museums. This is ridiculous and asinine. These items are a part of history, and if we start censoring history because some people do not like a part of American history or what an item might symbolize, then history itself becomes censored and destroyed. I have heard leftists, when they tear down and destroy Confederate flags on either public or private property, say that such flags “belong in museums.” Well, this does not seem to be true either. This has happened and is happening even now.

There is a common thread what the Communist Party of China and leftist groups in the United States are doing. This is to censor, destroy and create a completely new and leftist narrative for their own purposes. In the case of China, it is that the “Communist Party has created a new and glorious era in the history of China, and there can be no new China without the Communist Party.” To that end, they have censored and destroyed any and all records of the past and anything that would cast the Communist Party in a bad light even if true. The leftists in America, whether inside the Democratic Party or outside of it, are doing the same thing. By removing what they find “objectionable,” are trying to portray America as this evil, dark land bent on nothing good in the world except imperialist intentions and world conquest.

The museums and their contents in this country have existed for decades, even over a century, preserved almost from the day they were put on display. There is no doubt that there were those who tried to create a certain narrative of the “Confederate lost cause,” and this kind of nonsense should be debunked with cold hard facts. At the same time I am seeing a Marxist interpretation sprouting up portraying America as a dark, evil place and that only socialism will “save the world.” I do not see how this is any better, and it is a complete lie based on ideology and simplistic distortions of American history. In my view, it is as important to prevent such extremist ideologues from taking our history and ramming this leftist trash down our throats. However, this is just one part of the greater divide in America today. We have a country dangerously divided against itself on either a growing extremist left wing or right wing ideology where America is an all good, wholesome and pure place (as taught by the political right); or is an evil, dark land and being the “most terrible country on earth” (as taught by the political left). This division seems to be red states versus blue states, rural areas versus urban and suburban areas, and liberal and leftist news media outlets versus conservative and rightist news media outlets. And it seems one of the first casualties is becoming our history.

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